Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Mittens Counterfactual

Generalissimo Kos makes an under-appreciated point:

But think, what if McCain had picked Mitt Romney as his veep choice, like so many of us were fervently hoping?

Sure, the rollout wouldn't have give McCain a fraction of the attention and excitement that Palin generated. The GOP ticket's (now evaporated) post-convention bump would've been smaller, and maybe Romney would've been less effective at revving up the fundy base.

But right now? Romney would be kicking ass. The media would treat him with deference as an economic expert, and let's be honest, he does looks straight out of central casting for the role of "serious businessman who we should defer to on the economy". McCain wouldn't have to hide him. Romney could make the media rounds, being taken seriously no matter what GOP gibberish he spouted. Rather than flail and cower, a McCain/Romney ticket would look sure-footed and confident, projecting gravitas in a time of uncertainty.

As I think I wrote at the time, I was not among those who were all but begging John McCain to pick Romney. I just never saw the comically hapless figure that others did. And that was well before the financial crisis had moved to the front pages. You have to think he's looking at that ABC/WaPo 52-43 print and laughing his billionaire ass off.

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