This is one of the most brutal ads I’ve ever seen, via Steve B. It shows Romney as a flip-flopper who cries about a tough interview. Contrast that with this grilling of Michele Bachmann by a couple of smart high-school kids at an Iowa town hall meeting. Before you laugh off the quality of a high-schooler’s question, watch the video. They’re better and more persistent than most DC reporters.
Of course, she’s talking complete nonsense, but she’s doing it without getting pissy like Mitt, and I haven’t seen anything in the media saying that she whined later about the “unfairness” of the questions. Put aside the issues for a moment and just look at the political skill involved. Michele can repeat her talking points under pressure without missing a beat. Mitt can’t even regurgitate his bullshit on Fox News without getting flustered and crying about it later like a little baby. And she’s the unelectable one?
Villago Delenda Est
Well, let’s see.
OvenMitt’s a quarter of a billionaire.
Bachmann’s a crazy Jeebofascist congresswoman from Minnesota.
Who are the vermin of the Village going to feel more comfortable with?
Yup, big Mitt Romney with the flashy smile, titanium hair and tissue-paper skin. All wrapped around a hollow, soulless, core. A perfect standard-bearer for today’s Republican Party.
I’m looking forward to the “Vote for Mitty the whiny titty-baby” bumper stickers.
comrade scott's agenda of rage
There are a fair number of reasons that Bachmann performs better:
1) She’s a naturally gifted politician. I might despise everything she stands for and see her ilk as a direct threat to democracy but she’s good at this.
2) She’s skilled because she has experience. Sure, her gerrymandered district means she her races are cakewalks but any good Congresscritter knows the importance of rubbing elbows with his or her constituents. As such, she’s had what, 6 campaign cycles to gather that experience.
Mittens has none of that. Despite the fact he’s seemingly been running for President for the last dozen years, he has no constituency, he’s only won elected office once and when he got beat to a pulp by Kennedy, it showed just how crappy a campaigner he really is.
In a lot of ways, he’s not unlike George I in terms of his lack of political gifts and experience.
of course Mitt didn’t like the interview; he was expecting the usual gentle hand-job the other Republicans get from Fox News. Instead, Bret Baier acted like a real journalist for once.
What I don’t get is why Roger Ailes wants to sandbag Mitt Romney. Sure, he’s not a reliable, hard-line conservative. What’s the alternative? Does he really think Newt can beat Obama?
They have a choice of Romney, who has a ghost of a chance of winning the general… or some batshit crazy wrong-winger who will lose in a landslide because 2012 will not be a replay of 2010.
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
Maybe this just points out that there is a limit to whom the Republicans will accept as a candidate. Other than that, Bachmann has that whole “she’s a woman” thing going against her: She became an unelectable not-Mitt when a male came along.
I still would like someone from her district to give me one coherent reason why anyone would vote for her.
@comrade scott’s agenda of rage:
3) Even though most of what she advocates is crazy, she actually believes in it. Mitt doesn’t actually believe in anything except “Mitt Romney should be President.”
I don’t view this as good news. Because if world events break just the wrong way–and they sure could–the Mittster may be the only thing standing between you and President Newt.
Think about that as you stare at the ceiling in the middle of the night.
@Butch: Spite, nihilism, a morbid sense of humor…
She’s pretty cute. Just sayin’.
About high-schoolers being better at asking questions, and pressing for answers, than the professional journalists, maybe that’s not so surprising. Remember that 10-year-old boy who interviewed Joe Biden during the 2008 campaign? The questions he asked Biden about the vice-president’s role were more pertinent than what you’d hear from many adult political journalists. And to Biden’s credit, he answered the questions just as seriously.
Until we get the money out of politics, I’m afraid the crap will continue to float to the top. One criteria we should insist upon is; if someone WANTS the job, they should be disqualified.
I know this is about Mitt. I digress because he’s a symptom; a nearly irrelevant
sidebar to the Big Picture.
I like that the student keeps pressing Bachmann, and frankly, that Bachmann keeps engaging her (easier when some in the crowd are clapping in approval), but I wish the student had pointed out, especially when Bachmann went to the “law of the land” bit, that same-sex marriage is legal in Iowa, and then asked her why, if it’s okay in some states, why the federal government shouldn’t recognize it in all states.
Good on the student, though, for pressing her, because it’s not easy in the best situation to take on someone more powerful, and she did.
Romney has a Romney-shaped blind spot in his memory.
I wonder if Obama will have to buy these ads from the Huntsman campaign or if he can just use them once Huntsman drops out.
They are brutal (this one and the weather vane ad); hard to believe one Mormon is doing this to another.
I wish she had. She could have gotten Michele on a huge digression on activist judges and such that would make great campaign fodder for an opposition movement. If she were a contendah at this point anyway.
This ad is absolutely brutal.
Obama should hire Huntsman’s ad makers.
Benen raises an interesting point. Why is it that virtually none of the Clown Brigade have gone after Mitt? Are they convinced that he’s going to win and don’t want to piss him off or something? You’d think the airwaves would be full of “Mitt Romney: flip-flopping chameleon who is no true conservative” ads, and ditto with the debates, but there’s been very little of that.
The prophet Nostradumbass
@dmsilev: Perhaps they’re thinking of the VP spot?
Culture of Truth
Have you seen his shoulders?
@dmsilev: I’d guess it’s the remnant of Reagan’s Eleventh Commandment. It’s interesting, in fact, that Huntsman is going after Romney so directly– almost as if it matters to him that people might think that Romney is a typical Mormon.
Culture of Truth
Possible answer: they don’t need to beat Romney, they just need to be the conservative alternative to Romney. And to be that they need to go after each other.
Villago Delenda Est
Not to mention shoulders you can land a 737 on.
On edit: I see I owe CoT a refreshing fizzy beverage!
@Amir Khalid: Anyone with decent political instincts (like Bachmann or Biden) can handle a kid without condescending or getting flustered. Michele condescends at the end of that video, but in the middle, she just answers the question.
And, yeah, as you guys are saying, one of the kids should have pointed out that it was the law of the land in Iowa, and in New York the legislature had passed it (no activist judges there). If the kid were really good, they would have pointed out that Bachmann must be endorsing gay marriage in New York, then, because she’s all for local rule for other examples (like school prayer).
Culture of Truth
In support of my thesis, Hunstman and Romney are going after the same voters. And there can be only ONE!!
@Butch: Because she is not a liberal who wants to raise my taxes and force everyone to have gay abortions.
Really that simple, they are not FOR her, they are against a strawman. Well, except for the hardcore Religious Right who are for her.
Michele protects them from super-sizing spirit crushing femmes.
Culture of Truth
Yes, Bachmann is unelectable and Romney is not.
I was informed before he entered that Perry was a masterful retail politician. I imagine it must be so, because that guy who lives in the subway is a better debater.
The Ancient Randonneur
This Ron Paul ad eviscerating Gingrich ain’t bad either. Newtmentum. It’s what’s for dinner!
Romney has no game. The guy has essentially been running for the presidency for years, yet he still hasn’t figured out how to respond to basic questions about his repeated flip-flops.
Every attack he offers against his opponents has a boomerang effect where it reminds voters of his own shortcomings.
I was wondering the same thing about Ailes dumping on Mitt when I saw this. Maybe Ailes is taking a chance that there will be a financial meltdown in Europe leading to a larger world recession and a chance to put a real conservative in the White House in 2012.
Or maybe Ailes doesn’t think Romney is as good of a general election candidate as polls show. I am not sure polls are accurately measuring evangelical angst for the Mormon Romney.
I also wonder at the motive Huntsman’s virulence which surprises and delights me. Huntsman is all in for New Hampshire I guess and taking Mitt down is his only chance there.
Fox might be doing the republicans a favor. Obama can smile and stick in a shiv pretty well and perhaps Romney isn’t the general election candidate that can really stand up to an aggressive presidential campaign.
Romney grew up in a wealthy family, always lived the good life. He was a god damned venture capitalist, loaning money to people and businesses who didn’t dare question him or his decisions because he was the lender of last resort in most, if not all cases. I seriously doubt that he has ever truly been questioned or pressed on anything his entire life.
Romney grew up in a wealthy family, always lived the good life. He was a god damned venture capitalist, loaning money to people and businesses who didn’t dare question him or his decisions because he was the lender of last resort in most, if not all cases. I seriously doubt he has ever truly been questioned or pressed on anything his entire life.
When I saw both Kevin Drum and Josh Marshall take the position in the last week or so that Romney is both a better candidate and a better potential President than Newt, something became clear to me.
While the country at large looks at Mitt and sees a painfully phony automaton, our political elites look at Mitt and see “one of us”. Do you ever notice how, despite Mitt spending the last 5 years kissing conservative ass and embracing one cockamamie right wing meme after another, liberal commentators don’t really make many policy-based attacks on Romney? I think the establishment believes that deep down, Mitt is a moderate, reasonable technocrat and nothing he says or does will dissuade them from that.
That’s why I much prefer Newt as the GOP nominee. Not because he’ll be easier to beat. I think Newt will be at least as tough an opponent as Romney. I want Newt because no one will be able to bullshit themselves about what Newt represents and what direction he’ll lead the country. That’s the kind of clarity we need and have been lacking for 30 years. It’s time for Beltway society to stop thinking that what Republicans have been saying for 30 years is just crap they spout to get elected.
how about “whiny Mass titty-baby”?
sorry about the double posting…duh
I can’t watch that crazy ditz for more than 30 seconds at a time. If she were to become president, I’ll have to have myself frozen for 4 years.
Most politicians would jump at the chance to appear on the Sunday morning news shows. But Mitt avoids those shows as much as Sarah Palin. There are reasons why he hasn’t appeared on one of these shows since March 2010.
Contrast that with Newt, who in 2009 had the most appearances on Meet the Press than any other guest.
What’s Sullivan’s take on Mitt’s IQ?
You might be onto something there…
pseudonymous in nc
He’s the kind of guy who fires half the workforce for “efficiencies”, takes ten times their collective salaries as profit, again without being questioned.
It’s been mentioned before that Huntsman’s family and Romney’s represent different sides of a Mormon schism, going back to when Mittens’ great-grandaddy fucked off to Mexico in the late 1800s on account of the whole polygamy being made illegal thing in the US. Romney’s father was born in Mexico, and he has family there still.
Is Huntsman in the race just to shiv Mittens?
Enhanced Voting Techniques
You obviously aren’t paying attention here; Mittens doesn’t want the job of President of the United States, it’s likely he hates the whole idea of him being president. But what Mittens wants is to be called “President of the United States” and get airports named after him and stuff like that.
If you wanted to make up a scenario to fit Ailes’ ambush of Mitt in a way that makes sense to us (an iffy thing, as what makes sense to us doesn’t always make sense to the far right), you might guess that Ailes did what he did (through Brett B) not to destroy him, but to show him what things will be like going down the road if Mitt doesn’t behave in a manner acceptable to Ailes.
In other words, he wasn’t striking to kill. He was getting Mitt’s mind right.
As Josh Marshall says, the part that seems like piling on is the way Fox went on to reveal the off camera whining after the interview was over.
Mitt’s going to be running behind the sofa next time someone/anyone is heard to be rolling up a newspaper.
Maybe Ailes is getting Mitt under discipline and control prior to siding with him against unelectable Newt.
The Village is gonna have a tough time camouflaging Newt.
This can be approximated by moving to Canada. Just sayin’.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
Y’all are pipe-dreaming a Newt candidacy. He, Cain and Palin are just free-marketers angling for free advertising their books.
“Mitten’s The One!”
I think Perry did try to go after Romney. It didn’t end well for him.
Cain didn’t try because Cain knew as well as we did that he didn’t have a prayer. He wasn’t trying to kneecap the eventual nominee. He just wanted to raise his visibility.
The bit I can’t fill in is if Mittens isn’t the Republican establishment’s best/only election hope (however dim) then who conceivably is? Once Perry imploded they no longer had Plan B. What could they possibly gain by keeping Mittens from the nomination?
That suit would take one big bolt of camo cloth. Maybe they can use one of those nets they throw over parked tanks?
And I am unconvinced that the Republican Guard even want to inherit/deal with this economy. Mitt will be a generally inoffensive sacrificial lamb. Dems will do the heavy work of getting us back on track, including raising taxes. Republicans heavies can step up in 2016 with clean hands.
Newt, well, he’s anything but inoffensive. He reminds too many folks of the Republican id.
@patrick II: who is good for business? Obama as president no doubt. with the filibuster in the Senate, there is little danger that Obama can dramatically “harm” the 1%. So for Ailes, keep the Dark Lord in office.
@Benjamin Franklin: Recent polling of primary voters claim that principles trump electability. 70+
What’s Newt gonna do, recuse himself if he wins in NH and Iowa and SC?
@trollhattan: Maybe they’re still harboring hope that Jeb! will jump into the race. Or will be nominated at a divided convention. Or Richard Nixon’s head in a jar will join with a robot body to sweep the robot vote.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
While that wasn’t my point, you also forget Newt clearly saw himself as Primminster after the 1994 elections (that whole famous hissy fit of the Newton because he had to sit in the back of Air Force 1). Just because Newt grifts doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to be president.
Villago Delenda Est
“Who’s kicking who around now?”
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
I just think we will have Romney vs Obama. The rest are just window dressing to make him look good, by comparison.
Yes. Mittens is a Ken doll president, and that is all you need in a referendum. Every other candidate but Huntsman and “good” Newt is unacceptable to the village.
OMG, the most irritating thing in the Bachmann video isn’t Bachmann at all. It’s the GD staffer clapping over everything the students say to respond to Bachmann. It’s got to be a staffer, because who else would be so on point about clapping?
I still have a hard time seeing Perry as any more humiliatingly inept and uninformed than Dubya Bush. But Perry just can’t right the ship. I feel like if I were a conservative Republican I’d be trying desperately to revive the Perry candidacy in order to run a classic Republican “Hey, y’all, let’s have us a whole mess of fun” campaign.
Wingnuts who were thinking, “Yeah, you put that dirty hippie student in her place!” would be my guess. The clapping seemed very pointed.
But why settle for one Dick, when you can have two:
Uhm, Huntsman’s team produces very good commercials against Mitt but uhm, Dems don’t need to hire his team. Our guys came up with a damn good one that made the news all day and has over 230,000 views on youtube.
If Romney would stop thinking of everyone around him as his employee he’d perform better in interviews.
@boss bitch: Never hurts to have more good resources, though.
a must read on the clown car from our German cousins:
A Club of Liars, Demagogues and Ignoramuses
I am coming to hate him more than all the others. Even Newt, which I thought was impossible. I feel a strange affection for Rick Perry (probably only because he stands no chance now).
If Perry were being handled by turd blossom he would not only be righted he would be leading the pack by now. The difference between Perry and Boy Blunder is the quality of the staff that built them and ran them. One empty suit is as good as the next as long as they are not smart enough to screw it up.
Hey, where’s matoko-chan telling us about Willard being unelectable in the fascist primaries due to Mormonism and in the general because he’d need an unobtainable 2/3 of the white vote?
Republican voters didn’t like – and didn’t trust – McCain last time, either, until he became the only viable candidate (they coulda had true-conservative Huckabee any time they wanted).
My guess is very much the same thing will happen with Romney, who – despite what we here in the echo chamber can see so obviously – will not be portrayed by our media as anything but a truly plausible alternative to Obama.
And he won’t be doing any interviews in the general campaign that aren’t fully vetted by him (and his handlers) beforehand. Those (there will only be a handful) will be 100% Kabuki.
Commenting at Ballon Juice since 1937
What’s this bullshit she spews about your money being spent on bureaucrats in Washington rather than in Iowa? Those rubes aren’t aware that the tax they pay doesn’t begin to cover the cost per pupil being spent on their teet sucking little brats.
I can’t let this one go by. I was in elementary school when Jimmy Carter was president. And yet I remember that there used to be a federal cabinet department called “Health, Education and Welfare.” All Carter did was separate it into two departments, 1) Education and 2) Health and Human Services. And IIRC, Republicans supported the move. People felt at the time that education needed more attention–had to keep up with the Soviets, you know.
The unstated assumption here is that Ailes wants Obama to lose.
It could very well be a bad assumption.
@MBunge: This. I remember well how people thought W. was not actually that much different from Gore and that the circumstances of his ascendance would require him to tack to the middle.
I may be reading too much into this, but wasn’t Michele referring to Marcus when she went on her “gays can marry” riff?
It seems impossible that anyone other than Romney could be nominated, let alone Gingrich, but the Republicans are just crazy enough.
Nothing, and I mean nothing, would unite Democrats behind Obama’s reelection like Newt winning the Republican nomination.
Yep, and she actually respects these young people enough to tell them just what she thinks of them. Not much, obviously. But that is 1000 times more honesty and respect offered than they would ever get out of Mitt Romney.
Paul in KY
@TooManyJens: Plus, keep them away from the opposition.