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Thu Nov 8, 2012, 09:46 AM

Romneyworld Reckoning Begins



"BOSTON — Advisers to Mitt Romney insisted Wednesday that they were surprised by the scale of their loss to President Barack Obama, while big-time GOP donors griped about the campaign’s unflinching confidence in the final stretch.

"As results began to stream in Tuesday night, prominent Romney supporters in Boston tried to stay positive, reassuring themselves that there was still a path to the White House. But dejection quickly turned to anger a day after an Electoral College rout that shocked many who had heard self-assured projections about voter enthusiasm and turnout in private conference calls and meetings in the campaign’s final stretch.

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"Romney supporters point to a series of brash statements made by advisers that seem out of touch with reality in retrospect. Inside the Beltway, Republicans trained their fire on senior Romney advisers like Ed Gillespie and political director Rich Beeson for appearances on last weekend’s Sunday shows. Gillespie said the electoral map was expanding, and Beeson predicted a 300 electoral vote win for Romney.

“There were a lot of Republicans who were on calls that the campaign was having led to believe we had shots in Pennsylvania and Minnesota,” one Republican operative supporting Romney said. “I think Republicans are split right now between confused and shocked, and also I think they are wondering did the Romney campaign have numbers we didn’t have.”

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Multiple Romney sources buzzed about one number in particular: 15 percent. According to exit polls, that’s the share of African-Americans who voted in Ohio this year. In 2008, the black percentage of the electorate was 11 percent. In Virginia and Florida, exit polls showed the same share of African-Americans turned out as four years ago, something that GOP turnout models did not anticipate.

“We didn’t think they’d turn out more of their base vote than they did in 2008, but they smoked us,” said one Romney operative. “It’s unbelievable that that they turned out more from the African-American community than in 2008. Somehow they got ‘em to vote.”
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"Inside tight-knit Romneyworld — where many of the GOP nominee’s senior aides have worked together since Romney’s time as Massachusetts governor — there was a sense Tuesday that the White House was within reach. Over the last few weeks, especially after Romney’s strong Denver debate performance, some staffers were openly speculation about jobs they might nab in a Romney administration and discussed what the shape of the transition effort. By Wednesday, many were looking for work but taking the long view.

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And here is when the mic is dropped -

Romney’s team believed that it would be hard to lose if they won independents, but it happened. They said they thought they could perform as well with men as Obama did with women, but they didn’t. They thought there would be fewer young voters in 2008, but turnout was roughly on par.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1112/83549_Page2.html#ixzz2BdsmzAAv

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