January 29th, 2015
Romney Cheerleader Hugh Hewitt: Always Wrong On Everything
Hugh Hewitt really, really likes Mitt Romney.
In 2007 he wrote the book A Mormon In The White House?, which was described by Reed Business Information as “an efficient and effective exercise in political hagiography.” For a long time, Hewitt was the top Romney cheerleader in the conservative movement, always able to see the silver lining behind Romney’s doomed-to-fail 2008 presidential campaign.
He’s probably been surpassed by the Washington Post‘s delightfully hacktastic Jennifer Rubin in service of the Massachusetts millionaire, but Hewitt is still out there, toiling at the second tier of conservative talk below Hannity/Limbaugh/Beck/Huckabee in defense of his man Mitt.
What I personally dislike about Hewitt is the way he uses the appearance of certainty to ignore reality. Everyone in punditry uses a sense of certainty around their assessments – yours truly included – but Hewitt has this really arrogant way of saying something absolutely devoid of fact to predict the future, and is more often than not spectacularly wrong about it.
Even conservatives began to tune out Hewitt during the 2008 campaign. In the closing weeks of the race he began posting online brochures from Trinity Baptist’s Sunday services, doing his part to conflate the views of Rev. Jeremiah Wright with Barack Obama. Even his diehard readers at the time commented that they had no idea what the point of the exercise was, and that it made Hewitt look even sillier than usual. He no longer has comments on his blog posts.
Here’s a look back at some spectacular wrongness by Hugh Hewitt, almost all in service of shining Mitt Romney’s shoes.
First, you should know that like many media conservatives, Hewitt did not like John McCain, and even worse in the early part of 2008, McCain was standing between Hewitt’s Beloved and the Republican nomination. So for a good amount of time, Hewitt was constantly trashing McCain.
In January of 2008, Hewitt explained how even though he had won the New Hampshire primary, it was impossible for McCain to convince conservative Republicans to make him their nominee.
McCain won in New Hampshire because of independents, and is neck-and-neck with Romney in Michigan because of independents and Democrats. He lost Republicans by a landslide in Iowa, and he lost Republicans in New Hampshire to Romney, as he will in Michigan tomorrow. Only the MSM’s studied indifference to these facts keeps McCain’s hope and alleged momentum alive.
But GOP voters have already spoken and will continue to do so between now and Texas and Ohio. Their rejection of McCain will surprise the pundits, but not the GOP.
McCain, of course, continued to win Republican primary votes as Romney had to continuously talk about how he had won “silver” by coming behind McCain.
This didn’t dissuade Hewitt, who continued to dig for the pony under the pile of excrement being generated by Romney’s campaign. February 2008:
If the swing towards Romney in California continues, he will emerge from Tuesday’s contest in a solid second place with a new narrative and a renewed debate about the race –can Romney surpass McCain in Ohio and Texas in March? The rapidly fading Huck would simply disappear, as he is doing in many places where the obvious has already registered: A vote for Huckabee is a vote for McCain.
Hewitt then began pushing the idea of a “Rally to Romney” where conservatives would coalesce around Romney as their chosen alternative to McCain. It didn’t work. Romney dropped out.
Resigned to backing McCain, Hewitt then began to use his powers of dumb to convince his flock that Obama just couldn’t win nationally. March 2008:
Senator McCain can and will beat Senator Obama because –not so deep down– the country knows we are in a life-or-death struggle with the jihadists and we cannot turn the country’s safety over to a reality-denying three-year senator.
By May of 2008, Hewitt was telling his readers that no, seriously it was impossible for Obama to win:
Does anyone really believe that there isn’t another major explosion coming in the Middle East? Can you imagine Barack Obama superintending it?
Hillary, yes. Obama, no. The Democrats have a chance to reclaim the White House, but the hard left of the party would rather have the party than 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
In August of 2008, veepstakes was in the air. And guess who Hewitt wanted McCain to pick?
McCain can indeed win the presidency with an excellent campaign in the fall, the first major decision of which will be the veep selection. Since it is obvious that he truly wants to be president, and because the risk to the country is so large from his losing, I expect McCain will pick one of these two men and probably Romney on the Monday after the Democrats leave Denver.
Wrong, again. This was of course the moment in U.S. history where John McCain forever tarnished his legacy with the pick of Sarah Palin. Recent events, however, seem to validate choosing her over Romney.
Fully on board with McCain-Palin, Hewitt transitioned into the argument that really you guys, Obama isn’t winning. September 2008:
It is already clear that ten states hold the keys to the White House, and that McCain and Palin are doing very well in two of them, Florida and Ohio, while Obama struggles to hold on to blue states Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin and McCain tries to keep Colorado, Iowa, Nevada and New Mexico red.
McCain did so “well” in Florida and Ohio that they were called for Obama just a few minutes after the polls closed. Every single state Hewitt said Obama was “struggl[ing]” with voted for him, while McCain lost every state Hewitt said he was trying to keep red.
In late September of 2008, Hewitt again explained how it was just impossible for Obama to win.
Voters always want a change after eight years, but to Obama? Not only is he almost inconceivably inexperienced for the toughest job in the world, he’s got a long record of terrible judgments about people –Ayers, Rezko, and Wright to name the big three– and hist first big decision turns out to be Slow Joe “no more coal plants in America!” Biden. The challenges at home and the crises abroad have left a very sober electorate that knows well that Obama is in way over his head, but the MSM’s deep investment in Obama’s success has kept him afloat since Operation Chaos began the process of unmasking his many weaknesses.
A month before election day, Hewitt was explaining how McCain was on the path to “close and win.”
So, despite the rapture of college students and the registration of the homeless in Ohio, the common sense of Americans will override curiosity about Barack Obama and infatuation with his celebrity, and trust John McCain to pilot the country for the next four years.
Then he began to detect a “shift” towards McCain:
With anxiety levels sky high and no doubt as to the hard left agenda that would be pursued by Obama-Pelosi-Reid, the race will remain close and could still shift dramatically towards McCain. As the reality of the need for crisis management experience in the Oval Office rises, so will McCain.
Lest you believe conservative conspiracy theories about polling are a new phenomenon, here’s Hugh Hewitt the day before election day in 2008:
The attempt to demoralize the GOP through the gigged polling and the triumphalism of Obama hasn’t worked as the counter-theme of the volatility of the polls and the overwhelming bias of the MSM –now cemented in beyond argument by the Los Angeles Times’ censorship of the Obama-Khalidi (and Ayers?) video– has kept McCain’s supporters focused on the 96 hour effort to turn out voters.
For the record, Barack Obama won the election by 7% and a margin of 192 electoral votes. Shift indeed.
So here is Hewitt on Tuesday, claiming that polling is once again to be questioned when it shows his man Mitt trailing President Obama.
Gee, I wonder how that will work out?
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