Metropolitik: Mitt Romney’s not like all the others
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Mitt Romney has trust issues. The Republican presidential candidate, accused of having worn through more flip-flops than a spring break veteran, has earned a reputation of trustworthiness approximately commensurate with that owed to an Etch-a-Sketch. Over the course of his political career, but especially during the tendentious 2012 nominating process, the infamous “Massachusetts moderate” has become known for saying whatever needs saying, whenever it needs to be said, with the express goal of serving his political ambitions.
Of course, cynical readers will note that this actually describes all politicians. But that doesn’t mean we can’t still hold Romney rhetorically accountable for his obvious dissembling. Take this past weekend for example, during which His Mittness addressed a Wisconsin crowd ahead of the state’s primary tomorrow, touting his apparent immunity to partisan hackery.
“I didn’t criticize in a public and personal way the Senate president or the speaker of the House,” Romney said, claiming that as governor he was able to stand above the typical divide between the two parties. “They would attack me because that’s what Republicans and Democrats do to each other. At one point, one of the two of them — I won’t mention which one — sent me a note. And he said, ‘I’ve noticed that you don’t respond to my attacks, I’m going to stop attacking you.’ And there began a better relationship.”
You see? Just like his porous positions on abortion rights and the individual mandate, Romney was for bipartisan harmony before he was against it. He would never attack his rivals, because that’s what those people do, and he’s not one of them. Except, naturally, when it suits him.
Like that same day, when he accused President Obama of failing America and of having radically different views from the rest of us. “Our president doesn’t have the same feelings about American exceptionalism that we do,” Romney said within hours of his high-minded refutation of ad hominem attacks. “This president has failed us. … He broke a lot of promises.”
Romney, on the other hand, is a man of his words. All of them, unfortunately.
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