Just how pissed should Mitt Romney be at the NY Times?

Many smart things have already been written about that weird John McCain story the New York Times posted yesterday--see Romenesko for a rundown--but the key point, to my mind, is the one raised by Sam Stein of the Huffington Post. Namely: if the Times had run this story before McCain locked up the GOP nomination, how might the race have changed?

Stein closes his piece with this quote from Ray Buchanan, a former advisor to Mitt Romney--who ran as, among other things, a squeaky-clean family man. (Buchanan was speaking to CNN.)
Oh, there's no question it would have impacted [the race[. I think John McCain would not have won this primary if there's any evidence whatsoever that surfaces that these stories are true... McCain's lawyers went into the New York Times and said do not touch this story. Do not move on this story. And there's no question this was beneficial to McCain to hold the story. No question. His nomination was very much threatened by this story if it broke too early. So what they did was hurt the Republican Party by not allowing this to be aired properly at the time they received this information.

Whether the Times hurt the GOP is debatable. Whether it hurt Romney isn't.
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