Mitt Romney seems to have a problem saying things that emphasize either his wealth or his disconnect with average American thinking. I don’t think the majority of his wealth gaffes (multiple Cadillacs, “I like to fire people,” 10,000 dollar bet, “I’m unemployed,” etc.) are killers in an of themselves, but they may contribute to a sense of the candidate.
Even better was, “Of course I follow football. Some of my best friends own teams.” It seems to me that the NFL is the top of the heap when it comes to owning a sports franchise. NASCAR ownership is for beginners or for people who really love cars.
This struck me as well. Take the “I like to fire people” quote. Even within the appropriate context, he’s talking about firing an insurance company if you don’t like the service. Which is cool and all, except when a normal person’s insurance company gives lousy service, they don’t call and cancel their contract. They end up bankrupt, or too sick to do their job, or both. Regular people don’t know they have a crappy insurance company until situation is a ruinous disaster. They’re not happily firing the company, they’re sitting at home in tears wondering what they’re going to do, after reading another letter denying their claim. Regular people hardly ever even pick their insurance company anyway, it’s chosen by their employer.
Who the F cares if the guy can’t operate a cash register? I don’t need the President to run a cash register, I need him to decide things like “how should health care work?” How does Romney expect to do that when he has no concept of how it works today?
I suppose he’ll just do whatever his handlers say is most likely to get him re-elected.
Do you think he’s listening to any handlers? Do you suppose there are people advising him, “Now, Governor, make sure you mention your dad closing down factories and then worrying about the political fallout later”?
Also, which position do you suppose he’s being RE-elected to?
Right- unless Romney hired Rich Uncle Pennybags and Scrooge McDuck as his campaign advisers and we missed it, he’s not saying these sorts of things because anybody is telling him to. His campaign is presumably desperate for him to stop saying things like this. He says this kind of stuff because, at least one the spur of the moment, he thinks it’s a good idea to say them. It doesn’t prove he would be a bad president, but it says that Romney has a really weird idea of how voters see him and understand what he’s saying.
A handful of times I’ve seen Romney’s personality and sense of humor described as quirky or odd. The comments and stories we’re discussing in this thread are among the few pieces of evidence we have that, no matter how whitebread his image is and how many patriotic public domain songs he slowly and painfully recites in his campaign speeches, that description is actually accurate.
Most politicians have fairly adept social skills. Nixon was a bit of an exception: shmoozing didn’t come natural to him, but was a result of hard work.
Romney I suspect is partly a numbers guy and partly a salesman who will say anything to get the deal done. If you were a Bain investor or client, I suspect you would have noticed Romney’s glad-handling, but you wouldn’t have held it against him. He also allegedly held efficient meetings. I would hope so.
We all have different skill sets. GWBush was a highly disciplined campaigner, which is what it takes to avoid gaffes. The fact that Romney sounds like a robot when he campaigns suggests that he is trying to avoid missteps, but lacks a certain social sense.
I suspect that Romney would sign anything that a Republican congress would submit to him. That means that serious deficit reduction is off the table. Other than that, I have little idea of how he would govern. Worryingly, his foreign policy experience is nonexistent and his remarks show it.
In a wet ops spy or a heart surgeon, that’s probably a good thing. In a president? I’m not so sure. It might mean that he’d be able to make the hard choices without agonizing. On the other hand it might mean he’d do serious damage with caring.
On balance I think I’d rather have a president who actually cares for other people, but I can see situations where a cold blooded SOB would be the best person for the job.
The exact quote: "“I like being able to fire people who provide services to me.” Uttered by Romney on January 9th, in New Hampshire.
The longer version of the quote: "“I like being able to fire people who provide services to me. You know, if someone doesn’t give me a good service that I need, I want to say, ‘I’m going to go get someone else to provide that service to me.’”