Mitt Romney Enters the 2012 Race For President – What it Means

By YeOldeScribe ~ June 4th, 2011 @ 6:10 pm

If Mitt Romney’s announcement earlier this week that he would seek the Republican nomination for the 2012 presidential race came as a surprise, we regret to inform you that not only is President Regan no longer in office, he’s also dead. To everyone else – especially readers of Political Progressives – the announcement itself might not be a shock, but if you dig a little deeper, there’s some interesting content in Romney’s speech.

You can check out the full text of the announcement here, and we recommend you take a quick peek at it – it’s not that long and really gives insight to what’s important in politics (and our society at large) right now.

The first thing that jumps out us is Romney’s bold statement that Barack Obama has failed America. That’s a pretty ballsy statement to make, especially when the current President is enjoying some of the highest poll numbers he’s seen in almost two years. In fact, Obama’s approval numbers have never dipped below 44%, according to Real Clear Politics. To put that in perspective, Congress’ approval rating hasn’t gone over 38% in the last two years, and George W. Bush’s approval rating sat just above 45% shortly before he was re-elected (not to mention the fact that it was at 22% when he left office). So to say that Obama has failed America actually puts him at odds with the majority of the public, something a presidential candidate really doesn’t want to do. We’re not math majors, but we’re pretty sure when more than half of the public disagrees with you, you won’t win many an election.

His arguments that Obama and his policies caused the economy to crash and the recession to last longer are equally as bold and equally as false – at least the way he’s arguing it. Romney has fallen for the classical logical fallacy that is correlation equals causation. Just because Obama was president when the economy tanked does not mean that he’s the one who caused it to falter. We’re pretty sure that Obama actually had nothing to do with banks convincing first-time home buyers that they could take out mortgages they really couldn’t afford. And we’re also pretty sure that Obama wasn’t the one who gave American automakers the advice in the mid-2000’s that bigger, gas guzzling cars were the way to go. Now it can be argued that Obama’s bailout of the banks and automakers has extended the duration of the recession, but that’d be wrong too. Obama had two choices: do nothing and watch banks and US automakers fold or help them get back on their feet one time. So how can you argue that Obama extended the recession? Compared to what? Does anyone really think that letting banks and the auto industry collapse would have led to a swift economic recovery? If you do, re-read the first sentence of the blog post. We also regret to inform you that the trickle-down theory died with Reagan.

Finally, we’d like to admonish Romney for joining on with his Republican allies in calling Health Care Reform ‘Obamacare’. Just because you keep saying it over and over again doesn’t make it true. Let’s stop giving pet nicknames to projects you don’t agree with. We’d also like to admonish him for calling for the immediate repeal of Health Care Reform. Really, Mitt? One of the crown jewels of your tenure in Massachusetts was passing a universal health care bill for your entire state that was eerily similar to the President’s proposal. So, Mitt, what’s the big difference between ‘Romneycare’ and the president’s Health Care Reform bill? The difference is only in who sponsored it. Romney is simply pandering to his base here, which opposes any Health Care Reform. He’s trying to cover up the fact that he passed the same legislation in his state when he was Governor that Obama and the Democrats passed. Why can’t people just admit that occasionally, the other side has a good idea?

And pardon us for not believing you, Mitt, when you say that you’ll really, really balance the budget if you’re elected. If you do become the 45th President of the United States, you’ll become the 45th president to have claimed to be able to balance the budget. We actually agree with you that you did a great job in Massachusetts handing the budget there. But wrestling with a state’s budget is like wrestling a bear cub: not desirable, but doable. Tackling the Federal Government’s budget? It’s like doing battle with a full-grown grizzly who hasn’t eaten in a while: when you’re talking about it in front of your boys, it might seem like a good idea, but few actually attempt it. Again, we really hope that Romney’s promise isn’t just campaign rhetoric and he really does balance the budget if he’s elected. We’ve just heard that song and dance too many times to actually believe someone will attempt it. But if anyone can do it, Romney probably can.

Again, we’re actually pretty big fans of Mitt Romney – at least we were. But we’re thinking this is the 2008 Presidential Election all over again: The Republicans will pull a moderate who previously ran for president and failed to combat Obama. The moderate will become less moderate as the election draws near to pander to his base, but in doing so, he’ll alienate any moderates and liberals who supported him, and Obama will win an election that’s not even really close.

We’ve seen that song and dance before too, and the first acts are already carbon copies of each other.

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