Jeffrey Lord of the American Spectator vents:
We don't do endorsements in this space. To update Douglas MacArthur, we try and focus on conservatism—The Cause, and The Cause and The Cause.
So it is somewhat amusing to see the Washington Post's Officially Liberal-Approved Conservative Jennifer Rubin's constant contortions to package all things Nelson Rockefeller—er—Mitt Romney as the latest in conservative fashion. Mr. Rocke—sorry … Romney may well be the GOP nominee, and if so we wish him well in ending the Obama era.
But to pretend that Rubin's continual swipes at others (Newt Gingrich, Herman Cain, Rick Perry) are anything other than her inability to control a serious case of Establishment-media approved Romneyphilia is not something that will be allowed by her readers.
I have my differences with "The Cause." What those differences don't do is drive me into the arms of a contemptible creature like former Gov. Mitt Romney. I suspect that, intellectually, Rubin is more simpatico with The Cause than I am—and yet she shills for the "electable" Romney. (Likewise, she vehemently defended Sarah Palin until the former Alaska governor became a Washington laughingstock.)
Somehow, Rubin has managed to earn herself a reputation as a hardnosed, objective conservative. Take this Politico lovefest, for example:
Rubin, caustic and single-minded, has proven immune to the usual approaches from Perry's staff: She can't be schmoozed, can't be convinced. They respond diligently, if glumly, to emails that arrive in Austin like hostage notes, and often echo or prefigure former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney's attacks on him.
"It's just very high level saturation bombing from our perspective—we don't know why," said a Perry ally, who said the campaign has given up on swaying her. "It's just duck and cover."
Almost any other reporter, or even partisan blogger, might have pulled a punch on the man who seemed, for a moment, likely to be her party's presidential nominee, and perhaps the next president. But Rubin, 49, who published her first piece of journalism in 2007 after a career doing legal work for Hollywood studios, makes no pretense of either formal neutrality or party loyalty.
I love that "echo or prefigure" line. Which is it—echo or prefigure? My money's on the former. Romney's people whisper, off the record, into the ears of many Beltway reporters, and Rubin can be counted on to deliver the attacks on the record.
Such reporting can be called a lot of things.
Objective isn't one of them.