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Politics / N2K Presidential Race Analysis

N2K Presidential: Why Jorge Ramos Matters

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

September 20, 2012

Univision anchor Jorge Ramos today laid out the logic for voting against President Obama more effectively than Mitt Romney’s campaign has in recent days.

“A promise is a promise,” Ramos told Obama during a Univision forum. “And, with all due respect, you didn't keep that promise.”

Ramos, an Emmy-winning Univision staple, was pressing the president specifically over comprehensive immigration reform. And Romney has taken hits for failing to offer details of his immigration policy intentions.

Obama later conceded that failure to pass comprehensive immigration reform was a major disappointment, adding that he was "confident" it will happen.

But Ramos hit a tuning fork in the gut of the electorate: sky-high, probably unreachable expectations for Obama that have been largely unreached. On immigration, on winding down Afghanistan, and chiefly on the economy, voters feel like they were promised something, and that it hasn’t been delivered.

It’s at the core of Romney’s message. But that kernel of the Romney argument has been clouded by campaign missteps and unflattering news.  

Polls show Obama ahead, with 47 days to go the odds-on favorite. If enough voters share Ramos’s explanation of promise betrayed, and feel it deeply enough, Romney may overcome his self-inflicted woes after all.

-- Jim O’Sullivan
@JOSullivanNatJo

NATIONAL JOURNAL
S PRESIDENTIAL RACE REPORT

Romney and Allies Have Money, but Will it Matter?
[National Journal, 9/20/12] A coming GOP financial flood is a source of concern among Democrats, but for Romney, the dilemma is one of diminishing returns: The money may pay for more ads in battleground states, but some voters have already tuned out.  

Romney Rescue Plan: More Mitt
[Politico, 9/19/12] Mitt Romney and his campaign are settling on a rescue plan to dial down the fundraisers and instead show more of him — in ads, speeches, and campaign appearances. A big focus, according to campaign officials, will be on Romney talking a lot more about how his ideas will help regular Americans who remain deeply suspicious of him.

 

In Heart of Romney World, No Retreat, No Surrender
[National Journal, 9/20/12] As the media prepares a funeral march for the Romney campaign amid a string of gaffes and bad polling results, it's business as usual at the campaign’s Boston headquarters.

Reuters Poll: Obama, Up 5 Points, Solidifies Lead over Romney
[Reuters, 9/20/12] In the online poll, Obama led by even wider margins on likeability and appearing presidential. Lead pollster Julia Clark pegs Obama’s chances of winning at 70-80 percent. CORRECTION: An earlier version of this item misspelled Julia Clark's name.

Why Is Romney Losing His Edge on the Economy?
[CBS News, 9/20/12] A handful of new surveys suggest that Romney's losing his edge on questions about the economy -- a potentially troubling sign for a campaign that has recently been dogged by controversy.

Pawlenty Quits Romney Campaign to Head Bank Lobby Group
[Reuters, 9/20/12] Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty had been a national cochair of his formal rival’s campaign, but will now head up the Financial Services Roundtable. Pawlenty will help JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and other banks navigate the implementation of Dodd-Frank regulations.

Ryan Fundraising Numbers Jump 
[Politico, 9/20/12] In Ryan’s first month on the Republican ticket, his Prosperity PAC took in $333,000, about 30 percent more than it had been taking in on average this year. Should Obama win reelection, Ryan’s fundraising success could bolster his credibility as a candidate in 2016.

The Obama You Don’t Know
[Washington Examiner, 9/20/12] The Examiner goes on a deep dive and uncovers some interesting nuggets in its investigation of Obama’s past. Highlights: Obama graded out poorly on student evaluations in his time as lecturer at the University of Chicago, and he once served as attorney for a politically connected Chicago slumlord.

Club for Growth to 'Mixed Bag' Romney: You're on Your Own
[TPM, 9/20/12] The Club for Growth, a group that supports conservative candidates, is not giving its support to Mitt Romney. Chris Chocola, the group’s president, said, “We’re doing nothing to improve his odds.”

Obama Nominates Mega-Donor's Wife to U.N. Post
[Politico, 9/20/12] The Obama administration nominated the wife of billionaire Obama donor Haim Saban to be the U.S. representative to an upcoming session of the United Nations General Assembly. Saban recently wrote a New York Times op-ed supporting Obama on Israel.

How Boston Sees Boston
[National Review, 9/20/12] National Review’s Robert Costa offers an inside look into the Romney campaign. Among the thoughts that campaign operatives offered: The Mother Jones videos are the new tax returns, and Rob Portman is a great debater.

New Voting Laws Get Democratic Organizers Fired Up
[National Journal, 9/20/12] Republicans say new state laws tightening requirements for voters are reasonable precautions against voter fraud, while Democrats argue the laws are GOP attempts to suppress the vote and sway the election. Either way, everyone is fired up.

Reid Wilson: Answer Me These Questions Three
[National Journal, 9/20/12] NJ’s Reid Wilson offers three points on the state of the election: Voters are starting to feel better about the economy as Romney’s team expands its reach; the presidential contest is likely to play a major role in several downballot elections; and super PACs may not matter as much as you think they do. 

Romney Remarks on the 47 Percent Cost Him With Independents
[Detroit Free Press, 9/20/12] A new survey shows that almost a third of independents are less likely to vote for Romney after they heard his remarks.

Does Romney Really Hate Redistribution?
[CBS News, 9/20/12] CBS’s Brian Montopoli writes that there is a disconnect between the emotional appeal embedded in Romney’s anti-redistribution rhetoric and the reality of the American way of life. Experts say most people -- even Republican politicians like Romney -- seem to like some degree of redistribution in practice, even if they oppose it in theory.

Romney's Incredible Shrinking Coattails
[Roll Call, 9/20/12] As polls show Obama’s lead strengthening in key states, GOP campaigns can no longer count on a strong Romney performance to put them over the top in their own elections. Republicans seeking reelection increasingly view their races as in a vacuum -- or at least they hope that’s the case.

Obama Lead Looks Stronger in Polls That Include Cell Phones
[New York Times, 9/19/12] The Times’s Nate Silver writes that Obama seems to be getting stronger results in polls that use live interviewers and that include cell phones in their samples -- enough to suggest that he has a clear advantage in the race.

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