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Why not Romney?

By Barbara Gordon - Posted on 18 May 2007

As I mentioned last week, a lot of our hate mail comes down to "How can any serious Republican support a Communist jackass like Obama?!? What's wrong with <insert Republican candidate here>, anyway??"

Last week I posted an analysis of Giuliani. This week I'm taking on Romney. Here's my analysis of Romney and his viability as a potential nominee:


The GOPs will consider going with Romney because of his:

Family / Faith-based approach: Romney is the only among the three major candidates who can claim he’s kept a marriage and a family together all these years. And unlike Giuliani’s, Romney’s family actually supports his bid for presidency. His conservative religious approach will appeal to the religious-right base that’s been pulling the party along for the last decade.

Articulate intelligence: Right now he’s the only of the three main GOPs that is handling the debates well.

Proven fiscal leadership: Romney managed to balance the budget and maintain fiscal discipline in the bluest of states. The Beacon Hill Institute gives Romney an A- on his fiscal record.

GOPs should be concerned about going with Romney because of his:

Echoes of “Compassionate Conservatives”: With McCain and Giuliani positioning themselves as moderates, Romney is left carrying the banner of the religious conservatives. That may still work with the Republicans, but I think it will alienate too many swing voters to carry the general election.

Position on the war: Romney currently insists we should stay in Iraq “so long as there is a reasonable prospect of success.” Well, how long is that? How do we know? Yesterday he commented that we should double the size of Guantanamo detainee facility, drawing criticism from Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. With Bush’s approval ratings as low as they are, I don’t think Americans want a president who will continue to take the U.S. down this embarrassing road Bush has paved.

Gaffes: Romney is a talking gaffe machine. He says bizarre things and then has to talk his way out of them.

Flip-flopping: Romney has changed his story on so many issues that he may have trouble instilling trust in voters. I think this matter has been well-summarized elsewhere, so I won't go into details. But if anyone calls me out on this, I can provide specifics.

Wealth: All the candidates are affluent or wealthy. Romney puts them all to shame, and he’s not exactly a self-made man. Romney is expected to file a net worth of 200m plus. He may find it difficult to connect with many working class Americans, who will be put off by his wealth.

The bottom line for me, personally:

Personally, I just don’t trust the guy. But aside from that, I just don’t see him winning the general election. I could see him getting the nomination perhaps. But with him carrying the banner of the neoconservative religious right, I don’t see Romney pulling the swing votes necessary to win the general election. There’s too much anger from Bush’s modern-day manifest destiny. If Romney were to win, I'd see it as a victory for the hardcore right, and a continuation of the extremist, divisive, polarized politics we've seen over the last couple of decades.


You're absolutely right Barbara. Romney says he'll double the prisoners in Guantanamo. What kind of President talks like that?

Quite frankly, I care less about any of the candidates on the Republican side and I'm totally for Obama, regardless of some of his very differring views. After all, Mary Cheney worked for and supported George Bush's re-election even when she knew he opposed gay marriage.

Obama will greatly boost America's image in the world. He's non-polarising, he relates to us a lot more and he can concentrate on things that really matter like sufferings of the underpriviledged as opposed to spending trillions of dollars on a war when in most parts of Africa, people don't even have safe drinking water.

Conservative Christians like myself can't even tell people that we supported Bush because of his christian values. We just get laughed at because they find it hard to agree that he meets a basic christian standard  'you teach more with your life than with your lips'.

I find both Romney and Obama to be promising candiates. I see both as outsiders that will bring a fresh approach to Washington. Both are very intelligent and ethical. And most importantly, both have demonstrated the ability to be productive in difficult situations thru bipartisan support.

I believe that Romeny is sincere - I have heard his responses to the accusations of "flip-flops" . The examples are not black and white - and moderates often fall in the gray area. This does not mean that he does not have principles - they just take a little more attention to understand. Take abortion for example, I am personally think that abortion is wrong, but at the same time, I respect an individual's right to make decisions. (BTW, I am also Mormon, and I don't find this inconsistent with my Church's position.)

The articles about "gaffes" seems to list a lot of trivial examples. I appreciate the fact that Mitt Romney is candidly sharing his thoughts. Odd that he is often criticized for both being too smooth and polished while also being a "gaffe machine".

As for wealth, I do consider him a self made man. His parents paid for his schooling so that he did not have to work, but he generated his wealth thru hard work and his own abilities. I see it as a sign of his competence. If I were looking for a CEO, I would have him on the top of my list - and we are fortunate to have someone willing to take the challenging job of POTUS.

And finally, I do not see him as a typical selfish politician - I see him as someone who is willing to serve his community.

Thanks for taking the time to post. I would love to see a debate between Mitt and Obama because they are by far the most talented speakers of the major contenders.

From a Republican Candidate point of view, you should read the article in the Denver Post regarding Mitt Romeny: 

SUGGESTED HEADLINE:  GOP riddle: What’s wrong with competence? By CHUCK GREEN        

   Today’s Republican party is a riddle.  Just like George W. Bush, its president whom it elected with fervor and now rarely recognizes, the party itself says one thing and does another.

    Republicans say they want a fiscally responsible president – smaller government, limited taxes – they say they want a president with vast experience, they say they want a president who has demonstrated leadership and success, they say they want a president with strong family values, they say they want a president with deep-based faith, they say they want a president who can make change, they say they want a president with strong resolve.  Yet they are making the only candidate who has all those qualities their second choice.  Mitt Romney.


Romney came in second behind Mike Huckabee in Iowa, and early Tuesday morning (as this is written just as most New Hampshire voters are putting on their coats to go vote) it appeared likely that he would come in second behind John McCain.  Huckabee lacks the business experience, fiscal-conservative, change-agent array that Romney’s resume demonstrated.  McCain lacks the business background, Reagan-like tax-cutting commitment and reform-minded resolve that Romney has displayed. If Republicans really are looking for another Ronald Reagan, which they’ll never find, they couldn’t do much better than Mitt Romney – right down to the hair.   

He can place even with Huckabee on faith, he can best McCain as an agent of change, he can best Rudy Giuliani on family values, he can bury Fred Thompson on vitality and nearly every other category, and he can stand strong on all those standards against every Democrat – measuring up even with Barack Obama on family values and vitality.


He even seems to have developed the strongest stance among all the candidates on an issue considered by most voters to be among their top three or four concerns – immigration reform.


He has been a highly successful businessman, the savior of a scandal-ridden and debt-laden Olympic Games, and a reform-minded governor.  His background is the most varied of the field, deeply steeped in private enterprise, international relations and government administration.


This Republican guided the strongly Democratic-minded state of Massachusetts from a $1.2 billion deficit to a healthy surplus, he boosted children’s math and reading scores to the highest in the nation, he provided a model for health-care reform, and avoided any hint of scandal.


What are Republicans, and voters in general, so afraid of?

There seems to be one word, beyond all others, that summarizes Romney’s qualification for president – competency.

I think there possibly are two factors that might solve the Republican riddle of why Republicans are reluctant to embrace the man who, on paper and in action, seems to represent all their best interests.  One is religious bigotry, and one is envy.

Romney is a Mormon, a much-misunderstood and often-ridiculed (out of ignorance) faith.  Romney once, when talking about family values in a GOP candidates’ forum, quipped, “I’m the only one on this stage who’s had only one wife, and I’m the Mormon!”  You’ve gotta like a guy like that.


Romney last month delivered an eloquent and historic speech on the touchy subject of separation of church and state, trying to put to rest concerns about his faith.  For anyone who was listening, and willing to carefully consider his words against American history, it was a treatise on personal faith and American governance.   But apparently most Republicans and most Americans are comfortable living with the myths of modern Mormonism and their own religious intolerance.


Republicans say they admire entrepreneurism and business experience, yet they seem resentful of Romney’s enormous business success.  While scornful of special-interest campaign finances, they criticize Romney for personally putting millions of his own fortune into his campaign, as his opponents tap into the accounts of major contributors.  Maybe many Republicans think there’s something wrong with too much success, or with having too-good a resume.


They also may have an aversion to getting behind the only candidate who may be capable of running a too-competitive race against the likely Democrat nominee, Barack Obama, or a too-overwhelming race against the other top-tier opponent, Hillary Clinton.

 What is it the GOP has against competency as the prime qualification for president?  -- Chuck Green, veteran Colorado journalist and former editor-in-chief of The Denver Post, syndicates a statewide column and is at and 303-588-4138.


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I thought Romney would make the best VP choice because of his business smarts.

I really think prejudice against his Mormon faith cost him the slot.  Many evangelicals would not vote for a Mormon.

While I personally believe that Mormonism is a false religion, I would not be voting Romney to be my pastor but to be my vice president so I would've been thrilled with him.

McCain needed something to bring excitement to his campaign and to get people to pay attention to him.  Palin has been very successful in that area. 

It remains to be seen how long Palin's excitement-factor will last. I thought Romney was a better choice. His wealth was probably more of a liability than his faith.


I can't believe somebody managed to dig up this post. It's like 18 months old. This post was actually about Romney as a presidential candidate, not as a VP contender.

Palin has become a star in our media drenched society.  She has that star quality like Obama that doesn't go away in 60 days.

Alright, I am going to need you to get out of your call, walk a straight line and say your abc's backwards. And then blow into this tube.  Hey Suzi, we got a code 745h65. I'm bringing him in, please get some clothes ready, he doesn't have any. Over and out.

LMAO Blakey!!  You have a great sense of humor!! 

"I SO voted for Barack Obama!  10/25/08"

Great job Officer TICIT!  Suspect has been sent to Gitmo.

 That would be sheriff TICIT, mam.


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