published Friday, June 1st, 2012

GOP Nominee Mitt Romney

  • photo
    Republican presidential candidate Gov. Mitt Romney speaks in Washington.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Mitt Romney's victory in the Texas primary sews up a Republican presidential nomination that for all practical purposes already was his even a bit before the official departure from the race of key rivals Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum.

His selection as the GOP standard-bearer in the November general election came only after Republican voters gave careful consideration -- and a number of states -- to other candidates. Romney always had a campaign financing edge, however, and the fact that Santorum and Gingrich got as far as they did is remarkable considering how significant the financial disparity was between them and Romney.

Nonetheless, the former Massachusetts governor now has more than the 1,144 delegates he needs to claim the nomination, so the focus is fully on the question of how he will beat President Barack Obama in the fall.

Many observers, including this editorial page, have raised concerns that the Obama campaign will use Romney's support of an ObamaCare-style health program in Massachusetts against the GOP nominee. That tactic already is being employed, and there seems to be little reason to think it will not continue so long as Obama's advisers believe it is an effective strategy.

There is at least one defense of the Massachusetts law, however: It was not unconstitutional, as ObamaCare clearly is with its requirement that virtually all Americans buy medical insurance approved by the federal government. Look for anti-Romney campaign ads to ignore that distinction entirely and focus instead on unfortunate similarities between the Massachusetts law and ObamaCare.

Still, Romney has his strengths. He has an extensive and successful background in business, and he famously has not hesitated during his career to trim unproductive staff from the ventures in which he has been involved. That raises hopes that Romney will take a scalpel to the federal budget as well and veto the reckless spending that has helped saddle the United States with nearly $16 trillion in debt. That alone would make a Romney administration worthwhile.

And while Romney is not as dyed-in-the-wool culturally conservative as, say, Santorum, he is leagues ahead of Obama in his thinking on matters such as the sanctity of human life.

It's doubtful he will be able to match Obama's astonishing fundraising prowess as the election nears, and that is a disadvantage that cannot be overstated. But even big money has some limits. Obama and his supporters can bombard the American people with campaign ads assuring them that the economy is enjoying a bustling recovery. But if sooner or later that rosy assessment doesn't start squaring with something resembling reality, all the gushing TV spots in the world won't keep Obama in the Oval Office.

Unless, of course, Romney has a series of major stumbles. But Romney has grown peppier and more confident in his public appearances of late, and he has acquired a good deal of campaign discipline that seems unlikely to let him fall into too many political traps.

Based on his record of failure as president, Obama would seem rather beatable. And he may be. But we'll know soon enough whether Romney has the strength of message and the right ideas to persuade the voting public to send him to the White House.

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nucanuck said...

For many white Americans, Romney is not Obama and that will be reason enough to support him. Romney may well be the President that America deserves. That is not an endorsement.

Obama has failed to address our out-of-control financial sector in any meaningful way. Will Romney do better? Obama has continued an unsustainable worldwide military posture? Will Romney change that? On most issues the Romney and Obama are nearly interchangeable.

Neither can cut spending and still create jobs. Neither can walk on water.

June 1, 2012 at 1:36 a.m.
Rtazmann said...

LETS USE OUR BRAINS,,,WHO ELSE COULD IT HAVE BEEN?? ROMNEY AND HIS REPUBLICAN PARTY HAVE DONE NOTHING EXCEPT BLAMING PRESIDENT OBAMA FOR THE SITUATION WE ARE IN...THE REALITY OF THAT IS ,,,IT WAS EVERYTHING THAT WAS LEFT FROM PRESIDENT BUSH'S TIME IN OFFICE. ROMNEY WILL DO NOTHING EXCEPT HELP MAKE THE RICH RICHER,,,, I JUST WONDER WHAT THE RICH WILL DO WHEN THERE IS NO LONGER A MIDDLE CLASS TO SUPPLY THEIR NEEDS....WHAT THEN?? WE KNOW WHAT PRESIDENT OBAMA CAN DO ,,,,ROMNEY HAS BEEN NOTHING BUT FAILURE HIS WHOLE CAREER,,,SO WHICH WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE??

June 1, 2012 at 7:32 p.m.
328Kwebsite said...

Thank you for re-electing President Obama by failing all year to put forth a Republican candidate who looks like he has the brains and good judgment to lead this country.

With the parade of crackpots the Republicans have provided thus far, we may need to prepare for three consecutive Democratic presidential terms.

"Corporations are people, my friend." --Mitt Romney. Obama 2012.

June 2, 2012 at 10:34 a.m.
Rickaroo said...

We have all come to expect that politicians are going to generalize, hyperbolize, flip-flop now and then, and even outright lie, if that's what they think it takes to win. But with Romney we have the consummate liar and the most bodacious flip-flopper we have seen in probably the entire history of American politics. Not only that, he shows how out of touch he is with mainstream America practically every time he opens his mouth and inserts his silver foot. Even most Republicans know how weak his credentials are but he apparently had what it takes to come out on top in the circus of clowns and buffoons who were even more gaffe prone and inept than he is. Now Republicans have finally crowned their "anybody but Obama" candidate as king of the prom and they're stuck with trying to make his many warts look like marks of distinction.

June 2, 2012 at 10:59 a.m.
Rickaroo said...

"Romney has his strengths. He has an extensive and successful background in business, and he famously has not hesitated during his career to trim unproductive staff from the ventures in which he has been involved. That raises hopes that Romney will take a scalpel to the federal budget as well and veto the reckless spending that has helped saddle the United States with nearly $16 trillion in debt. That alone would make a Romney administration worthwhile." - editor

To anyone with an ounce of objectivity and common sense, Romney's "success" of which this editor speaks was due entirely to the profits he created for himself and his share holders, not jobs he created for the middle class. And the "unproductive staff" mentioned here were, for the most part, loyal and hard working employees. Not only did Romney NOT create jobs, he destroyed them willy nilly. Talk about taking a scalpel! If that's the kind of scalpel you think this country needs right now, well, I'll be seeing you in the soup line before long, brother.

It baffles me how anyone can think that just slashing jobs and spending is somehow going to magically create more jobs and stimulate the economy. In this era of unregulated wheeling and dealing on Wall St., what's good for the goose (Wall St.)) is no longer good for the gander (Main St.). More people out of work = even less money circulating = less demand = less incentive for employers to create jobs. And from that is supposed to flow a revitalized and robust economy? But such is the thinking of those in the bizarro world of today's tea party Republicans.

June 2, 2012 at 11:22 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Romney's "win" is based on faulty delegate count estimates. It is not over yet.

June 2, 2012 at 4:39 p.m.
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