This seems to be a replay of the 2004 campaign summers, only with the parties switched around. Bush was personally popular, but looked to be in trouble. Kerry main campaign theme was "I'm a war hero, so I'm more trustworthy". It was hard to tell what his economic policy was other than "I'm not Bush". When the swift boat stories came out, they destroyed Kerry's campaign strategy of running as a war hero. Kerry ignored the political fact and kept the same strategy through November ("John Kerry reporting for duty . . . ")
Romney's campaign theme has been "I was a businessman, I know how to create jobs". True or not, those negative ads have destroyed Romney's campaign strategy. It's gone. He can either whine about it or fix his strategy.