January 4, 2012

THE REST IS EASY:

A Big Win for Romney in Iowa: The former governor of Massachusetts is now a heavy favorite for the nomination. (KARL ROVE, 1/04/12, WSJ)

Not long ago few thought Mitt Romney could win both the very conservative Iowa caucuses and then the quirky, slightly contrarian New Hampshire primary. If he did, most assumed he would have a lock on the Republican nomination. For understandable reasons: No other GOP presidential candidate in an open race has achieved back-to-back victories in these first two contests.

By this time next week, we'll know if Mr. Romney is 2-0. If so, he becomes the prohibitive favorite. [...]

The former Massachusetts governor should prepare to be the piƱata at Saturday's debate in Manchester, N.H. It won't be pleasant, but he can solidify his lead if he deflects the attacks in a dignified, confident manner and avoids looking irritated or rattled. As in earlier debates, better to look amused rather than annoyed. Wherever possible, Mr. Romney should focus his fire on substantive disagreements with Mr. Obama while demonstrating his readiness to embrace bold reform (as he did in his entitlement reform speech endorsing the thrust of Rep. Paul Ryan's budget). Easier said than done.

If a year ago you said that Mitt Romney would win Iowa, be heading to New Hampshire with a large lead, and his chief opponent would be a former senator who lost his re-election race in a swing state by 18 points, you would have had to believe Mr. Romney would be on his way to winning the GOP nomination. And you know what? Now we'll see if it plays out that way.

Let the others run for the nomination while you run against Mr. Obama.  Ignore them.

Posted by at January 4, 2012 9:51 PM
  

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