Unlikely as it might seem, Mitt Romney actually put it best.
“I have looked at what happens to anybody in this country who loses as the nominee of their party,” he says. “They become a loser for life.”
This is from the documentary “Mitt,” which was released this year and covers Mitt Romney’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns.
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Romney was aware that if he ran for the nomination in 2008 and failed to get it, this would not be fatal. Numerous failed nominees have gone on to get the nomination in future contests.
But if one gets the nomination and then fails to win the presidency, that is a different story.
Republican Thomas Dewey did it, losing in both 1944 and 1948. Democrat Adlai Stevenson did it, losing in both 1952 and 1956. And Richard Nixon did it, losing the presidency in 1960, but winning it in 1968.
But this is ancient history in political terms. In modern times, if you get your party’s nomination and then lose the general election, nobody wants to hear from you again.
“Mike Dukakis is mowing lawns,” Romney says.
But Romney entered the fray anyway, losing the nomination in 2008, winning the nomination in 2012, but losing the general election.
So Romney should be, by his own analysis, a “loser for life.”