THE DAY AFTER FLORIDA:
“Finish the sentence Soledad”, Mitt Romney admonishes CNN interviewer Soledad O’Brien after she remarked on what he had just said. Romney had rather awkwardly explained that he is focusing on the Middle Class, so he is not concerned about the very poor or even the very rich. When you analyze what all he said it probably makes some sense in that the very poor are the ones most likely to qualify for government social programs usually called the “social safety net”, and obviously the rich can take care of themselves (they know well how to make government work for them, for one thing).
But it was awkward and so unnecessary to talk like that and makes a great sound bite for the Democrats and even his Republican opponents (kind of like: “let them eat cake”), as well.
So many people are so close to falling into the category of the “very poor” or have fallen into it that there may well be an increased level of sensitivity to the plight of that class nowadays.
Romney is uncomfortable bringing himself down to the level of the everyday voter or at least people who have not managed to make a whole lot of money, but he’s trying, I guess.
Personally I am not all that comfortable with a candidate who claims that he wants to help the Middle Class almost exclusively. For one thing, who are the Middle Class? Hard to define, I would say.
Most people in power, such as perhaps your big boss at work, have this prickly persona, where just under the surface they seem ready to reprimand or lash out all the time wearing that uneasy or fake smile. Even Barack Obama is probably like that at times. I know he got into a tussle with Arizona governor Jan Brewer out on the airport tarmac.
But I think Obama is more capable of turning on the charm than the cold, calculating Romney (wished I would come up with a different phrase to describe him, but that seems to work).
As I have said before, desperation over the economy, which seems to be improving, would be the only reason I would see for the general electorate to go for Romney and as for the rest of what is left of the GOP pack, I would say: save your time and money.
Things can change quickly, though.
Romney’s remark: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/01/mitt-romney-very-poor_n_1246557.html
In the original draft of my post yesterday I erroneously referred to columnist Richard Cohen as being with the New York Times — he writes for the Washington Post.
What follows is my post and update from yesterday:
So now that Mitt Romney has won the Florida primary rather decisively and with his money, which can finance beaucoup more negative campaign ads all over the nation, and with the fact, that despite his personality faults (one being a lack of personality), he may be the only electable candidate the Republicans have, he remains the presumptive nominee.
But my question is: will Republican voters rally around him? What with the apparent splintering of the Republican ranks into various factions (as if they have become Democrats), it seems questionable that he can garner the support he needs to win in the general election.
Romney has had to pander so much to the nutty section of what we usually refer to as the right wing, that he may have alienated independent, but thinking voters.
I’m thinking things are looking up for President Barack Obama.
There are various indications that the economy is improving — albeit ever so slowly. And I even just heard a report (did not hear or see the interview myself) that Romney actually admitted as such, that is the economy is improving even under Obama’s leadership (I think in an interview with Laura Ingram). If things are looking more positive, voters are not likely to resort to a change in administration.
Also, I don’t know what it is, but Romney seems to have no soul. I made a joke talking to my brother that Obama is at least half soul brother, but seriously, Romney seems to be missing something.
Some say that Obama lacks something in that regard as well — I think he seems different since he became president. Before he was going to do this and going to do that and stand up for the Middle Class or the average American (as well as all Americans) and show Wall Street what is . But once he became president he was a little too cooperative with Wall Street and the Republicans in congress, and too much into compromise (not that compromise is always a bad thing). On the other hand, it seems to me he has given the opposition every opportunity to play ball and it has refused — I’m talking primarily economic issues.
As far as foreign policy, while I myself might do it far differently, Obama has done about the same thing any Republican would do, as far as I can see. He did not turn tail and run from the wars int he Middle East. In fact, he dispatched Osama Bin Laden, among other things.
He’s played a fairly cautious hand in the Arab Spring. He even managed to get us involved in the overthrow of Gaddafi in Libya without committing us to still another costly and futile ground war (and I thought it could not be done).
I not long ago almost thought that the presidential election 2012 was the Republicans’ to lose — now I think they may well be in danger of losing.
Watching the spectacle that is the race for the nomination for presidential candidate for the Republican Party one has to wonder: just what happened to that party?
For one thing, why is it that the slate has been for the most part a bunch of narrow-mined (if they had minds) loony tunes? Even their once moderate and presumptive candidate Mitt Romney seems at times to have been sucked into the loony bin, veering into right wing-nut territory — doing anything to get that nomination. Newt Gingrich, while not so much a loony, is somewhat unstable, to say the least, and is liable to say and do anything — not someone you would want to be president in this dangerous world.
Romney is projected to win the Florida primary today and at this time seems unstoppable, but I am not at all sure that the Republican electorate will gather around him — he’s not crazy enough.
But really, this is all a lead in to me asking you to read a piece by Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, if you have not already.
Sometimes someone just says everything and more than I could say myself. (I think he is pretty much 98 or 99 or even 100 percent spot on.)
The link to the column:
Yes, I realize it is easy to dismiss those with whom you disagree as being loony, but c‘mon, could anyone who has the ability to weigh opposing views with objectivity and make rational decisions based on that type of analysis really come to any other conclusion?