Why is Mitt Romney Such a Phony?
Romney is a political shape shifter yet seems unable to shift himself into a candidate conservatives can support
Mitt Romney the Republican presidential hopeful who never found a position he didn’t like is the target of a new DNC ad Mitt vs. Mitt. The ad slams the former governor for his tendency to take all sides of every issue. The DNC describes Romney as the story of two men trapped in one body.
He’s pro-choice when he’s running for Governor of a blue state and he’s suddenly pro-life when he’s competing for the Republican nomination for president. He passes "Romneycare" in Massachusets and loves that President Obama is modeling his own healthcare plan after Romney’s plan and then he’s suddenly against “Obamacare” and wants to repeal it on his first day as President. Certainly, Republicans are keenly aware that their nominee must be able to attack “Obamacare” and Romney’s own history doesn’t put him in the best position to do that.
As the DNC says, the only thing the two Mitts can agree on is “[t]hat they want to be president—so [the two Mitt Romneys] will say and do whatever it takes to get elected, no matter how contradictory.” Conservative Michael Gerson has even said that Romney’s held so many positions he is incapable of flip flopping anymore.
It’s not a new theme for Romney who can’t even seem to get his first name right. At the GOP debate last week, during the introductions, “[m]oderator 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, Romney said the following: “I’m Mitt Romney, and yes, Wolf, that’s also my first name.”
And as The Washington Post's Eugene Robinson wrote, “But it’s not. Mitt is the candidate’s middle name. His first name is Willard.”
Time and again it appears that Romney is slick and malleable. Romney is a flip flopper. Romney is a phony. Romney isn’t authentic.
And so goes the narrative.
Willard Romney’s inability to stay consistently conservative is a turn off to many Republican primary voters. This is the main reason everyone else in the race is able to “surge” for a few weeks out in front of Romney only to fall back under intense media scrutiny. Romney’s poll numbers have remained consistent (the only thing consistent about Romney) but it appears that he has maxed out his support. What should alarm camp Romney is that when a surging candidate like Bachmann, Perry, Cain, or today’s favorite Newt Gingrich falls in the polls their support does not go to Romney.
According to President Obama’s advisor David Plouffe, “[Romney] has no core...You get the sense with Mitt Romney that, you know, if he thought...it was good to say the sky was green and the grass is blue to win an election, he’d say it,” and conservatives seem to agree. While Romney thinks he's simply telling conservatives what they want to hear in order to win the nomination they aren't buying it.
Romney is a political shape shifter yet seems unable to shift himself into a candidate conservatives can get behind at least not any time soon.