Paul Krugman is excited that the press is calling Romney out for cherry-picking data. Krugman also believes they are treating Romney with a more critical eye than they did George W. Bush.
And he’s right. But, I suspect the reason for this is a rather depressing one: Romney is less charismatic than Bush was. This, rather than any new-found commitment to truth on the part of the national press, is what has caused this. Both Romney and Bush are rich sons of politicians, but Bush could more credibly pull off the “I’m just like the average Joe” act. Whereas Romney just seems like an awkward rich guy when he tries that.
In terms of both who they are and, what is more important, what they mean to do to the country, Bush and Romney are quite similar in my eyes. The differences are superficial, but superficial differences are, as it happens, quite important in Presidential campaigns these days.