Thursday, May 07, 2009


Hotline on Call reports:

Former MA Gov. Mitt Romney (R) ... appears to be taking a ... step in possibly positioning for another run for the White House--making his primary residence at the family home in New Hampshire, the site of the first-in-the-nation presidential contest.

Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom said that the former governor is in the process of opening up the Lake Winnipesaukee house this month and "will be spending more time on the East Coast." Since last year's election, Romney has been busy selling houses in Utah and Belmont, MA.

... sources familiar with Romney's activities say [he] intends to make his primary residence at the family vacation home in Wolfeboro, NH....

Romney is also maintaining a new home in the San Diego area....

Hmmm ... a vacation home? A little cottage in the woods? Isn't that going to be awfully snug as a permanent residence?

Oh, not really:

...Romney's 11.74-acre estate has more than 760 feet of frontage on Lake Winnipesaukee....

Romney ... bought his place in 1997.... He bought five lots on Clark Point, for a total of nearly 11 acres, and paid less than $3 million, according to Wolfeboro town records.... Last year, Romney (technically, the property is owned by his wife, Ann) bought another adjacent parcel, for about $85,000, to give himself some extra space.

The Romney spread is the fourth most valuable private residence in town, according to the assessing records. It is anchored by a 5,400-square-foot, six-bedroom contemporary dwelling and also boasts a 2,700-square-foot boathouse and a 2,600-square-foot stable, which has been outfitted with modern guest quarters. With ample frontage and a western view onto the lake, the property is worth more than $10 million today, said Hughes, president of Prudential Spencer-Hughes Real Estate....

(That's from a 2005 article. To give Romney his due, the property is probably now worth closer to the measly $3 mil it cost a decade ago.)

This used to be one of his spare houses. And it's still only one of his houses. Yup, the GOP is really rebranding itself from the days of Bush and McCain, isn't it?

So let's see: Romney is from Massachusetts. And New Hampshire. And Utah. And California. And he's a son of Michigan.

Hmmm -- I can't help recalling a column David Brooks wrote last August:

Why isn't Barack Obama doing better? Why, after all that has happened, does he have only a slim two- or three-point lead over John McCain, according to an average of the recent polls?

... the root of it is probably this: Obama has been a sojourner.

... voters have trouble placing him in his context, understanding the roots and values in which he is ineluctably embedded.

... His childhood was a peripatetic journey through Kansas, Indonesia, Hawaii and beyond.

...His college years were spent on both coasts.

... When we're judging candidates (or friends), we don't just judge the individuals but the milieus that produced them. We judge them by the connections that exist beyond choice and the ground where they will go home to be laid to rest. Andrew Jackson was a backwoodsman. John Kennedy had his clan. Ronald Reagan was forever associated with the small-town virtues of Dixon and Jimmy Carter with Plains....

What "milieu" is Mitt Romney "forever associated" with? And why, if he's the next GOP nominee, do I suspect David Brooks won't ask?

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