It's getting to the stage on the political calendar when I'm writing LESS and actually doing MORE, which is one reason I have largely ignored the Republican convention.
Another reason is: I don't really like conventions. I trace this to the childhood trauma of a family vacation in 1972, back in the caveman days of only three channels of TV, and all three were doing gavel to gavel convention. I can't remember if it was Nixon's re-coronation or the endless Democratic VP roll call, but it was deadly dull for an eight year old.
My interest in politics waxed later, and Hunter Thompson later taught me how interesting `72 really was in the greatest book ever written, but the significance of conventions waned. Mike Murphy sums up some of the many reasons we should slay this dinosaur. That said, yeah, I probably will watch Mitt's speech.
Another problem is they're simply too late, with next week's Democratic convention setting a new record. I said it before: If we're going to have the conventions this late, the third parties should get a time extension to get on the ballot.
Which would definitely help Gary Johnson. Ballot Access News has a good summary about the arguments in the effort to strike Johnson from the Iowa ballot. Later coverage noted that at least one challenger is a Romney staffer, which should surprise exactly no one. Perhaps they'll use the same "well, he didn't technically qualify, but he tried" legal logic they used to leave Joe "Fibbin' Fisherman" Seng on the primary ballot. No word on the other ballot challenge, against independent WTF candidate Jerry Litzel. The Johnson decision is due tomorrow.
In the big picture, a half a point for the Libertarians in Iowa dings Romney much worse than Obama, and Romney has tougher national math. William Galston has the guide to which states to watch early on election night while Mark Halperin rejects the premise: "(Romney) can’t win this piece-by-piece. There’s just too many states where
he’s behind where the President is strong. I think it’s going to be a
wave. I don’t think he can cherry pick the electoral college at this
Ronald Brownstein offers a different kind of math: