Robert W. Patterson writes:

President Obama may have scored a narrow victory Tuesday night, barely winning 50 percent of the popular vote. Yet his squeaker of a triumph not only represents a bigger loss for the Party of Lincoln, but also offers a critically important lesson.

Republicans and their standard bearer, Mitt Romney, were confident of consigning Obama to the same ash heap as the failed Jimmy Carter presidency. But Election Day hit them like a ton of bricks. Extending the tragic reversal of their three landslides in the 1980s, the GOP failed for the fifth time in six presidential elections to capture the vote of the people. ...

The experts may wish that Romney had put on the boxing gloves that helped him knock out his primary opponents, lament Gov. Christie's bear hug of the president at the Jersey Shore, and complain that the party's base is too white and religious. But the main reason the Republican ship went down has little do with strategy, tactics, or demographics. Nor is it related, as Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly have suggested, to Romney's infamous 47 percent (a national group that includes retirees on Social Security and Medicare) of Americans who supposedly want no responsibility, only more government handouts.

Rather, it has everything to do with Republican leaders and insiders, including the presumed best and brightest of the conservative media and think tanks, who long ago dumped the girl that Republicans such as Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan brought to the dance. That gal in question: Middle America.

Whole thing here.

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