How The Heck Did Mitt Romney Lose Ohio??
Image you are an Ohio Republican and you awoke the morning after the 2012 election to the following facts:
- President Barack Obama received 250,000 fewer Ohio votes in 2012 than he did in 2008.
- President Barack Obama lost 6 more Ohio counties than he won in 2008.
- President Barack Obama’s margin of victory in counties he won was smaller than 2008.
- President Barack Obama’s 2012 margin of defeat was greater than his 2008 margin in the counties he lost.
- President Obama lost the Ohio independents’ vote by 16 percentage points.
If you were an Ohio Republican and woke to hear those facts, you’d be ready to book your January trip to Washington to see a Republican sworn in as President of the United States.
You’d be wrong.
The 2012 presidential race in Ohio came down to two simple things. Ohioans are not really happy with President Obama. Ohioans still like him better than Mitt Romney.
The opportunity for Republicans to regain Ohio was there, but Mitt Romney was not the man to take it. And that’s primarily because of four words: Let Detroit Go Bankrupt.
The title of Romney’s New York Times op-ed piece was dead weight he could not shed. And when he finally tried late in the campaign, his convoluted explanation and misleading TV ad did not work and possibly backfired.
Mitt Romney not only faced a gender gap with women, he faced an auto workers gap. According to exit polls 59% of Ohioans supported government intervention to save the auto industry.
OSU political scientist Paul Beck says President Obama’s support of the bailout of GM and Chrysler helped him win a larger portion of white working class male voters in Northern Ohio than he did in 2008. “It may well have been decisive”, said Beck
Sure, the president had a better Ohio field organization than Romney. Mitt Romney was hurt by his promise to cut Planned Parenthood funding. His 47-Percent speech to donors did not help him connect to middle class voters. Maybe Romney should have chosen Senator Rob Portman of Ohio has his running mate.
But when he leaves office, President Obama should buy an Ohio-made Chevy Cruze. It’s what he rode to victory Ohio and another four years in The White House.