Why should people believe that: Now they’ve even got Kevin Drum! Dude out in California!
We of course refer to this post. Drum wonders how Romney could have believed, right to the end, that he was going to win:
DRUM (11/9/12): Just in case you haven't read this yet, here's a remarkable statistic: even if Romney had won Ohio, Florida, and Virginia, he still would have lost. This makes it all the weirder that he and his team were so sure they were going to win all the way to the end. After all, it's plausible that if turnout had been slightly different he could have reeled in those three states, which he lost by only two or three points. But which state would have been the fourth? Pennsylvania? He lost it by 5 points. Colorado? 5 points. New Hampshire? 6 points. Iowa? 6 points. Nevada? 7 points. Wisconsin? 7 points. What possible turnout models could they have been cooking up in their back rooms that convinced them any of those states were truly in play?Aside from the fact that the New York Times has politely reported the claim as a fact, why should anyone believe that Romney and his team “were sure they were going to win all the way to the end?”
Are we supposed to believe that claim just because Team Romney says it?
When Romney unexpectedly scheduled a last-weekend visit to Pennsylvania, everyone agreed that this was most likely an act of desperation. Now, Romney Land spreads the claim that they were shocked, just shocked, when they lost Tuesday night—and we stampede to accept this claim as an established fact. (At this point, we're also throwing Kevin's commenters under the bus.)
Why should people believe this claim? For ourselves, we have no idea.
A bit of historical context: The GOP always invents a tale, or a set of tales, which help explain away defeat. Example:
In 1992, exit polls showed that Perot voters would have split evenly between Clinton and Bush. But the GOP began spreading the claim that Perot cost Bush the election.
This tale is now widely accepted as fact. Just yesterday, we heard a graduate school type at the bagel joint announcing this fact to a group of friends with whom he gathers weekly.
It may be the liberal world's greatest skill: adopting the face-saving claims of the GOP. Given the weird logic patterns of the current GOP, the claim that Romney believed he was going to win may be the latest example.