A recent USA Today/Gallup poll showed Romney with higher marks on fixing the deficit, jobs, taxes and the economy. But Obama soared on personal traits — maintaining a 30-point advantage in likability, and better numbers on honesty, trust and empathy.
When John Glenn was running for president, the former astronaut elicited greater applause when he came onstage than when he left. Romney started out off-putting and now makes Willy Loman look like prom king. Obama is introverted and graceful; Romney is introverted and awkward.
Romney advisers attributed his free fall in the polls to brass-knuckle Obama ads and summer doldrums rather than Mitt dullness. Maybe voters think Romney is already so sheathed in secret bubbles — Bain, Mormonism, his stint as governor of a liberal state — that electing him to the biggest bubble of all, the White House, would not be a good idea.
Even Republicans seem to have given up defending Mitt’s charms. As John Boehner memorably put it, “The American people probably aren’t going to fall in love with Mitt Romney.”