The Very Serious Person Primary

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TPM Reader JA chimes in with his take. Not sure I completely agree. But it is true that if Wolf Blitzer ain’t buying then you’re going to have a hard time selling anyone:

I think your two most recent posts on the editor’s blog are related to each other in an important way.

MH asks “who are the voters this will affect?” I agree that this issue alone will probably not swing many votes. But it might swing the media and their coverage of Mitt Romney.

Right now Mitt Romney is saying a great deal of things that are questionably factual at best and downright lies at worst, and is mostly getting away with it. But I think the media could turn on him if he doesn’t do more to condemn these types of remarks.

Until recently, birtherism in the MSM has mostly been dealt with by saying something along the lines of “Mr. Obama has produced his birth certificate showing he was born in Hawaii.” But as you exhibited, Wolf Blitzer just told Donald Trump he was “beginning to sound a little ridiculous.” Of course, Donald Trump has been sounding very ridiculous for years, but if Wolf Blitzer (a Very Serious Person if there ever was one) is beginning to recognize that and do so publicly, this may be the first step towards the MSM either demanding that Romney condemn Trump or else turning on him. And I believe that once they turn on him for birtherism, they’ll turn on him in general. And the lies, distortions, and flip-flops that have until now been treated with kid gloves could suddenly become banner headlines.

To be clear, I think if it comes anywhere close to that, Romney will just condemn Trump. But the reason why will not be because he’s losing voters over the issue, but because he’s losing the media.

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David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.
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