Charles Lane: Why Romney Lost the Black Vote

Roundup: Media's Take

Charles Lane is an editorial writer for the Washington Post.

...On July 10, 2012, George Romney’s son Mitt stood before the NAACP’s annual convention as the soon-to-be Republican nominee for an office his father had coveted in vain: president. “If you want a president who will make things better in the African American community,” he declared, “you are looking at him.” He invoked his father’s legacy.

The audience responded with catcalls....

The NAACP didn’t boo Mitt Romney because he is especially hostile toward civil rights, much less a racist — or even because the NAACP’s delegates thought of him that way.

It happened because the delegates could not easily forget the intervening political history, in which the GOP had evolved from the party of George Romney into the party of white backlash. They could not forget it, and Mitt Romney’s personal heritage was not sufficient to trump it....

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