The weekend's big think piece from Politico pundits-in-chief Jim Vanderhei and Mike Allen pronounced that in contrast to the Obama campaign's narrow-casting appeals to particular constituencies, the Romney strategy down the home stretch would be single-issue: "Romney, armed with more dismal jobs numbers, will run a one-size-fits-all campaign, wrapped around the message that the economy is bad, Obama is to blame and that change of leadership is absolutely essential."
But Politico's own messaging was messed up by Ginger Gibson's report on the candidate's Saturday talk to a crowd in Virginia Beech, headlined "Mitt Romney's Virginia speech heavy on religion." With the grand old man of the Religious Right, Pat Robertson, seated directly behind him, Romney dilated on the importance of "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance and the Republican Platform, proclaiming, "We're a nation bestowed by God." Bestowed on whom he did not say.
Whatever, this didn't exactly seem like the one-size-fits-all message advertised by V&A. You might even imagine that it involved some special targeting of evangelicals, whose degree of enthusiasm for a Romney presidency might be more in question than inside-the-beltway wisdom currently allows. Unfortunately, however, hardly anyone except very possibly the Romney campaign's internal pollsters is bothering to gauge evangelical sentiment at the moment, so it's impossible for the rest of us to know what the heck's going on with them.
For now, though, I'm going with Reporting Politico, not Naval-Gazing Politico.