Why people dislike Romney

27 Sep

Here’s this great husband and father, successful in business and good-looking.

The kind of man you would want as a member of your church or would trust to run your business, or maybe marry your daughter.

How come so many dislike him?

Here’s some thoughts:

His “47 percent” comment in that hidden fundraiser video hit home because it reinforced the negative about Mitt Romney as an out-of-touch member of the superrich with little feeling for policy, politics or people.

To some he comes across as an awkward mix of Barry Goldwater, Richard Nixon and Nelson Rockefeller, without any of their good qualities.

And you can argue which is worse — whether Romney essentially believes what he said at the $50,000-a-plate fundraiser, or was simply pandering to the well-heeled audience.

At least three Republican Senate nominees — Scott Brown, Linda McMahon, and Dean Heller— have distanced themselves from his comments, followed by Ohio Governor John Kasich.

Also scolding him have been a half-dozen high-profile conservative columnists.

To pile on some more – a new Pew Survey shows no other presidential candidate’s unfavorable ratings have been as high at this point in a campaign.

All of this is compounded by an open secret in Republican politics: No one who has ever run against Mitt Romney walks away liking the guy.

Consider – during and after the 2008 Republican primary, there were few warm feelings for Mitt Romney.

All the other candidates basically got along, even after the sometimes dirty competition.

There was a sense of camaraderie that came from their situation.

But the easy off-camera humor never extended to Mitt.

Instead people said there was stiff formality and a simmering resentment.

One longtime Republican operative says there was an aloofness and an elitism to him that set the tone.

There wasn’t the comradeship that you normally have with candidates — when you got to know each other in the course of the campaign and kind of like each other and respect each other, no matter how badly each beats the daylights out of the other.

Romney hammered every single candidate with negative advertising above and beyond what was needed and his attitude seemed to be “I didn’t say it.”

It was just some mysterious ad agency off somewhere.

Look at the Republican primary candidates Mitt faced off with this year.

Rick Perry still seems to be barely on speaking terms with Romney, even though he’s playing the role of good soldier.

Rick Santorum waited almost a month before mouthing his support.

Newt Gingrich’s bitterness remains, “How can somebody run a campaign this dishonest and think he’s going to have any credibility running for president?”

The only unifying factor is intense opposition to President Obama.

There’s an old saying in presidential politics when it comes to nominees: Democrats fall in love and Republicans fall in line.

Romney isn’t able to excite the voter base, with roughly half of his supporters saying they will vote against Obama rather than for him.

So why is Romney like this?

Here’s the leading opinion.

Mitt Romney’s approach to politics is too businesslike.

Most Republican politicians who came of age in the Reagan Era are “Conviction Politicians”.

They become involved in public service because a deep commitment to a set of principles and policies.

Mitt Romney doesn’t come from that camp.

He wants to improve the country but he is basically a salesman and in this world view, it doesn’t make sense not to tailor the sales pitch to the needs of a specific audience.

It’s not personal – it’s business.

This approach to politics also explains his willingness to go negative.

On the surface, the approach of burying opponents in an avalanche of negative ads seems inconsistent with a man of deep morals and religious faith.

But if you believe that politics is essentially a dirty business — a necessary evil to get ahead and eventually do good, then it’s okay.

And so going negative is simply how it’s done and honor in politics is misplaced.

All of this ends up alienating many of his fellow politicians.

Those who have run against him feel that he is quick to ramp up dishonest attacks — and it’s more infuriating because it’s filled with hypocrisy.

One has to question whether Romney has any core political beliefs.

Just looking at his record one can see him moving left to win the Massachusetts governorship; moving right to win the Republican nomination; and now to win the presidency, he wants to disappear into a cloud of generalities.

At this point he’s running an essentially policy-free campaign.

His career-long list of flip-flops, from abortion to gay rights to health-care reform to climate change to the assault weapons ban, only reinforces the point.

As a businessman, Mitt Romney has a fairly admirable record of success.

But his record in government is a different story because he treated the Massachusetts governorship as a necessary payment of dues for a presidential run.

His main achievement, health-care reform, he backs away from because it is politically inconvenient for his campaign now.

His claims of being a good manager have been undercut by his disastrously run campaign.

At the end of the day, that is not the staff’s fault – tone and direction come from the top.

In fairness, there are some who believe Mitt Romney is a good man deep down.

But his dislike of politics, his disregard of policy details, and his plain discomfort with average people ends up looking like a disdain for the democratic process, and that’s a problem if you want to be the president of all Americans.

Overriding personal ambition and not being Barack Obama isn’t enough to earn the Oval Office.

One Response to “Why people dislike Romney”

  1. Anonymous September 27, 2012 at 3:44 pm #

    Basically he’s not Presidential material

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