Massachusetts’ Democrats Propel Romney …

Lessons learned dealing with Democrats as Governor in Massachusetts politics have propelled Mitt Romney into the lead for President.

The election is still a week away, far too soon to spike the ball.  However, it is time to acknowledge that this has been a very surprising – and revealing –election, especially for Bay Staters.


President Obama has already spent more than $1 Billion dollars trying to convince the voters of primarily three things:


  1. He has done a great job as President and deserves a second term.
  2. Republicans – specifically George W. Bush - were responsible for the mess that he inherited and that America faces.
  3. Mitt Romney is little more than a corporate marauder, no better than an anti-women’s rights pretender, a retro - not forward – thinker, and a super-rich guy who pays low taxes.


It’s amazing how little you get for a billion bucks these days.  Despite all the money and the messaging, America has increasingly been tuning Obama out.  After all, no amount of money could blind We the people to what we saw during the debates.  One of the candidates stood tall and spoke intelligently.  The other candidate interrupted frequently and had no teleprompter.  One candidate’s appearance was confident and Presidential - more than was expected.  The other’s appearance seemed different from what we have seen, petulant and arrogant – less than desired.   One spoke with great love of America, and respect for the Presidency.  The other showed disdain for his opponent, and an entitlement to the Presidency.


As Lincoln said, “You can fool some of the people some of the time, and you can fool all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”  Win or lose, Obama has been exposed for what he is, which is so much less than people four years ago wanted him to be. His “brand”, so important after the last election, is shattered.  Should he win, how can he possibly lead going forward when the people now know he is too little at a time when the Country needs so much more?


The net effect is this: Romney is gaining by the day; Obama is shrinking by the hour.   Romney is talking about the big picture; Obama about Big Bird.  Romney is connecting with sincerity.  Obama is disconnecting with desperation.  Romney has a plan for all America; Obama a plan to tax the wealthy. Romney talks about leadership;  Obama about his presidency. Romney’s closing is about his optimism for America’s future; Obama’s is that Romney is only for the rich.


And, hovering above Obama’s sullied likeability is the ghost of Presidents past.  What did he know about Libya?  When did he know it?  Why is he hiding it?  Why didn’t he take action?  Perhaps he’s waiting for Donald Trump to offer him $5M more to answer these questions.


But, there is a bitter irony to Mr. Romney’s run that is grossly upsetting to Massachusetts liberals, a one-party rule bully majority that has been in political denial for more than 50 years when they began mindlessly confusing the values of Edward Kennedy from his brother John.  As a result, and even to this very day when the Boston Globe not so shockingly endorsed Elizabeth Warren, and yet another Kennedy, Massachusetts’s Democrats have been completely out-of-touch with the rest of America – at least the rest of America that lives more than 100 miles away from Cambridge.  But, it’s not just that Massachusetts’ Democrats are so different, it’s that they are so misguidedly and arrogantly hubristic about it.


In fact, Massachusetts’ reputation as a political wasteland and radical fringe outlier is perhaps the major reason for Romney’s end of campaign surge.  Consider a little recent history.  Michael Dukakis, a governor who taxed anything that moved, and regulated everything else that didn’t, was soundly trounced by George H.W. Bush in 1988.  His candidacy remains a joke to this day. His demise was repeated in 2004 by another tax and spender, his former Lt. Governor, now Senator and tax evasion advocate John Kerry.  Add in the other faces of Democratic Massachusetts like Kennedy, Barney Frank, three consecutive imprisoned Speakers et als, and you have a State that is routinely dismissed and disregarded by most of America.


Think about it.  America has rejected Massachusetts Democratic liberals Dukakis, Kerry, and even Ted Kennedy in 1980, yet is whole-heartedly embracing Republican Mitt Romney, of whom Massachusetts liberals can offer few kind words, and even less respect.  That should speak volumes about the political thinking in this State. 


That Mitt Romney was able to get elected Governor in Massachusetts, then have significant legislative and fiscal success with a legislature composed of 87% Democrats, has only added enormous stature – and credibility - to his potential to govern among Independent voters across the Country. It’s as if he has passed the political acid test of actual governing – the ability to bring reason to the certifiably unreasonable, sense to the insensible.


So, what’s the message?  We the people want practical, common sense solutions, not ideological polarity.  We want – and desperately need – government to work.  We need someone to lead, not read from a teleprompter.  Romney has the track record of being able to do exactly this in the most unreasonable of jurisdictions. 


And, we can credit Massachusetts Democrats with helping him develop those skills.


Once again I ask Unenrolled voters. “Who is the best candidate?”  For this Country? At this time?  Is it going to be more of the same from a diminishing President, or a new beginning with a bi-partisan-oriented leader?  History can be made if – at least just once in our lifetime – Massachusetts’ voters do not behave so radically different from the rest of the Country.   This is the time.

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Jim Hatherley November 11, 2012 at 02:16 PM
You know Max, these maps are always interesting and sometimes they say as much about the person who promotes than as they purport to reveal. So ... This topological map is dated 2009, essentially pre-Obama which means that it is pre-50% increase in food stamps, and increasing/expanding unemployment claims etc. But I take your point. Still, I will not bore you with the topological red/blue vote in 2012 by County/precinct across the Country. The map is minimally 80% red, but the population centers are blue. In 13 Philadelphia precincts Obama is said to have received more than 99% of the votes. The same questions can be reversed back to you in terms of interpretation etc. The point is that there is much more to this than looking at the topology. That's the equivalent of "studying" history by memorizing the dates of events. That the Country is changing, and changing rapidly seems undeniable. For better or worse? Time will tell, of course, but there is a very real difference of opinion and both sides have validity to their arguments. By the way, if the purpose of your sending the charts is to show that government dependency is a multi-ethnic issue, I certainly agree - that is what I have been saying all along. We have grown soft as a culture and need government to step back a bit.
Concerned Citizen November 11, 2012 at 02:17 PM
What isn't getting a lot of press is the huge amount of money that was spent on "data-crunchers" by the Obama campaign, aided by Hollywood celebrities, to gain the young vote, the women's vote, and the Latina vote. The Obama campaign even used Facebook on a mass scale to get out the vote. I believe this highly sophisticated "data-driven" campaign was the secret weapon that won the election for the President. The TIME magazine article appended tells how it was done. http://swampland.time.com/2012/11/07/inside-the-secret-world-of-quants-and-data-crunchers-who-helped-obama-win/2/
Christine Corkery November 11, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Paul- your response here is rude, insulting and unnecessary. While Jim seems kind enough to have allowed your commentary to persist, I feel compelled to interject. Blogs allow plenty of opportunity for you to politely disagree and engage in healthy banter and debate. Comments that are defaming and nasty in nature, however, do little for the debate and say more about you than they do about anything else. Sorry-- it had to be said.
Albert Besee November 11, 2012 at 02:25 PM
Jim: Why do I suspect that if your guy had won by just a couple million votes, you would have considered it a powerful mandate for change? The fact is that we had a president overseeing an economy with nearly 8 percent unemployment, a tempest-in-a-teapot scandal in Libya that Republicans let distract them from a very focused economic message and a lot of unkept promises from the incumbent yet "we the people"--all the people--said no thanks to the Republican's offer of social regression and economic self-destruction. A win by a single vote is a mandate, so stop poking at the margin and start explaining how you're going to do your part to work as one--which is no doubt what you'd say to Democrats if your side had won, regardless of the margin of victory.
Jim Hatherley November 11, 2012 at 02:59 PM
Albert, thanks for your comment and for raising a good point. Let's look at the situation holistically. What changed? Several seats in the Senate but a divided government still. Had there been a mandate the people would have reversed the 2010 elections and put the Democrats in sole control again. Could it be that the people like the stagnation in that "no action" is perceived as being better than too much partisan action? That's a question out there - especially since Obama's main message this time seemed to be four more years of the same. I would probably raise a different point. Do politicians erroneously connect mandates to their victories? Absolutely. Let me point out the 2008 election. America voted for hope and change, but did they really vote for transformation? I would argue, and the 2010 snap back election would seem to support, and the 2012 election suggests, that the Nation was tired of Bush and the Republicans, but they did not especially like one-party government. Bush made the same mistake after his re-election, thinking he had a mandate to partially privatize social security. When he introduced this the measure was attacked by the Democrats and flamed out quickly (though the issue is still raised today against the Republicans). Bottom line for me - interpreting mandates is very complicated.


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