Romney's principal issues were the economy and fixing the finances of the federal government. He failed to make a convincing case that he would do a better job with either.
According to the exit poll, Romney was thought to be better on the economy by just 1 percentage point. On the federal debt, he was thought better by just 2 percentage points. He didn't win either argument. Nor did he deserve to.
On the economy, Romney's main claim was that, as a successful businessman, he knew how to fix it. That's a non sequitur. Business experience doesn't necessarily translate into superior macroeconomic insight. And it left him vulnerable to the savaging of his business record by the other side.
While Romney railed against the federal debt, he never explained how he would get it under control while significantly increasing military spending.
The exit poll asked whether government should be doing more or if it was already doing too many things that would be better left to businesses and individuals. In 2008, voters thought government should be doing more, 51 percent to 43 percent. That's not an election a Republican is going to win.
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