The Bain of the Romney campaign*

The effort to restrain Romney could easily backfire. According to this article by Politico writer Reid Epstein several of the Republican candidates will be hitting Mitt Romney’s association with Bain Capital hard as the contenders approach South Carolina.

This is the kind of stuff I roll around in my head all day long. Lots of people are paid to provide expert opinions on the subject, but really, it’s very difficult to predict the electorate’s response to an advertising campaign. It’s even more difficult to anticipate what the response will be to a more coordinated effort by members of the same party.

I think it could give Romney the final push he needs approaching primary season.

Hear me out. What are these other candidates doing but sounding like Democrats? Oooh. Romney practiced capitalism. Oooh. Romney saw winners and losers. Oooh. Capitalism is bad. Oooh. Romney is the 1%.

It’s where this one is heading. Such behavior will only serve to finally coalesce the more stubborn conservatives who frankly can’t find a candidate on that stage and make them eager to support a true capitalist they can run against Obama.

The only item that stands in Romney’s way is religion. It’s hard for Christian fundamentalists to vote for a Mormon. You will do well to notice that Mitt Romney, by his and his family’s account, simply isn’t that Mormon. Romney’s $10,000 bet wasn’t about Perry. He could have used the line on any candidate. His proclamation was “Mormons don’t gamble, but I’m not a real Mormon, so I’ll bet you.” Epstein caught Romney’s son proclaiming:

Unlike my father, I’ve never had a sip of alcohol. Uhh, I probably shouldn’t have said that

That wasn’t awkward. That was “shucks, Dad isn’t a real Mormon so you can vote for him.” While there are all kinds of misunderstandings about the religion, it is well known that practicing Mormons abstain from drinking alcohol.

So that’s my prediction past New Hampshire tomorrow. You’ll hear half the Republican candidates sound like Democrats and you’ll stumble upon the news that Romney just isn’t that Mormon. January 22 will find Romney as the decided candidate finally past his range-bound polling numbers.

*Poetic license. Give a housewife a break, okay?


  1. Attacking Bain capital for laying off people is like accusing a good ICU doc of killing patients because there were some that died under his watch.

    Yes, some patients died, but many more, including some in seemingly hopeless cases were able to be saved.

    And yes, Bain laid people off… usually people at floundering companies that if nothing was done, would have lost their jobs anyway after their company went bankrupt.

    But remarkably, thanks to Romney and others like him at Bain, they were able to save some of those companies. On the balance, Bain created many more jobs than they ended.

    Is it sad that any jobs were taken away? Yeah, sure it is. But it was sad for the good horseshoe makers when Ford came along and created the Model T and put him out of business. But just because it was a sad thing for the horseshoe makers ought not diminish the great advances that were created because of Ford. And likewise for Romney/Bain.

    So the bottom line is that I think Cindy is right and I definitely hope she is right. I say hope because if she is wrong and the Republican electorate rejects Romney on account of his work at Bain, then I can only conclude that the Republican party is an anti-capitalistic party, little different than the Democrats, and the future prospects of our nation are completely sunk.

  2. FactOrOpinion? says:

    “On the balance, Bain created many more jobs than they ended.”

    I would like to see that claim substantiated?

    Got some #’s?

    “the future prospects of our nation are completely sunk.”

    How is this a partisan issue?

    I’m surprised nobody around here has ever discussed/considered Huntsman?

  3. I hate to break it to you, Cindy, but Mitt is very much a practicing Mormon (official name is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). Huntsman is the one who isn’t “that Mormon”. I would bet the alcohol comment refers to a time when Mitt was a teenager and going through a rebellious stage. But you do not get to the leadership positions Mitt has had in the LDS church (the nickname Mormons use) without being fully committed.

    By the way, Harry Reid and Glenn Beck are also active Mormons. And so am I.

  4. Here is an article in The Los Angeles Times a month ago titled, “Romney, an active man of faith”

    Good point about Bain Capital. Mitt should turn it around and state that they specialized in streamlining businesses and getting rid of dead wood. That is what I would love to see happen with the federal government! Too many people that need to justify their jobs by creating obstacles and beauracracy. For example, at my work a form was submitted to the Feds to be processed. It was returned because the x’s in the boxes were not perfectly lined up and centered. Unbelievable! I would love to give Mitt the chance to do with the government what he did with the Salt Lake Olympics and to businesses through Bain Capital. Unfortunately, I am afraid the Federal Government is too big, unwieldy, and political to fix.

  5. Randy in Richmond says:

    John Kennedy, in an era when people were far less tolerant than today, overcame the religion “thing” essentially with one speech addressing the issue. Romney needs to figure out a way to do the same thing. A nation that elected a President who belonged for over 20 years to Trinity United Church of Christ headed by Rev. Jeremiah Wright, of “ the chickens came home to roost” fame on 9/11, can surely elect a President that is a Morman. Goodness, the number one person in the US Senate is a Morman from where–Nevada, known for it’s flowing alcohol, loose living, and preponderance of casinos.

  6. FactorOpinion: Romney claims that if you look at jobs created net of layoffs, his work at Bain created 100,000 jobs net. I’ve seen some who argue that that figure may be overstated, but I haven’t seen anyone who has even put forward that the true net number is in fact negative.

    Lisa: I agree that Romney is a “true Mormon”.

    On a related issue, in my view, any religious person who doesn’t vote for Romney on account of his Mormonism is showing an incredible lack of self-awareness. Of course there are claims in Mormonism that seem strange to the outsider. That is true of Judaism (God parted the Red Sea so some runaway slaves could pass through?) and Christianity (God became a human, died for our sins, returned to earth, and ascended?) and basically every other religion. I happen to be a religious Protestent Christian, but I’d like to think I’m objective enough to realize that faith claims are always going to seem strange to an outsider… if that wasn’t true, they would cease to be faith claims.

    Randy: Romney already gave his “Faith in America” speech 4 years ago. Google it. It is the best speech I have ever heard on the relationship between holding American values and being a person of faith.

  7. Ryan
    I have seen Romney’s Faith speech on video and it is a fine speech. In political time 4 years was–well, a long time ago. He needs to redo or something similar but it would probably be best after he gets the nod.

    As an aside those of us that predicted Newt would implode–well, he is fulfilling our prophesy.

  8. Wait a minute. What if the real race here is between Huntsman and Santorum? Perry is out. Gingrich implodes, and those adverts are never run to coalesce South Carolina.

    It would be such a great thing to have the nomination live all the way to Wisconsin in April. (Expect I’m gone a good chunk of February and a week in March. 🙁 )

  9. Oh, wait. Except it’s only Romney and Paul in Virginia. Can a Republican candidate be nominated without Virginia delegates? Others have said no. That’s going to take some research, and it won’t be done tonight. 🙂

  10. Ok, who’s the brilliant political scientist in the room? (Oh, that is so going to get me into trouble.)

    Republicans rally around Romney after Bain hits