Romney's Aborted Announcement Speech

Romney Announce.jpg

Mitt Romney isn't having an easy go of it the second time around. First, Sarah Palin is headed to New Hampshire, stealing some of the spotlight from his big announcement just now. And then the cable networks carrying it live dropped him one by one, first MSNBC and Fox, and finally CNN, too. (Bet if he'd made a Weinergate reference they'd have stuck with him longer.)

Romney isn't a passion-and-charisma candidate, so his best bet is to focus on the economy. For the most part, he did this--and quite successfully, I thought. After his standard throat-clearing about America veering toward socialism, and the over-wrought comparisons with Europe, which always fall flat for me, Romney drew a fairly devastating portrait of the country's economic condition. He's trying to get the term "President Obama's misery index" to catch on, obviously intending to evoke Jimmy Carter (although he fell flat the last time he tried this in New Hampshire.) At the end of his riff, he declared, "Barack Obama has failed America." Then he segued into a discussion of his business career, and how he had approached difficult problems: "Ask tough questions, take on the toughest problems first." he said. I always find Romney most convincing when talking about his business experience. He certainly was here; he seemed comfortable, confident, and didn't trip the way he often does over his scripted lines. Of the various political personas he has inhabited over the years--from liberal Massachusetts governor to social-conservative firebrand the last time he ran for president--the current one is truest to his actual background. You can see glimpses of a plausible Republican frontrunner.

But I didn't see many of them, not through any failing of Romney's but because I'm in Washington watching--or trying to watch--on cable. And they've all cut away. Oh, well. Back to Weinergate, I guess.


Presented by

Joshua Green is a former senior editor at The Atlantic.

A New York City Minute, Frozen in Time

This wildly inventive short film takes you on a whirling, spinning tour of the Big Apple

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A New York City Minute, Frozen in Time

This short film takes you on a whirling tour of the Big Apple

Video

What Happened to the Milky Way?

Light pollution has taken away our ability to see the stars. Can we save the night sky?

Video

The Faces of #BlackLivesMatter

Scenes from a recent protest in New York City

Video

Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Life

The Supreme Court justice talks gender equality and marriage.

Video

The Pentagon's $1.5 Trillion Mistake

The F-35 fighter jet was supposed to do everything. Instead, it can barely do anything.

More in Politics

Just In