How Being A Romney Supporter Is Like Being A Red Sox Fan

Every time victory seems within reach, bad luck or a bungle sends the game into extra innings. The Curse of the Rombino?

Boston, MA — Early on Super Tuesday evening, when CNN officially projected that Mitt Romney would win the Massachusetts primary, the live band at the campaign's party began playing the opening chords of Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline."

"If you're from Massachusetts, you better know how this one goes!" the frontman shouted to supporters gathered in a ballroom at the Westin Copley hotel.

Sure enough, as the band launched into its rendition of the 70's ditty—a Fenway Park favorite that traditionally plays during the seventh-inning stretch—virtually every person in the room joined the singer in the chorus, waving their campaign signs along with the music.

But even as Romney fans sang about how "good times never seemed so good"—So good! So good! So good!—the reality was that they were in for yet another long, agonizing night of returns-watching, their candidate locked in a neck-and-neck battle with Rick Santorum in Ohio. And while networks did eventually call the state for Romney sometime after midnight, it was an ugly win that left lingering doubts about his electability.

For Romney's most ardent supporters, this has become a familiar, and exhausting, ritual: every time they think victory is within reach, it's snatched away by an unforced error, a suddenly surging opponent, or a lackluster primary performance. They're used to this sort of frustration in Boston, of course: It's kind of like being a Red Sox fan.

Barbara Lark, a disappointed Romney fan.

More than an hour after Romney delivered his quasi-victory speech, Barbara Lark, a retired nurse from Back Bay, sat on a couch in the lobby, watching a TV with the headline "OHIO TOO CLOSE TOO CALL" scrawled across the screen. She looked tired.

"I think he is going to be the nominee," she sighed. "I just wish they would wrap this up quickly."

Lark was a self-described Reagan Democrat until she officially registered as a Republican this year. An enthusiastic Romney fan dating back to his governorship, Lark has cheered on the frontrunner through the highs and lows of the primary, but she admits the constant yo-yo of momentum is taking a toll on her outlook.

She blames the "very conservative Tea Party" for insisting on stretching out the race, and demonstrates a Boston sports fan's knack for trash talking her rivals.

"I joined the Boston Tea Party once, but... I mean, they had classes on Communism," she said, rolling her eyes. "It was crazy."

Disappointed Red Sox fans.


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