Democrats spent much of last week talking about how very wrong Mitt Romney was about rescuing the American automotive industry two years ago. For whatever reason, the GOP frontrunner is making their task easier by heading to Michigan.

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney is defending himself in his native Michigan, where he was met today by a small group of protesters angry over his stance against a federal bailout of the auto industry.

Romney, whose father, George, was once Michigan governor and head of American Motors, wrote a New York Times column in 2008 entitled “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt” that advised against a government bailout.

Romney continues to argue that the Obama administration “did what I told them they had to do,” despite the fact that he condemned the Obama administration’s policy at the time. He also continues to face Michigan protestors who aren’t persuaded by his underwhelming spin.

But I think Romney’s biggest mistake here is picking at the scab in the first place. He was wrong; Obama was right. By going to Michigan now — the DNC couldn’t have scheduled the trip at a time more to its liking — Romney gives Dems a chance to keep having the discussion Dems are eager to have. Note this video the DNC unveiled early this morning:

YouTube video

Michiganders aren’t exactly happy to see Romney, either: “Rep. John Dingell (D) said yesterday that he hopes Romney ‘has answers for Michigan’s working families he abandoned two years ago’ and ‘threw them under the bus.’ Former Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm offered a pithier take in her own op-ed titled, ‘Let Mitt Romney Go Bankrupt.’ Now, even Michigan Republican Rep. Thaddeus McCotter is wiping his hands of Romney. McCotter, who “supported the government intervention for General Motors and Chrysler,” sent ‘a Michigan message to Mitt’ on his auto failure.”

Welcome home, Mitt.

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Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.