Has the Republican establishment given up on Mitt Romney’s chances of becoming president?
Former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough, an avowed conservative (he received a 95 percent lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union), said this on TV the other morning:
Nobody thinks Romney’s going to win. Let’s just be honest. Can we just say this for everybody at home? Let me just say this for everybody at home. The Republican establishment — I’ve yet to meet a single person in the Republican establishment that thinks Mitt Romney is going to win the general election this year. They won’t say it on TV because they’ve got to go on TV and they don’t want people writing them nasty emails. I obviously don’t care. But I have yet to meet anybody in the Republican establishment that worked for George W. Bush, that works in the Republican congress, that worked for Ronald Reagan that thinks Mitt Romney is going to win the general election.
Paul Waldman of The American Prospect reacted to Scarborough’s comments THUSLY:
So it’s possible that 2012 could be the third presidential election just in the last 16 years in which Republicans knew they had basically no chance of winning. Nobody ever thought Bob Dole had much of a shot to beat Bill Clinton, but it was his turn and making him the nominee seemed like the right thing to do after a lifetime of service to the Republican party. He lost by eight and a half points, in an election that was never close. In 2008 the polls were a lot tighter for much of the race, but in the end Barack Obama spanked John McCain by 13 points.
It’s still quite early, and the election will have ups and downs. I’d even guess that at some point, Romney will actually pull ahead in tracking polls. But what’s interesting here is Scarborough’s contention that the Republican establishment has already given up. That can’t be good for Mitt.