Is conservative pundit Eric Erickson the right’s Nate Silver?
Unless you’ve been on Mars — or in the Twilight Zone with Donald Trump — you know about how the New York Times’ stats maven Nate Silver triumphed over several weeks of conservative demonization to predict the election results to the extent that he belongs on this page.
But Erickson — a co-founder of the conservative website Red State and an official talking head on CNN — has republished some of his earlier writings about Romney from November 8, 2011 and you could swear he had a crystal ball or was somehow separated-at-birth from Silver when it came to predicting what would happen.
Here’s a peek at just part of the post, which MUST be read in full. On the election campaign, after perfectly explaining why Romney would be the nominee (it came true) he writes this:
Why Mitt Romney Will Not Beat Barack Obama
You’d think that given the economy, jobs, and the present angst about the direction of the country that the GOP would have an easy path to victory. You would be wrong.
You forget the electoral college. The vote is coming down to a handful of states and Barack Obama still maintains the advantage of incumbency and not terribly terrible polling in those swing states.
Mitt Romney, on the other hand, is a man devoid of any principles other than getting himself elected. As much as the American public does not like Barack Obama, they loath a man so fueled with ambition that he will say or do anything to get himself elected. Mitt Romney is that man.
To beat Barack Obama, a candidate must paint a bold contrast with the Democrats on their policies. When Mitt Romney tries, Barack Obama will be able to show that just the other day Mitt Romney held exactly the opposite position as the one he holds today.
Voters may not like Barack Obama, but by the time Obama is done with Romney they will not trust Mitt Romney. And voters would rather the guy they don’t like than they guy they don’t trust.
Then there’s this section:
Why Conservatism Will Die
Conservatism is already dying. Republicans on Capitol Hill are about to raise taxes on the American people with this Super Committee, but they’ll say they are just “raising revenue,” not taxes. Conservatives will give them a pass as they have on virtually every other major issue. Conservatives keep giving passes to people who shouldn’t be given passes because conservative in Washington have been there so long, they’d much rather get invited to the cocktail parties and avoid awkward encounters.
Washington, D.C. conservatives will also rally around Mitt Romney, just as they kept doing over and over and over with George W. Bush even after steel tariffs in Pennsylvania, No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, the GM Bailout, and TARP. At some point the public will cease taking conservatives seriously when the most prominent conservatives — those in Washington who pose as the faces, voices, and writers of the conservative movement at large, keep throwing their lot in with a guy who keeps selling out the very principles conservatives claim to hold dear.
Some conservatives, of course, will not go all in for Romney. These conservatives will be blamed by major Republican and “conservative” mouth pieces for not doing enough to help Mitt Romney. They will be alienated, blamed, and made the scapegoat for the failures of the establishment GOP.
But there is something else too — Mitt Romney is winning the nomination without conservative help. The only time he pays conservatives any attention is when they cry loud enough that the media takes notice and Romney decides the story needs to go away. Once he is the nominee, it will be all about wooing the independents.
The Contrast To Be Drawn
It is striking to me that in 2012 there is broad based popular angst against Wall Street and Washington and the Republican Party is on the verge of nominating a multi-millionaire scion of the Rockefeller Wing of the Republican Party whose closest encounters with the common man are accidentally touching one of the many hired hands in one of the many rooms of one of his many mansions. But then many of the DC-NYC Republican “conservatives” who support Romney are the same, only coming into contact with regular people when they are served their breakfast by a steward in the first class car on the Acela Express.
Neither Romney nor the Washington GOP crowd who loves him have very much at all in common with fly over country conservatives who see the GOP and Democrats both as out to lunch tools of K-Street and Wall Street. The party that could lead a conservative, populist campaign against Wall Street and Barack Obama, the former getting fat off the latter, will instead nominate a guy more at home on Wall Street than Main Street.
And enough conservatives will be cheerleaders and rally around him that by November of 2012 the ideological underpinnings of the modern American conservative movement will be coming apart.
I’m starting to think I need to walk it back on my rejection of Jon Huntsman. Because I’m starting to think even he would be more faithful in his conservative convictions than Mitt Romney.
It’s pretty remarkable.
And I wonder:
Will Dick Morris publish his past predictions?