This is not broadly remarked upon, but have you noticed that Romney's favorability ratings, after heading the right direction in spring and early summer, are going southward again? This CNN survey from last week is representative of the stuff I've seen:
According to the Pew Research Center survey, 37% of respondents said they hold a favorable view of the presumptive GOP nominee, compared to 41% in June.
In its findings, Pew noted that July marked the sixth consecutive month in a row in which more people held an unfavorable view of Romney than a favorable view.
The poll shows that the former Massachusetts governor's rating significantly improved between March and June, when other GOP contenders dropped out of the race and the Republican base united around Romney.
Since then, however, the candidate has struggled to maintain his image, according to the poll, as he battles head-to-head against President Barack Obama's fully-loaded re-election campaign.
Remember: In the spring, when he was locked in his mud-match with Rick Santorum and pandering to the right and outspending poor Rick seven to one in all those states, he was viewed rather poorly. Then all the experts said, well, now that that's over, and he can move toward the center and he's not in a daily pissing match, views will of him will improve.
And they did. Until...until what? We don't know for sure, but I doubt it's anything specific. I think it's just general exposure, and people just don't like the guy.
This is Obama's ace in the hole. Well, one of a couple aces in the hole, including the electoral map, which I write about below, in case you missed it. Now it's not as if Democratic surrogates need to go around saying "Obama is likeable, and Romney is not." This is a classic case of show, don't tell. Obama should just be likeable and empathetic. He should go into peoples' living rooms and kitchens and do some events like that to emphasize the fact that, while he ain't Bill Clinton, he knows how to speak to regular people without insulting them or their mores or their cookies. That will show the contrast, and voters will get it.