Whatever it is it sure doesn’t smell that good. Romney, after a big win in FLA, reopened the Willard gaffe machine, stating on CNN that he “wasn’t concerned about the very poor.” Romney, in trying to make the point that his campaign would be focused on middle America, clumsily stated that the “safety net” was there to assist the poor. He also indicated that he would shore up that safety net if he saw holes in it. From a political perspective Romney’s comments simply play into the perception (fact) that he is just a rich guy out of touch. But the main criticism has come not from the left, but from the right.
Over at National Review Online Jonah Golberg just put up a post called “What is Wrong with This Guy?” National Review has been largely supportive of the Romney candidacy. Here is a snippet from Golberg:
But, every time he seems to get into his groove and pull away he says things that make people think he doesn’t know how to play the game. That can be reassuring to some, who take it as proof he’s not another politician. The problem, for others at least, is that because he isn’t a natural politician he breaks the language where it needs to bend. He uses language — “I like to fire people!” “It’s nothing to get angry about” etc — that doesn’t make him seem like an unconventional politician. Rather his language makes him seem like a caricature of a conventionally stiff country club Republican.
Over at Red State Erick Erickson, who has not been supportive, derided the “candidate of National Review” in a post called “The National Review’s Candidate Won’t Stop Digging”. Erickson takes some delight in a “told you so” posting.
This morning Mitt Romney said he wasn’t concerned about the poor. The poor, after all, have food stamps and Medicaid. But don’t worry. If the safety net is broken, Patrician Mitt Romney will fix it so the poor can stay comfortably poor. After all, just look what he did in Massachusetts. The poor can now wait 44 days to get in to see a doctor. Excelsior!
After making sure we all understood the poor were for the Democrats to be worried about, Romney decided to keep digging his hole even bigger. By the end of the day, Jim DeMint had to rebuke him.
The Romney veneer of electability certainly has lost a bit of shine, especially with a group he has struggled to win over; conservatives. I still see Romney as the nominee, but will he be able to withstand the coming assault from the Democrats? The Republican fear is that he will hand the President the very weapons that will be used to defeat him. Based on some of the “Willard gaffes” they may have a valid concern.