Maine Writer

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Monday, June 18, 2012

Romney's Enormous Bus- Would a School Bus Do the Job?

Governor Romney sat stiffly in front of what seemed a split screen during Sunday's Father's Day interview with news journalist Bob Schieffer, one of the few he's given outside of conservative Fox News.

Propped in front of a farm field with cows grazing in the background, Romney looked uncomfortable. TV cameras panned his enormous campaign bus, boldly evident to his left (visual right), the size of which was about 50-plus times larger than the peaceful cows. A farm field seems outside of Romney's elite comfort zones in the board rooms of corporate America. Romney didn't promise to create farm jobs, or did he?

These contrasting visuals were optical distractions to help avoid Bob Schieffer's question about how Romney would handle President Obama's directive to prevent deportation of immigrant children. Perhaps, distraction was the intention. Although Romney wasted Schieffer's and the viewers time with his babbling responses, he was able to make a non-verbal stutter about how the President's immigration directive was a political rather than moral decision. As the enormous campaign bus occupied a larger than life space on the cow field, it brought images to mind of how Republicans would prefer to pile all illegal immigrants on buses of similar size to send them back across the US border, without regard for their personal circumstances.

Romney's enormous bus is just one in a fleet of about 3 or 4, each on baptized with a Presidential name. They're road hogs, expensive to buy and costly to drive. I've no idea what combination fuel the buses need, but it's got to leave a significant environmental footprint. These buses are enormous billboards and political ego toys.

Would it make more sense for Governor Romney to drive the back roads of America in a revamped school bus or fire truck? I'm suggesting the Obama campaign take a look at other campaign bus options and decide on something more in keeping with the economic messaging he wants to tell to America during his summer travels. The money it takes the Romney campaign to drive their enormous buses would likely support the Head Start programs many Republicans want to cut out of our Federal Budget. Public schools could teach hundreds of children with the money spent on the exaggerated exuberance of those buses.

Although Romney would like to symbolically drive his enormous bus through President Obama's administration, he's wasting an extraordinary amount of money to create this boastful imagery.

Of course, we haven't seen the size of what President Obama might travel in when he's campaigning without the support of Air Force One, but it surely can't be a bigger bus than the enormous vehicle Romney is using. I even suspect the Romney campaign purchased all the dinosaur size models available, because they have money to spare.

When Romney's expensive entourage drives into a farm field near you, please ask the candidate if a school bus would have been a better choice? Thanks!

Meanwhile, buses and immigration notwithstanding, Governor Romney has yet to articulate why he wants to be President, while his campaign is energized by ideology rather than ideas.

Romney's enormous buses are occupying space, consuming television imagery and distracting voters from understanding the candidate. I guess the campaign is getting value for their extraordinary travel expenses.


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