The New York Times above-the-fold headline this morning screams, “Illinois Is Test For Romney.”
Is that sort of like how New Hampshire was a “big test” for Romney?
Kind of like how Florida was a test for Romney?
Maybe like how Michigan was a test for Romney?
Or perhaps it’s akin to how Ohio was a test for Romney?
Oh, wait — maybe it’s a test like how Puerto Rico was “yet another test” for Mitt Romney.
At what point does the student who keeps getting A’s on all the tests get to graduate?
Of course, the media would have nothing to report on if the race between Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney was over, so they are prolonging this thing as long as they possibly can. (And by nothing to report on, I of course mean nothing that can damage the Republican brand quite as much as the mud slinging between our front runner and our also-rans.) And just to show how altruistic they are, many of these “reporters” are putting their journalism degrees to good use by trying their hands at campaign strategy.
That above-the-fold New York Times piece, for instance, tells Romney that Illinois is more conservative than it used to be, and urges him to try and reach out more and connect with the conservative GOP base. Romney is having trouble in Illinois, they posture, because “middle-of-the-road Republicans” are “becoming obsolete.”
Thanks for the help, Gray Lady. But wait — what about this new Politico piece up this morning that also presumes to offer strategic advice to Team Romney? They claim that Romney is having trouble in Illinois because he has been “moving to the right” — and that “tack to the right on a range of issues” is costing him votes in a moderate state like Illinois.
Well, thanks for that helpful bit of analysis.
I’m sure the New York Times and Politico both have nothing but the best of intentions at heart when offering this contradictory advice to Romney. (And if you believe that, I have some oceanfront property you might be interested in.) But when all the lights are turned off tomorrow night, Mitt Romney will have passed yet another test imposed on him by the media. Republicans will be one step closer to having their nominee. And our other candidates will continue to play right into the media and the DNC’s strategy of prolonging this nomination battle. The real “test” in this race isn’t Mitt Romney winning yet another primary. The real test is for Santorum and Gingrich: which do they love more – themselves, or the country and the party?