Wednesday, May 30, 2012


I'm fascinated by the way Mitt Romney has become a proud, unabashed moral relativist.

It used to be that politicians dissociated themselves from supporters or staffers who said or did unsavory things because they wanted to be seen as believers in the notion that life requires certain standards of conduct. A lot of this has always been self-serving, of course, but the point has always been to identify oneself with the notion that there really are lines of decency that shouldn't be crossed.

Mitt Romney, as Byron York reminds us, thinks the morality of one's associates is irrelevant and calling out improper conduct is nothing but theater. He's not gonna live by your bourgeois, petty moral standards, maaaan!

Team Romney: Not gonna play repudiation game

Mitt Romney's refusal to repudiate Donald Trump sends a signal, both to Democrats and the voting public: With the nation's future at stake in this November's election, Romney will not accommodate calls that he disown supporters who make ill-considered, unpopular, or sometimes outrageous statements on matters not fundamental to the campaign.

(Let's stop right there -- what if Barack Obama had declared in 2008 that he wouldn't play the "repudiation game" with regard to "outrageous statements" such as ... oh, say, years-old remarks about America made by the Reverend Jeremiah Wright? Would Romney have backed up Obama's decision? I'm guessing not.)

[One] reason Romney is wary of such concessions is that John McCain tried them, and they didn't do him any good. For example, in February 2008, a local Ohio radio host, Bill Cunningham, introduced McCain at a rally in Cincinnati. In the introduction, Cunningham referred to Obama three times by his full name, which at the time some Republicans feared would open them up to unspecified accusations of intolerance. "At one point, the media will quit taking sides in this thing," Cunningham said, "and start covering Barack Hussein Obama." McCain immediately apologized and disavowed Cunningham's remarks. Eleven months later, of course, Obama took the oath of office, beginning, "I, Barack Hussein Obama..." In retrospect, the Cunningham episode looked ridiculous.

Er, no. In retrospect, McCain looks wise. A couple of months later -- mere days before the election -- Cunningham declared that "Obama wants to gas the Jews." A couple of weeks prior to that, he said:

And around Ohio, the number [of newly registered voters] is 666,000. Six-six-six. The mark of the beast. The great majority, of course, are registered by ACORN. The mark of the beast. And who is the beast? Who gave ACORN $800,000 as part of this criminal conspiracy? Who was the lawyer for ACORN? Who conducted ACORN seminars to tell ACORN employees and others how to cheat the system? Barack Hussein Obama. I may declare him to be the beast. Six-six-six. It could be the end of all days.

Would it have helped McCain to have those clips on the news after his own failure to distance himself from Cunningham?

And why are McCain's repudiations the only ones we're talking about here? Obama repudiated Wright, and Obama won. Why is Romney so certain that repudiation equals perceived weakness? Does he really believe that?

I also wonder if Romney just has a visceral desire to out-macho his predecessor at the top of the GOP ticket the way George W. Bush wanted to out-macho his own father (and, possibly, Romney wants to out-macho his).

(X-posted at Booman Tribune.)


merlallen said...

I think Romney is just willing to kiss anyone's ass and suck up to dirtbags if it'll get him one single vote. The fool thinks he only needs 50.1% to win. And like his wife said, it's their turn

Victor said...

Lil' Lord Flauntalot will say and do, and tolerate, anything to be President.

After all, he was born for the job.

President Obama is a genuine American Horatio Alger story. A man who made himself by pulling-up his own bootstraps.
Mitt was born with a silver caviar spoon in his mouth. And never mind his wife, HE never worked a day in his worthless, wealthy, pampered life.

This nation needs to learn to never again elect the nebbish son, who's not half the man his father is/was.
I'm no great fan of "Papa Doc" Bush, but, as men, he, at least cared about the nation.
"Baby Doc" was a sociopathic, cowardly, and coddled, asswipe, who wanted to be President "'Cause he could."

As for George, it's a good thing he didn't live long enough to see his son Mitt run the last two election cycles.
He'd have slapped his face in public, and told him to go to his room.
Something he should have done more often when Mitt was a young greed-head.
George Romney stood for things. Mitt stands for nothing - except when they'll play "Hail to the Chief." He'll stand for THAT, 'cause they'll be playing HIS song.

President Mitt will make us look back fondly on the W-years.