David Axelrod is Just Messing With Us at This Point

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 7 2012 12:59 PM

David Axelrod is Just Messing With Us at This Point

Sam Stein grabs the newsiest part of the Obama campaign "hah, hah, losers" conference call that followed Super Tuesday. "Newiest" is used with some sarcasm.

If Romney couldn't stand up to "the most strident voices in your party how can he stand up to Ahmadinejad?" Axelrod asked. "How are you going to stand up to the challenges of the presidency? These are tests. Presidential campaigns are tests. You are tested every single days in different ways. The Limbaugh thing was a test of leadership, and you have them all the time, and Mitt Romney has failed those tests in the campaign."
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As Stein implies, this is basically parody. Republicans love the "if you can't stand up to X how can you defeat Y" locution. A problem: I have no idea why Romney should have to "stand up" to Limbaugh, who 1) says things like the Fluke riff all the time, 2) apologized for the most offensive part of the Fluke riff, and 3) has no particular connection to Romney -- in fact, he criticizes Romney all the time, and the media for elevating the GOP's most moderate candidate. Axelrod has no case. He's a nomad flogging a camel to get one last mile out of it after it's already crossed half the Gobi with no water.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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