If I were Mitt Romney, I would not want to lose Peggy Noonan. She strikes me as the kind of thoughtful conservative who has great sway with other thoughtful conservatives. I base this on many casual conversations with friends over the years who are conservative Republicans. Seeking common ground, they will say, "Did you read Peggy Noonan? I thought she had a good point today."And often I agree that she does have good points, even when I don't necessarily agree with them.

Her stature as a reasonable conservative makes her judgment of Romney's behavior in recent days quite significant. After the verbal equivalent of rolling her eyes at Romney's unsteady and unwise reaction to the crisis in Egypt and Libya, Ms. Noonan said this in a Wall Street Journal video: "Romney looked WEAK today.… At one point, he had a certain slight grimace on his face when he was taking tough questions from the reporters. And I thought, 'He looks like Richard Nixon.' "

I'm not sure my conservative friends will praise this particular opinion to me, but I know they will think about it.