* Nia Malika-Henderson reports: Mitt Romney today staged an attack on Obama at a factory that closed ... under George W. Bush.
The Romney camp’s response: It would have opened again by now if it weren’t for Obama. This perfectly captures the Romney argument that, okay, yes, the economy is improving under Obama, but not fast enough.
* Or, as Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom puts it:
“The fact that it struggled through the last three years is not the fault of Barack Obama’s predecessor, it’s the fault of this administration and the failure of their policies to really get this economy going again,” he said. Fehrnstrom said that Obama “cannot take any credit for any success on the jobs front.”
“None at all,” he added.
As always, much of Romney’s case is premised on the hope that the American people have developed mass amnesia about how awful a crisis Obama inherited.
* Steve Benen responds to Fehrnstrom.
* Would Obama actually benefit if the campaign shaped up as a genuine debate over his and Romney’s true economic visions? Jed Lewison makes an interesting case against the conventional wisdom.
* Obama re-elect reality check of the day: Ron Brownstein parses all the latest polls and nails down Obama’s problem:
All of them show Obama largely holding two pillars of the modern Democratic coalition-minority voters and college-educated white women. But all show him facing significant erosion among blue-collar white men, and in most surveys he’s also confronting at least some loss among college-plus white men and non-college white women. It will be difficult for Obama to ever establish a comfortable advantage while he faces such entrenched resistance from so much of the white electorate.
* Lawrence Downes gets it right: Romney is caught in a Gordion Knot of Kris Kobach’s making.
* Nice David Bernstein riff on Romney’s Fenway Park fib and what it tells us about his two modes of lying, the Branding Lie and the Zelig Lie.
* Mike Tomasky demolishes the latest round of centrist Grand Bargain fetishing, making the key point that every time Obama tries to meet the GOP halfway and gets rebuffed, the center lurches further right.
* Josh Eidelson explains why labor is backing the underdog Dem as their best bet against Scott Walker. Perhaps it’s because she thinks being as pro-labor as possible is a virtue in this fight.
* Dems are seizing on the news of 4,300 Wisconsin jobs lost in March to press their case for Walker’s recall, which centers on two words: Jobs and corruption.
* Indeed, while the improving national picture was supposed to boost Walker’s chances of survival, unions are emphasizing the disconnect between national good news and Wisconsin’s lag behind other states.
* And a nice take from David Dayen on the new civil disobedience campaign against Obama’s punt on the executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating based on sexual orientation:
What a terrible decision made by the White House. For some reason, they thought that declining the executive order would give them less of a headache. Now, they will feel the wrath of an organized activist constituency, one they have been hitting up for money in a big way over the past several months. You can say that wealthy LGBT donors have made up for the relatively smaller funds coming in from Wall Street. But all of that gets put into peril now.
I hope the marginal benefit of not pissing off homophobes in swing states who weren’t likely to vote for the President anyway was worth it.
Good move, White House. What else?