Karl Rove generates polarizing political headlines

Published: Thursday, Nov. 1 2012 1:44 p.m. MDT

As the presidential race enters its last days, Republican kingmaker Karl Rove continues churning out weekly op-ed pieces for the Wall Street Journal that slather optimistic praise on Mitt Romney's campaign, heap foreboding criticism on Barack Obama's re-election bid, or both.

Rove's most recent editorial, "Sifting the numbers for a winner," appeared in Thursday's Wall Street Journal — and it should surprise nobody that the article forecasts victory for Romney.

"It comes down to numbers," Rove wrote. "And in the final days of this presidential race, from polling data to early voting, they favor Mitt Romney. … In addition to the data, the anecdotal and intangible evidence — from crowd sizes to each side's closing arguments — give the sense that the odds favor Mr. Romney. They do. My prediction: Sometime after the cock crows on the morning of Nov. 7, Mitt Romney will be declared America's 45th president. Let's call it 51 percent (to) 48 percent, with Mr. Romney carrying at least 279 Electoral College votes, probably more."

The Christian Science Monitor succinctly summarized the scope of Rove's influence in an August article: "he runs Crossroads GPS and American Crossroads, two political organizations that could spend $1 billion combined to promote Republicans during the coming election, (and) Bloomberg Businessweek magazine recently dubbed him 'King Karl' in a cover article."

Earlier this month, Politico business reporter Kenneth P. Vogel offered a plausible connection linking Rove's steady stream of Wall Street Journal op-ed articles to his affiliations with Crossroads GPS and American Crossroads: "Conservative super PACs and outside groups face the very real possibility they’ll have spent $1 billion and failed to elect Mitt Romney or deliver a GOP Senate. … So the operatives running the super PACs and nonprofits are scrambling to prove they made a difference in any way they can. They’re positioning themselves to claim credit for successes, dodge blame for failures and prove that they’re not one-trick ponies that can only do narrowly targeted advertising."

Prior to his latest article, Rove penned four op-ed articles for the Wall Street Journal throughout October:

Can we believe the presidential polls? (Oct. 4)

The dividends of Romney's debate victory (Oct. 11)

Obama won the debate but is losing the argument (Oct. 18)

Strategies for the stretch run to Nov. 6 (Oct. 25)

Jamshid Ghazi Askar is a graduate of BYU's J. Reuben Clark Law School and member of the Utah State Bar. Contact him at jaskar@desnews.com or 801-236-6051.

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