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Is Mitt the Answer?


By Barbara Gordon - Posted on 20 November 2008

Lately I'm seeing several articles like this one from CNN, suggesting that Mitt is the savior of the GOP. And as I said a couple of weeks ago, he certainly does seem to be one of the biggest winners (among non-winners, as it were) coming out of this election cycle. After all, he's gone from a virtual unknown to having nationwide name recognition. He went from facing enormous stigma regarding his Mormon faith to gaining considerable acceptance among the evangelical voting bloc who, while not embracing him as one of their own, at least consider him a man of faith and a socially-conservative ally. At the same time, he was neither socially conservative enough nor religiously ostentatious enough to alienate much of the party's moderate support. And the spectacular failure of Palin's, and subsequently McCain's, candidacy, has left a great deal of nostalgia for a what-could-have-been Mitt Romney nomination or veep selection.

All this comes together to create this sense that "Mitt's the man!" for 2012. But is he really? Or is he just the man for now? When you think about it, all these factors that make Mitt seem so ideally suited to lead the party are strictly temporary. And they're temporary in the most fleeting sense.

What makes Mitt perfect? Well, he's a fiscal genius and the economy's a disaster. Well, that's true. But what's to say the economy will still be in shambles in four years? And if it is, doesn't that virtually assure the Republicans a victory, regardless of who wins?

It's true that the future of Detroit and the American automobile industry is quickly becoming one of our nation's foremost concerns. And yes, Mitt is the son of an auto baron and a Michigan native. And he had innovative proposals for how to revive Detroit. But again, one would think this situation would be resolved by 2012.

Following on the heels of the failure of the Palin-Huckabee style excessive appeal to religion, Romney's reserved faith seemed like the superior alternative. But since the end of the McCain-Palin campaign, we've seen extensive criticism of Romney's church's involvement in the Proposition 8 initiative in California. One of the arguments Romney used to quell concerns about his faith was that his church is separate from politics. His speech to that effect was the most critically acclaimed of his campaign. But after the Latter Day Saints' intensive involvement in Proposition 8, it's going to be awfully hard for Romney to make that argument next time around.

Even setting aside all the factors that are likely to change between now and the 2012 race, Romney will still face many of the same difficulties he faced this time around. He has a forced, stilted manner with people; he never seems comfortable the way a Sarah Palin or a Bill Clinton does. His expensive health care plan in Massachussets leaves him at odds with many fiscal conservatives. And he's been all over the map politically, to such an extent that he's been called the "Flip-flop King." Even if, as unlikely as it seems, the political climate remains as perfect for a Romney as it is now, these are the specters that will continue to haunt him two and four years from now.

 

Another neoCON!!  No presidency for you...NEXT!! (Soup Nazi reference for all you Seinfeld fans=)

Just a thought, guys.  Does anyone think Obama will face severe political backlash since, he'll be unable to patch this economy up as quickly as everyone would like or hopes he will, and pretty soon Obama will get the blame for the bad economy and he'll be an unpopular incumbent president, saddled with a sagging economy just as Bush was, all because of the public's unreasonable expectations and impatience, thereby leading to his defeat in 2012 and the return of politically divisive, incompetent neocons who will make the economy THEIR issue in 2010 and 2012?  

What makes him a neocon? How is he different from paleocons?

Maybe I'll start a thread about it but it seems like people use that word for anyone with whom they disagree lately.

"For those who plan with audacity and execute with vigor,
progress is the magnificent by product." 

I've noticed that, too.

Technically, neocons are the deficit-spending big war guys, right? Rove married neocons to the religious right and was able to keep the GOP in power that way. Or am I mistaken?

He is a neocon because, during the primaries, he remained a staunch supporter of our continued and indefinite presence in Iraq and if you watched the Republican primary debates, as painful as that was, it turned into a chest thumping contest on who could sound the "toughest" on Iran.  I am so SICK of all this saber rattling!!  The only Republican left who believes in diplomacy these days is Chuck Hagel and (if you count him) Ron Paul
Part of what defines a neocon, in my opinion, is someone who believes unbridled warfare with minimal, if any diplomacy, and saber rattling rhetoric should be the cornerstone of our foreign policy!!  In other words, everyone on the stage during the Republican primary debates.  

Okay, just checking. "American interventionist policy" is, IMO, the defining characteristic of the neocon. Too many people throw around the epithet like the right has thrown around the epithet of "liberal" or even "socialist".

"For those who plan with audacity and execute with vigor,
progress is the magnificent by product." 

I hate to toss out a corny analogy, but here goes. Neoconservatism is to the GOP as Gollum is to Sméagol. Neoconservatives are bullies and constantly crave conflict or enemies to destroy in order to dominate the world. Very similar to Gollum's "stinker" personality.

Hello, my name is magus_melchior, and I'm a nerd.

----

And there's no sense crying over every mistake
You just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake.

I like it!
Do you mean you like Mitt, Barbara?  May I ask why, given his staunch opposition to Obama's policies of middle class tax cuts to fuel economic growth and engaging in principled diplomacy rather than war, war, war?  
Um, I would think my use of phrases like "flip flop king" would reveal my feelings about the man. I do think he would have made a much better VP choice than Palin, and I said so at the time. My (nonObama) friends all derided me back then, and they all seem to have conveniently forgotten how passionately they claimed that Palin was going to guarantee McCain the win.
Fair enough Barbara, I forgot you had written the post I thought John had done it =)

And yes, Mitt is the son of an auto baron and a Michigan native. And he had innovative proposals for how to revive Detroit. -  Barbara

Romney may have made a mistake in writing an editorial for the New York Times. He basically says that the auto industry shouldn't be bailout. I think a lot of people may actually agree with him, but how is Romney going to win his "home state" of Michigan in the 2012 primary with statements like this.

and

Romney spent $42.3 million of his own money on his failed campaign. Great business sense?

Romney spent $42.3 million of his own money on his failed campaign. Great business sense?

Perhaps if it is an investment in the future.  Obviously people with this type of wealth to put into a Presidential campaign aren't doing it for the salary. High risk could be a high reward.  He has name recognition like never before.  He didn't have that at all prior to this election cylce.

I am lukewarm on the guy.  I don't think he has a solid plan, core guiding principles (not counting his faith), if you will - even for economic policy. I would give him the benefit of the doubt should he run again. 

 

There were some things I liked about Mitt Romney. I would never vote for him over Obama, but if the Democrats put up a real socialist like Kucinich in 2016, I could see myself voting for him. I think he has good ideas for the economy, which is what I tend to vote for. I don't agree with him on social issues, but I do think that the nature of his religion makes him more likely to separate his faith from politics.

 I don't like that he has no soul. It's not that he's a flip-flopper, he's just willing to say whatever he has to to get in office. It rubs me the wrong way, but  it's not a dealbreaker.

It was just very painful to watch him argue with McCain over who would drag the war in Iraq out the longest during the debate at the Reagan Library.  That was the point that I knew our next President would be a Democrat.

Way back, when Romney first announced, I began my research as I did for all of the candidates.  He was being touted as a financial genius, and that got my attention.  I found out that he bought failing companies, and turned them around.  The thing that disturbed me was the huge amount of job cuts that went into those turnarounds.  With middle American already struggling, that's all it took for me to say "Thanks but no thanks" to Mitt. 

Sadly enough a lot of job losses happen when failing companies are turned around.  The point is to make them leaner and more competitive b/c they had become bloated compared to competition whether in # of jobs or compensation.  Doesn't make it right or any less painful for those affected.

The flip side is that if the company was saved more jobs were spared instead of cut and would hopefully give the company a chance to grow responsibly.

It is such a shame that good ordinary Americans often take the shaft for the mismanagement due to greed, arrogance, or incompetence of others.

I thought Mitt would have served as a better V.P than Palin. He took a firm stand against the bail out and I tip my hat to him on that one. He certainly need better team leaders if he was to give it another go! some one has to amerge as a leader of this party and soon.

No!  No!  No!  NO!  Please!  NO! 

I'm so tired of self-centered, smarmy, incredibly weathly politicans. 

Yes America Can!  Yes America Did!

 

People knew Romney was the "CEO/business candidate." Bush will be our last "CEO President". Let Mitt run, he'll be the easiest to beat.
The sacrificial lamb for 2012.  It's a tough job, but somebody has to do it. ;-)
If Mitt is the answer, the question was not asked correctly.

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