The devil’s not in the details; the devil is the details

Progressives are having a lot of fun watching Mitt Romney avoid taking a stance on President Obama’s decision to refrain from deporting young people who were illegally brought into the U.S. as children. It reinforces a theme that has included hammering Romney for failing to provide details of his plans to reinvigorate the economy.

But there’s a lesson to be learned from New Jersey and the state’s 2009 gubernatorial election. Democrats criticized then-candidate Chris Christie for being vague about how he would fix the N.J. economy. As we know, Christie won anyway and now has emerged as a national figure.

Voters apparently were not troubled by Christie’s lack of specifics. He took advantage of the fact that, when the economy is bad, the man on the top gets the blame. It may not be fair, but that’s the way it is.

Before the Obama campaign and the president’s supporters get too giddy when Romney stumbles and makes gaffes, they would be well-served to recall the message that James Carville drove home during Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign. It was the economy then – and it’s still the economy today.

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