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Saturday, August 04, 2012

Mark Shields, David Brooks and Joe Scarborough - Meeting of the Minds

Governor Mitt Romney's filthy rich presidential campaign is floundering. Should Republicans really follow Romney?

Comments from politically opposite media commentators seem to be converging on this theme. More than a few are sending warning signals that Romney may not be the candidate Republicans want to carry their political party into a national election.

Although the extreme Tea-Party is in lock step, Romney alienates his broad based popular appeal by spending precious campaign time pandering to the far right conservatives. Reasonable voters aren't convinced about Romney's electability. By raising more money than any candidate in US history, Romney creates a Hoarders Syndrome image. He's looking more and more like a greedy rich man who shelters his money in off shore bank accounts while protecting the sources of his amazing wealth from public scrutiny.

Political commentator Mark Shields typically speaks from a Democratic Party point of view. He's a counterpoint to New York Times conservative columnist David Brooks, when both are commenting on the Public Broadcasting (PBS) News Hour.

Joe Scarborough is an accomplished lawyer, as well as blunt speaking talk show personality, who was a Republican Florida Congressman and is now the host of the MSNBC Morning Joe.

This is what they say:
Scarborough: Gaffes Abroad Show Romney Primarily Businessman Who Got Into Politics ‘For Whatever Reason’

Joe Scarborough: "As a politician, Mitt Romney is inept."

Mark Shields says voters may have already discounted the economy in their opinions about both candidates: "...what we're looking at is not a turnaround between now and election. And I am just wondering if maybe the electorate, voters, have already baked in these (jobs) figures. ...I mean, this is a race that is tied. We have had nothing -- (but bad news) -- (today) is the best economic news we have had in jobs since February. We have had really bad (news) ...(but) this is a (presidential) race that is rather remarkable how constant it has been, even with all that has happened."
David Brooks goes further, saying in states where the Obama campaign is focused on electoral votes the message about the economy has already filtered in:  "In the swing states, where they are seeing a lot of ads, you would have to say that in the past couple weeks, Obama is winning, that there has been an uptick in support for them. And so the ads seem to be trumping the national economic news, which is not so great. And so you have to say that these have been reasonably good weeks for Obama trying to win the Electoral College."
Of course, world events haven't played into the voter's filter, because any surprise artifact could make a dramatic difference.  For example, Romney's recent fiasco of a foreign trip certainly raised eyebrows, to say the least, among thoughtful voters, who make decisions based upon facts rather than rhetoric.  
Any dramatic event in Syria or a collapse of the European currency could certainly impact voting attitudes.
Although elections should be about issues, they're fundamentally referenda about how voters feel about the candidates.  
People justifiably like President Obama. He's a family man with an impressive academic and political resume. His leadership skills finally clicked with Americans when he brought some sense of justice to the deaths of thousands of 9-11 victims with the decision to kill Osama Bin Laden, regardless of the international consequences of overriding Pakistan's sovereignty. 
Voters are still evaluating whether or not they like Governor Romney.  His secrecy about the sources of his wealth and how much he paid or didn't in taxes, leads people to a sense of reticence about his ability to lead.  
But in the world of "what have you done for me lately?", Romney hasn't done much of anything productive.
In the world of "what have you done for me lately?", President Obama has provided positive leadership in the face of extraordinary  political opposition.
Smart, thoughtful Republicans must be cloistered inside strategic "closed doors" discussing what an embarrassment it will be for the richest political candidate in the world to loose the 2012 election.
It's time for a recall of the 2012 Republican primary results and find another candidate who isn't obsessed by money and secrecy.




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