How bad was Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech? According to Intrade, the odds of Obama being reelected have increased from 55.7% before the speech to 56.8% after.
Bloomberg reported that, “The odds that President Barack Obama will be re-elected on Nov. 6 rose to 56.8 percent after the Republicans concluded their nominating convention, according to online prediction market Intrade. Obama’s odds, at 10:21 a.m. New York time, compared with a 43.3 percent chance for a victory by Republican nominee Mitt Romney, according to bets made at the Dublin-based bookmaker. Obama’s chances increased from 55.7 percent yesterday, while Romney’s dropped slightly from 43.4 percent.”
Anyone looking for a big bounce in support for Mitt Romney after that speech probably shouldn’t be holding their breath. The speech was an underwhelming disjointed mess with no theme, no vision, and at times seemingly no idea where it was going.
Mitt Romney’s speech was essentially a longer more drawn out version of his stump speech. If you have heard Romney speak in the last five years, then you’ve heard this speech before.
But it takes a special kind of fail to give a national address, and see your opponent’s odds of success increase.
The lowered odds on Romney highlight his main problem. The more voters see and hear from him, the less they like him.
This phenomenon presented itself first during the Republican primary. In state after state, the more Romney campaigned, the more his approval numbers dropped. His numbers experienced a bit of an uptick after he clinched the nomination and got off the campaign trail, but his first big step on the national stage revealed same underwhelming and unlikable Romney.
Mitt Romney not only failed to redefine his campaign, but he may have hurt himself with voters. In a bad economy, voters are always open to the idea of tossing out incumbents, but it is up to the challengers to make the case that they can do a better job. Mitt Romney didn’t do that.
It is doubtful that there will be a tidal wave of Romney support in the next set of polls. No one should be surprised if Romney gets zero to minimal bounce out of his convention. Romney may have been harmed by the fact that convention forced him into a shotgun wedding with the unpopular Republican brand. He may have been dinged by the fact that Clint Eastwood yelling at furniture was the most memorable moment of the convention, but mostly the problem was Mitt Romney.
The Republican nominee demonstrated once again that he is over matched by the big stage. If the impression that Romney left in Tampa helped Obama today, imagine what is fallout might be when these two men are standing by side at the presidential debates.
Only Mitt Romney could hurt his odds of victory by showing up at his own convention. The one thing working most in Obama’s favor as he campaigns for reelection is that he is running against Mitt Romney.