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EDITOR OF REDSTATE

The Next President

What a difference a speech makes. As Ari Fleischer noted on CNN, the same media that was cool with the shallow vapidity of hope and change in 2008 is now demanding specifics from Mitt Romney. Last night in Tampa, he gave the one set of specifics he needed to give — a course correction.The Democrats are screaming that it is a return to the 1950’s, when unemployment was less than it is now. That is a talking point. Mitt Romney made a very simple case for himself last night: the President promised the oceans and the earth. He’s just promising to help Americans. It was a modest plan with bold implications.The speech was the best speech Mitt Romney has ever given. The material might not have been the greatest, but Romney himself delivered it with more substance than the text. The story of the rose will resonate. The desire for parents to have their kids piled up back on the bed will resonate. Mitt Romney will resonate.Last night on MSNBC, viewers were treated to a spectacle akin to animals flinging poo in a zoo. They were unhinged. It was like Baghdad Bob had taken over. That the left is in such a meltdown is a very good sign for the GOP.Now a word on Clint Eastwood.It was entertaining, but it was weird. Many Democrats are scratching their heads wondering what the heck that was. I’ll tell you what it was. It was the unscripted conversation of an independent voter coming to terms with the end of the Obama love affair. That speech may not resonate inside the beltway, but it resonates in Ohio and Florida and Wisconsin and other swing states. Clint Eastwood made people comfortable laughing at the President and Joe Biden, the great intellect of the Democratic Party, a smile with a body behind it.I thought it was bizarre. But as a friend pointed out, lots of politically astute people thought Carly Fiorina’s now infamous demonsheep ad was bizarre and it turned out to resonate with people because the bizarreness and unfamiliarity with what they were seeing made them pay attention.Clint Eastwood did that and it worked.But let’s be honest. By the time Marco Rubio was a quarter of the way through his speech, Eastwood didn’t matter too much. Rubio hit it out of the park. It was the perfect set up to Mitt Romney.

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