The Mitt Romney campaign apparently expects that the American voter will have forgotten about the legacy of the Bush White House by the time November rolls around. But I don't think that legacy is dead and gone. To the contrary. In the New York Times, Paul Krugman picked up on the theme:
Just how stupid does Mitt Romney think we are? If you’ve been following his campaign from the beginning, that’s a question you have probably asked many times.The problem with Marco Rubio is that every trail to Rubio leads from the Bush legacy. It is too bad that Florida media won't pick up the theme; a point Eyeonmiami has noted before. Instead, Rubio is called "too inexperienced". On closer investigation, that would surely come if Romney chooses Rubio, count on the resurrection of the facts.
But the question was raised with particular force last week, when Mr. Romney tried to make a closed drywall factory in Ohio a symbol of the Obama administration’s economic failure. It was a symbol, all right — but not in the way he intended.
First of all, many reporters quickly noted a point that Mr. Romney somehow failed to mention: George W. Bush, not Barack Obama, was president when the factory in question was closed. Does the Romney campaign expect Americans to blame President Obama for his predecessor’s policy failure?
Yes, it does. Mr. Romney constantly talks about job losses under Mr. Obama. Yet all of the net job loss took place in the first few months of 2009, that is, before any of the new administration’s policies had time to take effect. So the Ohio speech was a perfect illustration of the way the Romney campaign is banking on amnesia, on the hope that voters don’t remember that Mr. Obama inherited an economy that was already in free fall.