Can Mitt Romney seal the deal?

In presidential politics, there are many factors at play in determining the candidate who will win their party’s nomination, and then the presidency. Obama’s big draw in 2008 was the way in which he inspired the nation, and people were excited to go to the polls and cast their ballots for him. Will people be excited to vote for Romney? He has remained steady in the polls at around 20% as the other candidates have shifted all around. Is this 20% a floor for Romney, or a ceiling?

The latest Gallup poll shows that Romney’s positive intensity score, a measure of how favored the candidates are, at a new low of 9—steadily decreasing since the summer. The latest candidate to challenge Romney for the top spot, New Gingrich, currently leads the field with a positive intensity score of 20. Romney may not be the most exciting candidate, but is Gingrich really any better? I think the problem with Romney is that he doesn’t come off as someone with any real convictions. He’s been labeled as a flip-flopper, and he’s had a hard time losing that label. In a recent interview with Bret Baier of FOX News, Romney got testy when he was asked about how his positions have changed over time.

What Gingrich currently has going for him is that he’s been in politics for a very long time, and it’s understood that he knows what he’s talking about. He sounds sincere when he talks about his ideas for the nation, where Romney comes across as robotic at times. In the CNN article Mitt Romney – Where’s the rest of him?, Joe Klein is quoted as describing Romney as “uninspiring to moderates and untrustworthy to conservatives.”  The piece suggests that Romney should exhibit more emotion, and I agree with this to some extent. With Obama, we occasionally saw him with his family or having a good time, and this helped forge a personal connection with voters. We rarely see Romney outside his politician mode of participating in a debate or discussing policy.

Gingrich may already be convinced that he’ll be the nominee, but I think he’s getting ahead of himself. The Iowa Caucus is still a month away, and that’s a long time in politics. It will be interesting to see where the race goes once the votes start being cast.

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  • hartwe60  On December 6, 2011 at 12:21 am

    I agree that Romney is having a hard time exciting the voters but I think that can be said of all of the Republican candidates. The people I have talked to, who consider themselves conservative, don’t really feel any strong feels for any candidate.


  • By The Electability Factor « wattelection on December 16, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    […] Knowing this, the rise of Gingrich has really surprised me. I’ve already taken a look at some of the issues with Romney, but his list of faults seems small when compared to all of the baggage that comes with nominating […]

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