Mitt Romney tried to explain his loss Wednesday to disappointed financial backers by telling them that he would have gotten away with it without that durned 47 percent:
“The Obama campaign was following the old playbook of giving a lot of stuff to groups that they hoped they could get to vote for them and be motivated to go out to the polls, specifically the African American community, the Hispanic community and young people. In each case they were very generous in what they gave to those groups.”
“With regards to African American voters, ‘Obamacare’ was a huge plus — and was highly motivational to African American voters. You can imagine for somebody making $25—, or $30—, or $35,000 a year, being told you’re now going to get free healthcare — particularly if you don’t have it, getting free healthcare worth, what, $10,000 a family, in perpetuity, I mean this is huge. Likewise with Hispanic voters, free healthcare was a big plus….”
“With regards to Hispanic voters, the amnesty for the children of illegals — the so-called Dream Act kids — was a huge plus for that voting group. On the negative side, of course, they always characterized us as being anti-immigrant, being tough on illegal immigration, and so forth, so that was very effective with that group.”
So let me get this straight: When Romney, in the first debate, promised a tax cut to the middle class, he wasn’t promising them a gift? When he wooed his backers on Wall Street by telling them that he would repeal Dodd Frank, abolish the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau and lower corporate taxes, that wasn’t promising a gift?
When he went to Viriginia to promise to build even more nuclear-powered submarines that just happened to be built right there in Virginia, that wasn’t a gift? When he went to coal country to promise to weaken environmental regulations that protect the air we breathe, that wasn’t a gift? When he traveled to Florida to promise to replace $716 billion in Medicare funding allegedly cut by the Obama administration, that wasn’t a gift?
Or is it only a “gift” when offered to poor African Americans or Hispanic Americans?
All in all, it is quite something to see complaints about pandering from a man who wafted in the political breeze with all the gravity of a dandelion seed.
It’s true that Romney’s political career has now ended, and that his sole remaining function is to sit on the stage during the inaugural ceremonies, his presence required as official recognition of his own defeat. But the mindset that he revealed in that infamous “47 percent” tape, the mindset that he confirms in his latest remarks, continues to be a serious problem for the party he represented.
And once again, Bobby Jindal of all people gets it. Asked about Romney’s remarks in a press conference, Jindal became “visibly agitated,” Politico reports.
“No, I think that’s absolutely wrong. Two points on that: One, we have got to stop dividing the American voters. We need to go after 100 percent of the votes, not 53 percent. We need to go after every single vote.
“And, secondly, we need to continue to show how our policies help every voter out there achieve the American Dream, which is to be in the middle class, which is to be able to give their children an opportunity to be able to get a great education. … So, I absolutely reject that notion, that description. I think that’s absolutely wrong.”
He reiterated the points for emphasis.
“I don’t think that represents where we are as a party and where we’re going as a party,” he said. “That has got to be one of the most fundamental takeaways from this election: If we’re going to continue to be a competitive party and win elections on the national stage and continue to fight for our conservative principles, we need two messages to get out loudly and clearly: One, we are fighting for 100 percent of the votes, and secondly, our policies benefit every American who wants to pursue the American dream. Period. No exceptions.”
– Jay Bookman