Ezra's got a nicely measured take on Romney's going away gaffe.
The last time Romney’s comments to his donors leaked, he was telling them about the 47 percent of Americans who don’t pay taxes, refuse to take responsibility for their lives, and will support Obama come hell or high water. These new comments are continuous with those: Romney really does appear to believe that there’s a significant portion of the electorate that’s basically comprised of moochers.
That’s Romney’s political cosmology: The Democrats bribe the moochers with health care and green cards. The Republicans try to free the makers through tax cuts and deregulation. Politics isn’t a conflict between two reasonable perspectives on how to best encourage growth and high-living standards. It’s a kind of reverse-Marxist clash between those who produce and those who take, and the easiest way to tell one from the other is to see who they vote for.
The release of the 47% comments was the defining moment of this election and remains a central fissure in the future of the Grand Old Party. I hope more Republicans join Bobby Jindal in rejecting this divise picture of the electorate in favor of a conservatism for all Americans.