Poor Mitt Romney. His whole reason for running (when he's not wandering off into culture war issues or making a hash of foreign policy) is that he knows the secret formula for making the economy grow. And yet with seven weeks before the election he still hasn't even managed to convince some prominent folks on the right that he's what they're looking for.
"We'll see if he'll be a progrowth president," Chris Chocola, president of the conservative Club for Growth, told reporters at a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. "I think he has potential to exceed expectations. I do. But it's a mixed bag with Romney and that's his problem is that people really don't know."
When I asked him what the expectations he mentioned are, he remained equivocal. "They're uncertain," he said. "That's the thing is that we don't really know. That's the knock against Romney is that you don't really know how he'll serve. … Our expectations are uncertainty."
Hardly a ringing endorsement, though he did say that he liked uncertain Romney better than Obama: "We want him to win, we're all for him, he's the only choice we've got."
So is there anything the Republican candidate can do to mollify Chocola and his crew of Romney's conservative cred? "Not before the election," Chocola said. "If he's elected and he exceeds our expectations then we're all for that."