Many conservatives bought into the partisan spin around Mitt Romney and his Mittmentum that failed to materialise. They bought into all the bullshit about dodgy polls. And they followed other conservative pundits blindly down the wrong alley.
It is easy to close oneself off inside a conservative echo chamber. And right-leaning outlets like Fox News and Rush Limbaugh’s show are far more intellectually closed than CNN or public radio. If you’re a rank-and-file conservative, you’re probably ready to acknowledge that ideologically friendly media didn’t accurately inform you about Election 2012. Some pundits engaged in wishful thing; others feigned confidence in hopes that it would be a self-fulfilling prophecy; still others decided it was smart to keep telling right-leaning audiences what they wanted to hear.
But guess what?
You haven’t just been misinformed about the horse race. Since the very beginning of the election cycle, conservative media has been failing you. With a few exceptions, they haven’t tried to rigorously tell you the truth, or even to bring you intellectually honest opinion. What they’ve done instead helps to explain why the right failed to triumph in a very winnable election.
Why do you keep putting up with it?
Conservatives were at a disadvantage because Romney supporters like Jennifer Rubin and Hugh Hewitt saw it as their duty to spin constantly for their favored candidate rather than being frank about his strengths and weaknesses. What conservative¬†Washington Post¬†readers got, when they traded in Dave Weigel for Rubin, was a lot more hackery and a lot less informed about the presidential election.
Conservatives were at an information disadvantage because so many right-leaning outlets wasted time on stories the rest of America dismissed as nonsense.¬†WorldNetDaily¬†brought you birtherism.¬†Forbes¬†brought you Kenyan anti-colonialism.¬†National Review¬†obsessed about an imaginary rejection of American exceptionalism,¬†misrepresenting an Obama quote¬†in the process, and Andy McCarthy was interviewed widely about his theory that Obama, aka the Drone Warrior in Chief, allied himself with our Islamist enemies in a “Grand Jihad” against America. Seriously?
Conservatives were at a disadvantage because their information elites pandered in the most cynical, self-defeating ways, treating would-be candidates like Sarah Palin and Herman Cain as if they were plausible presidents rather than national jokes who’d lose worse than George McGovern.