Emmett Tyrrell

I wondered how this would play with the audience and with our speakers. As it turned out, it played out just fine. Except for my admiration for Chief Justice John Roberts' decision two weeks ago on Obamacare, the assembled celebrated my optimism. I expected as much from Grover. He has for years struck an optimistic chord, even in grim moments, and I think his optimism will be borne out. But even a "confirmed pessimist" like Nordlinger was sunny. On a panel whose rubric ran "Can Romney Win," Jay said Romney would win "big." He said that a majority of voters would ask themselves the question, "Would you like to rehire Obama?" The answer was thumpingly "no." This President would be retired on his job performance alone. Romney strikes people as a "Turnaround Artist" who is "likeable." Obama will "turn bitter, caustic, and dislikable."

John Fund said Romney could only lose if he "read too many biographies of Governor Tom Dewey," the New Yorker who went down in defeat to President Harry Truman in 1948 after running as a moderate Republican. John called for Romney to "outline his own vision," a conservative vision. Yet he cautioned that Romney must go out from his tight circle of advisors and reach out to the conservatives. Fund said that he knew no one on Romney's inner circle, and that he was concerned about the guy (Eric Fehrnstrom) from the Romney inner circle who kept repeating blunders: his etch-a-sketch blunder and his initial claim that the healthcare mandate was to be paid for by a penalty rather than a tax, as the Congressional Republicans insisted.

Grover said we need to implement a vast program of reform, and we need to do it soon upon Romney's election. Luckily, we have that program, "the Ryan Plan." He was referring to Congressman Paul Ryan's "Roadmap for America's Future." That sounds good to me. And upon hearing it, I wandered off to look for my life jacket. One never knows when a squall might come up, and the result could be catastrophe.

Emmett Tyrrell

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator and co-author of Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House.
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