Deficit Focus Is Wise Play For Mitt Romney

Think about battleground states that aren't experiencing terrible unemployment numbers (IA, NH, NM, VA). Once you add this to the calculus, you begin to realize why Romney is wise to focus on deficit/debt right now. From the NationalJournal's Josh Kraushaar:

Concern over federal spending is what drove the tea party movement into existence in 2009, and it's an issue that hasn't gone away in 2012.

When pollsters ask voters what their most important issue is, the catch-all "jobs and the economy" comes first. But the number of voters naming the deficit rose in 2010 and has remained largely constant, and it's an issue that's driving conservatives to the polls. It's also a way for Romney to criticize the president on the economy in states that haven't suffered the brunt of the downturn.

If Obama needs high levels of youth and minority turnout to win a second term, Romney needs a restive base anxious about the fiscal future of the country to show up in big numbers. That's the ticket to a Romney victory in states like Iowa, New Hampshire, and Virginia -- where the economy is pretty good but voter dissatisfaction still runs high.

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published this page in In The News 2012-05-16 12:34:00 -0400
Analysis & Political Strategy