Liberal schadenfreude is about to reach overdose levels. Just when you thought the dead horse of Mitt Romney's campaign had been beaten more than enough — and most savagely by members of his own party — Dave Wasserman at Cook Political Report projects that the final count of the popular vote, which is still ongoing, will show Romney winning 47 percent of the electorate. In addition to proving that Obama handily won the popular vote, the final tally makes Romney the official candidate of the 47 percent — a delicious irony, liberals say, given that Romney infamously claimed that Obama was the candidate of the 47 percent of Americans who "believe they are victims" and are "dependent on government."
By all accounts, Romney's "47 percent" remarks constituted one of the greatest self-inflicted wounds from a candidate who had no shortage of them. "The quote didn't, on its own, kill Romney's chances," says John Flowers at MSNBC. "But for many voters, it unmistakably conveyed the worldview of a man unable to see that a member of the middle class or the working poor might be just as hard-working, just as determined, as someone from his own privileged demographic."
The fact that Romney made his "47 percent" remarks at a private fundraiser, unaware that he was being filmed surreptitiously, only bolstered the impression that these were his real views, as well as the views of his party. After a "campaign of unprecedented dishonesty and lack of transparency," says Greg Sargent at The Washington Post, "Romney himself unmasked his own apparent beliefs and the broader ideological implications of the larger GOP agenda and the ideas driving it."
Losing presidential candidates always get piled on, but Romney appears to be getting hammered more than most, with unflattering images circulating on the internet of the entourage-less Romney pumping his own gas. Perhaps he would have won a little more sympathy if he hadn't doubled down on his "47 percent" comments a few days after the election. "In a post-election phone call, he regaled his biggest contributors, the fattest of cats, with the notion that Barack Obama won the election by giving 'gifts' to minorities and women," says Joe Klein at TIME. "Has there ever been a less gracious presidential loser than Mitt Romney?"