Cuz when they have to go on actual news shows as opposed to Fox shows and answer semi-serious questions about vague and rickety plans, everything falls apart, that's why.
Romney made a few errors on Meet the Press, among them criticizing the summer 2011 budget deal his own vice-presidential candidate voted for. Stop and think about that for a second. He knows very well, or sure should, that Ryan voted for the sequestration deal. And yet he denounces the vote, says Republlicans should not have gone along. Wow.
Of course, maybe he did it because like the Soviet commissars of years past, they're just trying to erase that little business from Ryan's history. While Mitt was being confused on MTP, Ryan was over on Face the Nation just, as usual, lying:
O’DONNELL: Now you’re criticizing the President for those same defense cuts you’re voting for and called a victory.
RYAN: No, no — I have to correct on you this, Norah. I voted for a mechanism that says the sequester will occur if we don’t cut $1.2 trillion in government. … We can get into this nomenclature; I voted for the Budget Control Act. But the Obama Administration proposed $478 billion in defense cuts. We don’t agree with that, our budget rejected that, and then on top of that is another $500 billion in defense cuts in the sequester.
O’DONNELL: Right. A trillion dollars in defense spending, and you voted for it!
RYAN: No, Norah. I voted for the Budget Control Act.
O’DONNELL: That included defense spending!
RYAN: Norah, you’re mistaken.
She is not mistaken. Here's the roll call. How do you do something like that? There is something pathological about this guy, which we'll explore in greater depth later this week.
But the cake-taker yesterday was Romney's endorsement of certain parts of Obamacare. The guy spends weeks, years, saying he'll repeal Obamacare on his first day in office. And now suddenly, hey wait a second, I didn't mean everything in it, never meant that at all. I'll repeal everything except the parts that swing voters might like. What does he think, somehow only centrists will hear what he says on Meet the Press? I'd bet his thought process wasn't too far removed from that. "On Fox, I say repeal the whole thing. But here on NBC, I'll say this other thing." Leadership.
At aide came out dutifully later in the day Sunday to note once again that he didn't really mean it. His position is that he will make sure people with preexisting conditions get care as long as they have had continuous coverage throughout the period of their illness. It's a key distinction. I have explained it before. Kevin Drum explains it well here. It's worth knowing the difference, because I bet you'll hear some conservatives trying to say there's no real difference between the Romney and Obama positions, which is (prepare yourself) a lie.
It was a disastrous Sunday for them, and it's important to note why it was disastrous. It wasn't disastrous because they gave the wrong answers. It was disastrous because their actions vs. their words are hypocritical and indefensible (in Ryan's case) or because their plans are so vague and self-contradicting that reasonably precise questioning leads inevitably to meltdown.
I would imagine it's back to Fox for a while! Far less danger lurks there.