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April 19, 2012

MBM Revives "Weird" Attack on Romney

I didn't give much credence to anecdotes from Not-Romney commentators suggesting that the Tea Partiers would sit out if Romney became the candidate (and I was right), and I don't give much credence to anecdotes from journalists that "rank-and-file Republicans" are having trouble accepting Romney.

A WaPo columnist gathered a group of Floridian Republicans and Republican-leaning independents to ask them how they feel about Romney. Their comments, claims the columnist, "illuminate the conflicting issues that many voters are sorting out as the general-election campaign begins."

You get that? The following quotation is supposed to "illuminate" the issues that voters are sorting out right now. And it is also the first thing in the article (and therefore the thing the writer believes to be most important for readers to read) that the writer cites as a "conflicting issue[] that many voters are sorting out."

The former Massachusetts governor’s personal wealth is a big barrier to them. Even these sympathetic voters can’t relate personally to the man who wants to lead their party and the country. “He’s not coming across as a regular guy,” said Bruno Kazenas, a school music teacher.

“It’s hard to be around a guy with that much money,” said Jonathan Rosa, a deputy police officer. He added that it would take a lot to get him to support Obama but that he might back a third-party candidate over Romney.

Ron Romonchuk, a retired consultant, called Romney “a 1 percenter” who has never gotten his hands dirty. He recalled former president George H.W. Bush going to a “hole in the wall” restaurant while in office. “I don’t ever see Mitt Romney doing that,” Romonchuk said.

Wait, wait, wait. There are so many things fundamentally wrong with this picture, it's hard to know where to start. But, the obvious:

It is utterly untrue that the Republican rank-and-file are having or are going to have a hard time accepting Romney's wealth. How do I know? Because there is a man in the Oval Office right now who complained about arugula. Because JFK. Actually, because of the JFKs (Kennedy and Kerry). Because the net worth of every president for at least the past two generations (and a notable founder, too) has exceeded by at least two, and often three, orders of magnitude the average net worth of a voter.

You know what Republican rank-and-file are struggling with right now? Paying for gas. Keeping their job or finding a replacement in the Obama Economy. Worrying about their retirement savings and going prematurely gray over whether their children will have the same opportunities that they did.

The Republican rank-and-file is not, I guarantee you, spending a lot of time wringing their hands over Romney's money. These folks also, I guaran-damn-tee you, are not using phrases like "he's a 1 percenter." (Even if they were, the President doesn't fall in the so-called 99 percent either; he spent the past week suggesting that the Buffett Rule---the tax for millionaires---would fall on him and that he can afford it.)

By the way, if you click to the second page of the article, you'd find that at least one of these "rank-and-file Republicans" voted for Obama in 2008. Another is supporting Obama this time around. As you would expect, though, he's not very bright. Here's his comment about Romney:

“He has a hard time being a regular guy,” he said. “He makes it very obvious by putting jeans on. He picks up phrases from the particular parts of the country he’s in. . . . He tries to fit in too hard.”

He thinks that President Momjeans "Can I Get Arugula On My Cheeseburger?" Obama is "a regular guy"? Get. The. Frak. Out. Of. Here.

Other "conflicting issues" cited in the column: where Romney would sit at a basketball game, and is he "cool or buttoned down?" Maybe it's just me, but I'm sort of getting the impression that these anecdotes from supposed "Republican rank-and-file" are just fodder for a vague and frivolous attempt to write yet another column accusing Romney of being weird. What do you think?

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posted by Gabriel Malor at 04:00 PM

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