Two thoughts come to mind:
1. This is the approach the Obama re-election campaign will take should Gov Romney get the Republican nomination (i.e. focusing on Romney's seeming flip-flops on certain domestic policy issues over the years); and,
2. Some supporters of Pres Obama must be worried about a "Romney for President" campaign to be running such an ad so early before the primary's have begun.
I am not endorsing either Gov Romney or President Obama. However, I expect President Obama will be re-elected because the Republican Party is not likely to nominate a viable candidate. That is, I am not confident Republican voters understand that 2012 is not 1980: there does not appear to be a Ronald Reagan among the Republican candidates, and President Obama is no President Jimmy Carter.
In this light, I think President Obama's supporters would love to see Newt Gingrich or Michele Bachmann get the nomination, or better yet, Sarah Palin.
This is why I find this NYT article intriguing. Are certain Obama supporters showing their hand too early? Do they see Mitt Romney as a viable threat?
I think a former or current Republican governor would make a better nominee for president, former Governor Palin not withstanding, than would a House member or Senator, or someone who has not previously been elected to office.
Indeed, whoever the Republican party nominates, President Obama will have the advantage because he is an intelligent, dignified man who knows how to present himself to the American people. Furthermore, he has a good grasp of the political environment and is willing to do what is necessary to get re-elected.
However, a Romney campaign could be a threat to President Obama's re-election chances should the economy continue to stagnate, especially if the unemployment rate does not fall. In such a case, the Obama campaign will need Republicans to nominate a "wingnut" to ensure victory. This may be the reason for this anti-Romney ad to appear so early: to weaken a viable candidate.