Why Did All These Conservative Pundits Predict that Mitt Romney Would Win?

Fred Barnes, Jay Cost, Peggy Noonan, Larry Kudlow, Michael Barone, Michael Graham, Karl Rove and most especially Dick Morris were wrong. Why did all these conservative pundits predict that Mitt Romney would win? And why did Dick Morris say it would be a landslide?

1. They are conservative, and emotion got in the way of logic.

2. They want to remain popular with their readers/viewers, and tell them what they desperately want to hear.

3. The are doing a “Nouriel Roubini,” especially in the case of Dick Morris. If he had been right he would have been hailed as a genius. You don’t get credit for predicting the obvious. Roubini’s problem was that he didn’t quit while he was ahead. He told people not to buy stocks in the spring of 2009 (I kid you not.) Then again in 2010. Last year he said America was headed to a double dip recession. By now he’s convinced almost everyone that his 2008 prediction was just luck. The problem with becoming lauded as a great forecaster is that people keep asking for more, they want one prediction after another. And no human is capable of doing that. Not even Nouriel Roubini, and certainly not the individuals in the headline of this post.

In fairness to the other side of the EMH debate, even the Intrade market didn’t do well tonight. It was obvious pretty early on that Obama was winning. I kept going to Intrade for confirmation, and it seemed stuck at 70-30. I actually thought the trading site was down, and then more recently the Romney contract collapsed to 1 dollar.

Looks like a big loss for the GOP, which is well-deserved. Also a loss for Romney, who is far better than the party he represented. Too bad America doesn’t have a political party where he could be himself.

William Saletan has a great article about some footage of Romney when he didn’t know he was on camera. Will’s right that Romney looks like a far better man when he can be himself, than when he has to be a phony. The problem is that if Romney had been himself he would not have had even a prayer of winning the Republican nomination. Remember Jon Huntsman? You don’t? That the problem with the Republican party, Jim Huntsman is an honest Mitt Romney, and he didn’t have a prayer.

About Scott Sumner 491 Articles

Affiliation: Bentley University

Scott Sumner has taught economics at Bentley University for the past 27 years.

He earned a BA in economics at Wisconsin and a PhD at University of Chicago.

Professor Sumner's current research topics include monetary policy targets and the Great Depression. His areas of interest are macroeconomics, monetary theory and policy, and history of economic thought.

Professor Sumner has published articles in the Journal of Political Economy, the Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, and the Bulletin of Economic Research.

Visit: TheMoneyIllusion

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