Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Back in the summer, David Brooks watched a Mitt Romney campaign appearance and said, referring to one moment in a campaign speech,

It wasn't impassioned or angry (he doesn't do anger).

A few weeks later, Brooks repeated himself, with some elaboration:

He's unable to do anger. I asked him recently who he hated, and he dodged the question.

Well, who needs anger when viciousness works just as well?

Here's an admiring observation by National Review Online's Kathryn Jean Lopez:

Mitt Romney has recently taken to referring to the idea of a Hillary Clinton presidency as electing an "intern." He recently said, to Fox News host Sean Hannity: "The government of the United States is not a place for a president to be an intern. You need to have experience actually leading and running things."

He's said it more than once, so there’s no mistaking. He did not mean to say the presidency is no slot for on-the-job training. He meant intern.

It may prove to be a smart line of attack....

That's always a winning formula for a Republican -- nastiness with a smile. Despite this utterly offensive, demeaning remark, Romney doesn't seem to have any rancor, just as Ronald Reagan seemed to be a nice guy and a happy warrior (while bashing liberals at every opportunity), and just as (for a while) George W. Bush seemed to be a cheery, backslapping, friendly guy, despite his obvious mean streak.

If Romney gets the nomination, he'll only get more vicious -- but the press will keep telling you he's a nice guy.

And that could continue well into his presidency.

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