BuzzFeed says the Romney campaign has finally made the terrible realization that they're not going to win by running on the economy, and so now they're trying to find some ground to fight on.
Romney and — particularly — his running mate Rep. Paul Ryan, have spent a week road-testing alternatives, going positive and going negative, swinging at the president on everything from faith to foreign policy. The new efforts mark a shift from a summer of fruitless discipline and a convention in which attempts to present a friendly, moderate tone trumped any policy substance. And campaign planners said their moves mark a new campaign consensus.
Ryan himself has emerged as a central player in this calculation, making the case internally for a clearer conservative policy message. One high level Republican with ties to the campaign told BuzzFeed that Ryan was chaffing at Boston constraining him from talking about and defending his policy ideas from Democratic attacks. Ryan wanted to be "unleashed," the Republican said.
The problem with this is that Ryan's policies are all disastrous in the polls. Nobody believed the story that Republicans want to save Medicare with coupons. Nobody wants to sacrifice popular government programs to deal with the deficit. I can't think of a single teabagger issue that is popular with the general electorate.
Stepping further back, this is all starting to sound like a repeat to me. Conservatives are anonymously slagging on the Republican candidate in news stories, private fears that the campaign is flailing are being made public, and the young hotshot VP choice is begging to go more conservative. I swear I've seen this story before.