As I mentioned early yesterday morning, the media had obviously conspired with the Obama campaign over the holiday to start the week off with a well-organized media blitz meant to knock Romney off message and aid and abet the Obama campaign’s desire to define the former Massachusetts governor as an extremist. And we all saw this play out as the corrupt MSM blew up a wildly hypocritical narrative around Romney’s ties to Donald Trump.
Well, I have good news. According to Byron York, Romney’s refusing to take the bait.
Mitt Romney’s refusal to repudiate Donald Trump sends a signal, both to Democrats and the voting public: With the nation’s future at stake in this November’s election, Romney will not accommodate calls that he disown supporters who make ill-considered, unpopular, or sometimes outrageous statements on matters not fundamental to the campaign.
Romney aides believe that cooperating with Democrats and media figures who are demanding a Trump disavowal would most certainly lead to more calls for more disavowals of other figures in the future — leaving Romney spending as much time apologizing for his supporters as campaigning for president. Team Romney views it as a silly and one-sided game designed to distract voters from the central issue of the race, which they remain convinced will be President Obama’s handling of the economy.
By one-sided, they mean not only that Obama has not disavowed SuperPAC contributor Bill Maher for a number of Maher’s statements that were particularly insulting to Republican women. They also mean the press, with, as Team Romney see it, questionable associations of its own. Has David Gregory, moderator of NBC’s “Meet the Press,” repudiated his colleague Al Sharpton, the MSNBC host with a decades-long record of incendiary statements and actions? …
Another reason Romney is wary of such concessions is that John McCain tried them, and they didn’t do him any good.
Yep, Mitt Romney gets it; he understands the most important issue involving the media — what John McCain never got — and that’s that the media is neither biased nor out of touch, but that they are out to destroy Romney’s candidacy in order to reelect Obama.
Romney also understands that the corrupt media plays a game with our side that I like to call “Escape Hatch.” And here’s how it works…
What the media does is conspire to create a suffocating narrative that puts all kinds of pressure on our side. The idea is to turn up the heat, but while doing so, to offer a way out. “If you’ll just do what we demand,” the media says. “If you’ll just apologize or admit you were wrong or repudiate or distance yourself, this will all go away.”
And that’s the escape hatch.
Except, when it comes to Republicans, it’s a trap and it’s always a trap. First off, giving in to the media means fueling the narrative for a couple more days — which the media loves. It also means the media has found a chink in your armor and will hit you there again and again and again.
Romney might have lost yesterday’s news cycle, but by staying strong, he kept it from becoming a three-day news cycle. Furthermore, by informing the media that they are only wasting time with this game, Romney probably saved himself from losing countless news cycles between now and November.
The other way this helps Romney is that nothing angers the base more than a candidate who caves and caters to the corrupt media. Furthermore, staying on message and not being seen in reactionary mode shows steady, strong leadership — something voters appreciate even if they don’t like Donald Trump.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC