Romney advisor says Mitt will shed his conservatism once he's the nominee

What little there is of it, I suppose. Actually, it's not exactly clear what Romney advisor Eric Fehrnstrom was saying. He might have been referring to how Republican voters view him during a general election campaign.

Even if he was, the optics of what he said are all wrong.

ABC News:

When his campaign spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom was asked this morning on CNN how the GOP frontrunner would make the pivot to the general election, Fehrnstrom compared Romney's primary campaign to an Etch A Sketch, a gaffe that spread like wildfire to Romney's rival's stump speeches.

"Well, I think you hit a reset button for the fall campaign. Everything changes. It's almost like an Etch A Sketch," Fehrnstrom told CNN's John Fugelsang. "You can kind of shake it up and restart all of over again. But I will say, if you look at the exit polling data in Illinois, you'll see that Mitt Romney is broadly acceptable to most of the factions in the party. You have to do that in order to become the nominee..."

Within hours, Romney's opponents seized on the comments, using them to reinforce the notion that the former Massachusetts governor will, as Rick Santorum said, "say anything to get elected."

"We're not looking for someone who's the Etch A Sketch candidate," Santorum said in a campaign speech just hours after Fehrnstrom's comments. "We're looking for someone who writes what they believe in stone and stands true to what they say."

Both the Santorum and Newt Gingrich campaigns made pit stops at the toy store to pick up Etch A Sketches of their own, deploying their new visual aids at speeches and rallies in Maryland and Louisiana today.

Romney has already proven himself changeable so I don't know if GOP voters haven't factored that aspect of his personae into their calculcations. I guess we'll see as the primaries roll forward. One thing is certain; as the campaign goes on, Romney continues to give Obama potent ammunition to use against him in November.