I never thought the GOP would nominate a candidate less appealing than John McCain-I didn't think it was possible-but they managed to accomplish just that.
It's damning but not for the reasons you cite. It's damning because it is obvious Republican vote elimination.
Romney and GOPe stomped on the conservative base, took away any input from them at the national convention and from conventions in the future, and the conservative base stomped back and left the presidential line blank on the ballot. I watched that convention process from beginning to end and knew Romney, Sununu, Romeny’s lawyer and national chairman (GOPe) had shot themselves in the heart.
I think the real damning thing is the GOP GOTV incompetence. Do some google searches on the Obama campaign GOTV methods. They had people by the thousands at malls, outside movie theaters, along strip malls, college campuses, parks, etc etc in not just swing states but very targeted swing counties registering people to vote and persuading them with whatever liberal BS they had in their GOTV manuals.
On top of that, they had massive databases of people in specific neighborhoods and counties that never voted before. They didn’t just reinforce their base and try to persuade independents, they CREATED new voters by comparing registration rolls to other databases of eligible but non-registered citizens, getting them on the phone or knocking on their door, quickly analyzing what issue is most important to that person, checking their manual and immediately spouting the talking point that would appeal to that issue....bam, another new dem voter.
Rest assured, liberal policies and issues did not win this election IMO since policy elections are usually wave elections like the 2010 rejection of obamacare. This was a get out the vote election plain and simple and their design and machine put Romney’s outfit to shame.