A Tale of Two Romneys: Losing Changes Everything

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When you think of the widespread Republican condemnation of Mitt Romney for saying President Obama beat him only because he gave "gifts" to young people and minorities, it helps to think of the former presidential candidate as two men: a man who was a potential Republican president and a failed Republican nominee.

In September, when a secret video was released showed then potential winner saying 47 percent of Americans were voting for Obama because they received handouts, Romney was all potential and Mitt "47 Percent" Romney received a stirring defense from his fellow Republicans. Fast-forward two months and now that defeated Republican candidate Romney tells a conference call of his donors that Obama beat him with all those handouts, loser Mitt 'Gifts' Romney gets torn apart.

This is particularly true in the case of famed Real Talker Chris Christie. 

On 47 Percent Romney: During the Republican National Convention, Christie's keynote address was all about how Romney wouldn't be politically correct. He would speak "hard truths," Christie promised four times. After the 47 percent video became public, Christie said Romney "misspoke," on Face the Nation, claiming Americans would look beyond it. Even talking about the comments showed media bias, Christie said. On Fox News, Christie defended the comments, saying Romney "believes that every American has to have skin in the game, has to have a stake... He doesn't want what the president wants, which is a bigger, more bloated government that's taking more people's money and being more oppressive in people's lives." He told a Virginia crowd in late October that Obama didn't respect the importance of work ethic: "If you belong to the government you don't have to worry about that. If you belong to the government, the government will take care of every one of your needs."

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On Gifts Romney: On Morning Joe Friday, Christie rejected the very same theme. "You can't expect to be a leader of all the people and be divisive... You have to talk about themes, policies that unite people and play to their aspirations and their goals and their hopes for their family and their neighbors. And I always think this is scapegoating after elections. When you lose, you lost. Someone asked me, why did Mitt Romney lose? That's why."


This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.