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Romney Still Waiting for GOP Love

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Posted on Nov 27, 2011
DonkeyHotey (CC-BY-SA)

By Eugene Robinson

Moderator Wolf Blitzer opened Tuesday’s Republican debate by introducing himself and adding, for some reason, “Yes, that’s my real name.” A few moments later, the party’s most plausible nominee for president said the following: “I’m Mitt Romney, and yes, Wolf, that’s also my first name.”

But it’s not. Mitt is the candidate’s middle name. His first name is Willard.

And people wonder why this guy has an authenticity problem?

The debate, held at Washington’s historic DAR Constitution Hall, was focused on foreign policy. The subject matter seemed to offer Newt Gingrich, a former speaker of the House, the opportunity to highlight his experience and perhaps begin consolidating his sudden front-runner status. But if he expected to dance rings around the others in the minefields of international politics, he was mistaken.

Gingrich made only one mistake, but potentially it was a big one: He declined to pander on immigration. Instead of parroting the draconian party line, he stated the obvious fact that we’re not going to expel millions of illegal immigrants who have been in this country for years and become pillars of their communities.

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You will recall that Rick Perry was leading in the polls when he, too, stumbled by saying reasonable things about immigration. Perry called immigration hard-liners heartless, while Gingrich encouraged the audience to be “humane.”

Romney, as usual, took the right position to appeal to Republican voters. He said Gingrich was wrong because “amnesty is a magnet” that attracts more illegal immigrants.

Ron Paul had smart and important things to say about the Patriot Act, calling the law “unpatriotic because it undermines our liberty” and arguing that “you can still provide liberty without sacrificing our Bill of Rights.” Gingrich, by contrast, argued that the Patriot Act might need to be strengthened. Asked which side of this debate she favored, Michele Bachmann said she was “with the American people.” I thought Gingrich and Paul were citizens, but never mind.

Bachmann then pulled the pin on one of the more nonsensical rhetorical grenades that she regularly lobs at President Obama: that he “has essentially handed over our interrogation of terrorists to the ACLU.”

The record shows that Obama does not coddle terrorist suspects with the niceties of liberal jurisprudence. Instead, he blows them to pieces with missiles fired by Predator drones. It’s possible to disagree on whether the administration’s program of targeted assassination is wise or effective, but no one can claim it’s soft.

Rick Santorum argued that we should be profiling Muslims for extra scrutiny at airports and sparing travelers who are deemed to present lower risk. Herman Cain said he favors a policy of “targeted identification” of potential terrorists, a concept so subtle that it defied Cain’s further attempts at explanation.

Romney got it right again, pledging “to protect the life, liberty and property of American citizens and defend them from foes domestic and foreign” without being specific about how this would be accomplished.

Perry had an interesting night. He stood by his promise not to send “one penny, period,” of U.S. aid to Pakistan until officials of that nation demonstrate “that they have America’s best interests in mind.” Bachmann called this position “highly naive,” pointing out that Pakistan is “too nuclear to fail.”

But Perry was undeterred. He went on to show a breathtaking lack of understanding of what’s happening in that part of the world, at one point saying that “we’ve got Afghanistan and India working in concert right now to leverage Pakistan.” That one sentence succinctly captures Pakistani officials’ deepest fear—being sandwiched by two enemies—and why they continue to support Taliban-affiliated militant groups that attack U.S. and Afghan forces.

Go home, Governor. Please.

Jon Huntsman had his best performance of the many debates held thus far, laying out a vision of U.S. foreign policy that was informed, nuanced and reflective of the real world rather than the make-believe world in which the campaign is taking place. Maybe he’ll be the next candidate to see a meteoric rise and fall in his poll numbers. Pretty soon, though, we’re going to run out of meteors.

Which leaves Romney still waiting for his party to show the love. He knows the issues. He says all the right things. So why do Republicans keep getting infatuated with these fire-breathing suitors who always, in the end, break the GOP’s heart?

Maybe voters just wonder about a guy who’s willing to tailor everything to please his audience. Even his name.


Eugene Robinson’s e-mail address is eugenerobinson(at)washpost.com.
   
© 2011, Washington Post Writers Group


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By TomDegan, November 30, 2011 at 6:56 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mitt has a problem - aside from the fact that he’s a phoney as they come: He and Jon Huntsman have the same problem in fact (although Huntsman has SCADS more substance than Mitt)

They both Mormons (a liability to the religious bigots and half-with who have hijacked the “party of Abraham Lincoln”.

Here’s the other problem they face: They both don’t have little birdies flying out of their ears. Let us face some harsh facts here, kiddies. Sanity and intelligence don’t play too well with the Tea party mob.

So who’s the nominee gonna be? NEWT THE HOOT??? I hope so. Can you imagine how vicious and stupid - not to mention hilarious - his campaign in the general election might be?

Oh, please, fate! Oh, please! Oh, please! Oh, please!

http://www.tomdegan.blogspot.com

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

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oddsox's avatar

By oddsox, November 29, 2011 at 9:05 am Link to this comment

@blogdog:  President Petraeus?  Really? 
Not putting you down here—stranger things have happened… on American Idol, anyway.

And with so much time before November 2012, who knows what MIGHT happen? 
I still cling to some remote possibilities myself:
http://open.salon.com/blog/oddsox/2011/10/23/hillary_in_2012_call_me_nuts_but

I gotta start keeping a list of these predictions:
—Shenonymous says Obama in a landslide.
—blogdog predicts Petraeus.

Ok, who’s next?  Anybody still thinkin’ Palin?

BTW:  Cain isn’t Abel.  We can scratch him now, too.
A shame, really.  The 9-9-9 idea, with a little tweaking, would help us.
http://open.salon.com/blog/oddsox/2011/10/22/turning_9-9-9_progressive

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blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 28, 2011 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

@Sanjay - right, it’s a circus - Paul’s ideas about the Fed would be met with the
same iron fist JFK’s were - the circus will roll till spring - then we’ll get the Deus
Ex Machina to save the wayward nation - he will descend following a committee
decision none will ever learn of - a wave of adulation will sweep the GOP and
many Dems will fall all over them selves to get some distance from Obomber -
we’ll get a savior for all seasons - the Victor of Mesopotamia - the thinking man’s
war monger - we’ll get none other than Generalissimo Petraeus, who will do
nothing so vulgar as campaign - he will answer his nation’s call to duty - save it
from the weak and feckless - handled with more complete production values than
as yet ever seen - already in the works - we’re now getting sideshow distractions
as the war on Syria is being prepared and the case on Iran being fixed - when the
nation is ready for that war - Generalissimo Petraeus will be Commander in Cheif

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oddsox's avatar

By oddsox, November 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

So Gingrich “stumbled by saying reasonable things about immigration,” did he?

Hmmm, methinks, Robinson and so many other MSM Demo-shills doth protest way-y-y-y-y too much.
Lest a “reasonable” Republican co-opt the flashpoint immigration issue and water down the politics of fear, perhaps??

As for Romney, he will always be 2nd (or lower) choice for the Tea-Party conservatives. 
They’d rather go with Newt, warts and all.

Still too early too count anyone out (except maybe Santorum), but once committed delegates start lining up, the Repub field will thin. 

Love him or not, Romney will be sticking around for quite a while yet.

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By Sanjay, November 27, 2011 at 5:44 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama = Romney = Perry = Cain = Gingrich = GOP = Democrats. Different puppets, same deceitful/ traitorous Federal Reserve/Bankster masters.

Gingrich, Perry, Romney, Cain = medical care dictatorship, $16-Trillion/bailouts, endless wars/empire, free health/education/food/house/amnesty for 3rd world invaders, racist quotas, bankster funded campaign.  Thats not all.

Gingrich = endless wives, $1.8-Million Freddie-mac bribe.

Cain = Kansas Federal Reserve thug, “Libya swirls in my head”, unauthorized finger in panties.

Romney =  abortion, gun control. 

Perry = Gardasil for little girls, “ni##erhead” on farm, “oops, whats the 3rd one?”, “Bank-of-America helping him out”.

End the wars/empire, end the federal reserve/IMF/World Bank/BIS/UN/WTO, end racist quotas, 3rd world welfare, end TSA/DHS/ADL/SPLC and other Orwellian crime syndicates.

Ron Paul will restore sound money, strong national defense, liberty, free enterprise, local government, strong traditional families, Western Civilization.

US forces gave 3-times as much $ to Paul as all other GOP candidates (prostitutes) combined.  Paul supports voluntary aid to Isreal. 

Read these 3 books to restore America now:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/145550145X
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0312579977
http://www.amazon.com/dp/9004192484

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