Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice leaves after her speech on the third day of the 2012 Republican National Convention. The president she worked for, George W. Bush, did not appear at the convention. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Republicans insisted that President Barack Obama couldn’t win a second term by blaming George W. Bush for the lackluster economy. The 43rd president left office nearly four years ago, and blaming high unemployment and stagnant growth wouldn’t fly with voters in 2012, they argued.
But according to at least one Republican pollster, this strategy worked exceedingly well — thanks in large part to an assist from Mitt Romney and his campaign team. Yes, the Republicans encountered challenges with voter demographics that aren’t going away, acknowledged David Winston in his post-election survey and analysis of the presidential contest. Yes, the Democrats’ voter turnout operation is significantly more advanced than the GOP’s.