Sunday, August 26, 2012

An Edgy Romney?

Today's NYT has a good piece that discusses the likely new strategy for the Romney campaign to go "edgy" by playing up class and race.  Perhaps that puts his recent birther joke into context.  My first three reactions to this are:
  • Class?  Really?  Aren't the Republicans always accusing the Democrats of playing class warfare?  And don't they do this since the GOP's platform and policy recommendations always suck for the poor and increasingly hurt the middle class?  That Romney's tax plans (oh, and Ryan's) are best for the rich, and only help everyone else if the trickle down that never quite trickles down do so this time.  
  • Race? Why should Romney be different?
  • More importantly, the article seems to suggest that the Romney folks are shocked, SHOCKED, that people might be unhappy about the economy but not ditch Obama.  I can guess several reasons for this:
    1. Voters may have noticed the Republicans who repeatedly said that they would prefer for Obama to fail than for the US to succeed.
    2. These same voters might remember that the Bush Administration drove the economy into this particular ditch and might remember that the economy is actually better now than when Obama came into office, even if it has not bounced back fully.
    3. Romney has said that we shouldn't have saved the auto industry--so how can working class Americans think that Romney has their interests at heart?
    4. Romney's past--running a company that took advantage of the rules to make money for itself WITHOUT BUILDING ANYTHING--makes him look like of the folks responsible for the current mess.
    5. That Romney's finances/tax situation make him less credible as an economic leader in these hard times.
    6. Some folks may have caught the info that the private sector has actually created many new jobs (even if they are not all terrific ones), but the current unemployment picture is greatly shaped by cuts in public jobs at all levels.  And that the Republicans would cut more of these.
Simply put, why should people struggling in today's economy think that Romney and the Republicans would do stuff to make them better off, with the possible exception that they would no longer be blocking everything to screw over Obama?  How about they run on that? Give us power and we will stop holding the US economy hostage?  Oh, extortion does not sound so good.  Poor optics. Ooops! 

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