The Emptiest Candidate in Presidential Election History

As the end of this election approaches, it's worth taking a step back and asking this question: In the entire history of the United States of America, from George Washington's election in 1789 on down, has there been a single candidate as unmoored from ideological principle or belief as Mitt Romney? I'm not just throwing an insult here, I ask this question sincerely. Because I can't think of any. There have been middle-of-the road candidates, candidates eager to compromise, candidates who would divert attention to issues that weren't all that important, and even candidates who at some point in their careers undertook a meaningful position change or two. For instance, early in George H.W. Bush's career he was an outspoken supporter of abortion rights, just as Al Gore was anti-choice early in his; both changed their positions to align with their parties. But Romney truly does stand alone, not only for the sheer quantity of issues on which he has shifted, but for the frequency with which wholesale shifts have taken place.

And with the presidential debates complete, there is barely an issue area on which Romney hasn't undergone a change just in the last few weeks. I had thought that no matter what else Romney might change his mind on, if there's one thing he believes it's that the wealth and privilege of the wealthy and privilege must be maintained and enhanced. But he even flip-flopped on that, not only pledging not to cut taxes on the wealthy (in contrast to what he said during the primaries), but actually proposing a huge tax increase on them (though I seem to be the only one who has noticed that that's what Romney has in fact proposed). That neither his supporters nor his opponents believe that he really wants that just makes it all the more remarkable. I feel like we've gotten so used to the idea of Romney as a shape-shifter that what for a different candidate might have been greeted as a series of scandalous acts of cynicism was instead greeted with, "Yep, everybody saw that coming."

You have to give some strategic props to Romney for his latest ideological refashioning. He waited to unveil it until the first presidential debate, when Republicans were at an emotional low point imagining that the president they hate with such consuming venom might waltz to a second term. After that, the new foreign policy Romney we met in the final debate came as no surprise. He calculated correctly that with the election so close his base wouldn't care, that they'd accept anything that might improve their chances of getting rid of Barack Obama. Perhaps they're grumbling in their private conversations, but I doubt it. They know that what matters is winning. They also understand that keeping a President Romney in line will take some work, but that's an effort they're ready for. And that would have been true whether he presented himself as newly Moderate Mitt in the last few weeks of the campaign or not.

Romney also probably understood that if he waited long enough, the press wouldn't punish him much for an ideological refashioning either. At the end of a campaign, horse-race reporting and the focus on the most trivial of campaign quibbles goes from being a bias that colors coverage to swallowing the entirety of coverage. Who has time to write a story about Romney's latest ideological metamorphosis, when there were 18 new polls released today and there are diners in Ohio whose customers have not yet been interviewed to plumb their deep swing-votery wisdom?

In popular culture, politicians are usually portrayed in one of two ways. First you have the candidate whose polished smile and charm hide something sinister: he murdered his mistress, or he'll resort to the most immoral tactics (blackmail, vote-stealing) to win. The second version is the candidate who believes in nothing other that whatever will get him an extra vote or two and who doesn't care at all about issues, the man or woman for whom the only goal is power and for whom power is an end in itself. This caricature is often a way for television shows and movies to use the political world as a dramatic setting while avoiding ideology completely, and it's one that applies to no politician I've ever encountered. Some are more cynical than others, but they all have things they believe in and things they'd like to do. They all have some vision of what America would look like if they had their way.

But in Mitt Romney we may finally have found a candidate who lives up to the caricature. I think by now we can safely say that when it comes to the things government does and the issues that confront the nation as a whole, he truly believes in nothing. It's really quite remarkable that not only could he get so far, but that he has a real chance to become president of the United States.

Comments

I'm not going to challenge the author's opinion about Romney. I basically agree, though there is overstatement. He fails to take into account, however, that Obama has not taken his job seriously and is a con man. We've have 12 years of horrible presidents, so I'll roll the dice

I don't agree. Obama has been a good President. Why: No new wars and he has handled foreign policy in a competent fashion. It will take more than 4 years to restore America's standing in the world after the devastation of Bush. I would rather have the Iran situation handled by him than the wild card Romney. I think Obamacare is a great accomplishment that will benefit more Americans than any other new program in decades. I think the economy is his "do better" but the economy is clearly - but slowly - on the mend. We have 36 months of GDP growth, employment growth, solid business profits, and the Dow is over 13,000 (up more than 3000 since 2009). The deficit is a problem. I lay blame at Obama's feet here but equally at the feet of Boehner and McConnell. On balance, he has been a good President.

I don't agree. Obama has been a terrible President. He is incompetent and deceitful. He lied about Benghazi and an American Ambassador died. I can't think of a single person less qualified to handle Iran than Obama. Obamacare will destroy 800,000 jobs, drastically raise everyone's insurance premiums and lead to severe rationing of medical services, all resulting in more death of more Americans than just throwing it out. There is no economic recovery. Businesses are failing, the stock market is falling and we are headed for a double dip recession. On balance he is the worst president this country has ever seen. Enough. Time for him to go.

You are wildly misinformed about Obamacare. I assume you get your info from FOX. Obamacare will CREATE new jobs. Secondly, it will bring America's healthcare system to parity with the other countries in the G20. If you study ANY report on comparative healthcare systems ours is LAST. Obamacare is a major step in the right direction. Many Americans think we have a terrific system; we don't.

----- He lied about Benghazi and an American Ambassador died. -----

Bordering on an outright lie, aren't you? At the very least you are attempting to spread false information. You put this in a way intended to mislead people into thinking the President lied and the ambassador died as a result of that. You know that is a complete fabrication that has no basis in reality. You also know that is exactly the type of fabrication the right-wingnuts are known for.

How about stating the facts?

There was an attack on a building, not an embassy, where four Americans died. That is never good. The first thing repubs started doing is politicizing the event. Even the family members of the people that were killed told the repubs to stop using their relatives for political props.

As with all attacks the information coming out is confusing and conflicted. Nobody knew exactly what was happening for a time. Still the repubs started with their falsification of the facts immediately.

The day following the event the President held a press conference and stated the 'acts of terror' will not go unpunished.

Where I have difficulty with the wingnut version is exactly what do you claim President Obama lied about? I don't depend on the False Views propaganda network for my news. I consult credible sources. The press conference was recorded on videotape and played, sans the editing False Views performs on all video they show. Where is the lie?

According to the CBO, the Affordable Care Act will, in fact, reduce the deficit, increase the numbers of Americans that have access to health care, increase the life of Medicare another eight years so a reasonable solution can be found, reduce the out-of-pocket expenses for seniors and reduce the cost of health care overall. Again, I don't depend on right-wingnuts for information. They are not credible. What is your source?

Why is it right-wing pundits never cite their sources? Romney claimed there were six studies that proved his massive tax cuts for the rich would reduce the debt and the deficit. He would never say who they were. Turns out there were four right-wing bloggers, one right-wing think tank (that had to do some creative manipulating to romney's budget, otherwise known as falsification), and one right-winger that is on romney's staff. All right-wingers. The credibility was just seething out at the seams.

----- There is no economic recovery. Businesses are failing, the stock market is falling and we are headed for a double dip recession. -----
Exaggerating, spinning, and twisting the facts are one thing. What you claim here is far beyond any of that. What planet are you on? Where does this BS come from? I've not seen a claim further from the truth than this one is for a while. What is your source? It seems you just make things up as you go along. You hate the President for whatever irrational reasons your mind can manufacture. We all get that. Posting this kind of hogwash does not help your cause. It simply turns people away from you. Having a reasonable, debatable, credible disagreement is one thing. What you post is simply false and you know it. No debate is possible when you simply post lies based on irrational, unadulterated hatred.

I've never seen a right-winger cite or produce any evidence to back-up their claims. I have challenged many of them to do so. I expect we will not see any evidence to back-up your claims either, will we?

The comment "he lied about Benghazi and an ambassador died" are not tied together, they are separate statements about a similar event. Mr. Obama did lie about Benghazi for more than two weeks after the event took place. He continued to lay blame on an obscure youtube video when he knew full well that it was a coordinated, terrorist attack. It appears that the administration lied about requests from the ambassador for increased security prior to the attack on 9-11. Obama claimed no such requests were made, but email correspondence from the ambassador have since surfaced that show he clearly requested additional security, which was denied. As a result, our ambassador and three other brave Americans died. You can try to spin this any way you want with your twisted left-wing, nut-job, liberal logic, but those ARE the facts.

Regarding your statement that "there was an attack on a building, not an embassy" is so ridiculous it boggles the mind. Where do you think an ambassador of the U.S. Government resides and works from? An embassy. You are being intellectually dishonest by refusing to acknowledge this fact, due to your blind devotion to a ruthless, socialist, president and by listening to those left-wing nutjobs at MSNBC and other loyal democratic press sources (pretending to be unbiased news organizations when they are really lap-dogs to this administration acting as their press office spreading the liberal, left-wing, nut-job ideology).

The press conference the President gave the day after 9-11 had nothing to do with the attack on our embassy in Benghazi on 9-11-12 and you know it. The whole thing was directed towards the attack on the twin towers on 9-11-01, a sort of memorial to that original attack. Our idiotic president could barely spit out the term "terrorist attack" in regard to that event more than 10 years ago. He made no such pronouncement regarding the attack that ocurred the day before.

Your description of the supposed benefits of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) are all fabrications. You do exactly what you accuse Republicans of doing, you fail to cite any of your sources for this list of lies. What is your source for these ridiculous claims? You mention the CBO, but you don't cite the name and date of any such study. The reports that I have read from the CBO indicate that this travesty of law will actually cost upwards of a trillion dollars more (that's right I said one trillion!) than the original government estimates because the administration lied about certain requirements of the law. Obamacare steals $716 billion from the Medicare program, a far cry from saving it. This transfer of funds will likely bankrupt Medicare and force seniors into the insurance exchanges for medical insurance. I have already been informed by the human resources dept. at my employer that in the near future we will have to pay a tax penalty of 20% on our existing health insurance premiums because we have what is considered a "cadillac" plan! That is an increase to my cost of health insurance of about $1,200 per year. Not really saving me any money. My employer will also suffer a $200 or $300 per employee penalty depending on how each employee reacts to this tax. My health insurance permium is going up 10.35% next year and that is on top of a 11.56% increase last year. These are the actual facts about Obamacare, not fabrication. The next step in mind for all the left-wing nut-jobs in Washington is to transition into a single-payer system ran by the government, which would eliminate all private insurance, reduce the level of service to everyone, reduce the quality of care, and cost more and more every year eventually bankrupting the federal government. At that point, nobody will have any health insurance and healthcare will be ruined.

The only thing you are right about is the fact that I hate Obama. No kidding, why would I like anybody whose primary goal in life is to destroy our once great country and turn it into a bankrupt European-like, socialist country. Is my hatred any different than your hatred of Bush. The crap that you guys spewed during the 8-year presidency of Mr. Bush was far worse than anything being declared by us right-wingers. I expect you will never admit to that fact.

Well, Libya is a new war, albeit a small one. However, no less than Biden himself said that taking the country into combat that way without congressional approval is an impeachable offense. On the whole,I'd agree with you that foreign policy hasn't been too bad, though. At least not until Benghazigate, which is very bad. To have denied requests for extra security on 911 of all days, then spend two weeks lying about a video when they knew it wasn't responsible, is a huge mess.

The deficit is a monstrous problem. In fact, the biggest of them all. Social Security, Medicare, and the country itself are all on track to go bankrupt, and the plan Obama currently has on the table is to do nothing and let it happen. I simply can't vote for that. If I do, I'll have no right to criticize it. I agree with you about Boehner. For all their talk of getting the budget under control, they cut absolutely zero from it, only a slight reduction in the rate of increase. Unfortunately, although Boehner and McConnell represent me and cast votes that affect me, I have no right to vote against them. I do have the right to vote against Obama, though, and have done so this time. However, since Romney failed to put anything on the table to fix it, only vague promises, similar to the one Obama gave us in 2008, I was unable to vote for him, either. Result: a write-in vote. (I voted for my wife, if anyone cares.)

Zork -- You are badly misinformed, & people like you are one of the reasons why this election is even close, in spite of the fact that Romney has flipped or lied his way, on every major or non-major issue, through his campaign to being the Republican nominee plus he’s not put forward a single credible plan on the economy that ARITHMETICALLY even adds up, forget making economic sense.
Your concern for debt & deficits has, in fact, been addressed by Obama, as the new healthcare law CUTS the deficit over the first 10 years, though its real work starts after the first 10 years, when the debt becomes a real problem. All independent budget watchers have concluded that healthcare spending is the major driver of debt over the LONG TERM, & this law puts in place many mechanisms that address that. Yes, other areas such as the tax code, other entitlements, social spending and defense need to be addressed too, & Obama’s put a plan forward for that too (u can disagree with it, but cannot say he hasn’t done anything to address these issues) but one cannot say that Obama hasn’t tried to address the biggest component that would add to the LONG TERM debt of the country, which is healthcare.
Given what he was handed over from the previous admin., he’s done as well as can be hoped for, by anybody. It’s not Obama-worshipping, look at any advanced big, or modestly big sized economy, & see how they’ve performed as compared to the US, over the last 4 years.

You don't agree? Too bad, most thoughtful people aren't going to follow your lead. So stay on your knees before your messiah. The rest of the country looks like it's ready to move on.

The great thing about Romney is that, according to the words of Alexander Hamilton, "Those who stand for nothing fall for anything", Romney stands for everything, he stands for abortion, and against abortion, for raising taxes and against raising taxes, etc., and will therefore fall for nothing.

Mitt is entirely content free. What will he do if elected?? I have absolutely no idea. But I suspect that it won't be good.

Not taken his job seriously? Horrible? Have you taken even 1 minute to research what exactly Obama has accomplished in his first term? Look into you're facts before you vote, don't just fall into the trap of repeating what you hear. Its a reasonable thing to ask of you.

The President's Done a Lot! Here Are More Than 200 Obama First Term Accomplishments, With Citations!
http://pleasecutthecrap.typepad.com/main/what-has-obama-done-since-january-20-2009.html

If you still don't think he's doing his job after reading about his 1st term accomplishments, no president is going to make you happy, especially Mitt.

Romney is trying to do a "moderate Mitt" makeover. He has been on both sides of every key issue except 2: he will definitely lower taxes (and eliminate capital gains) and he will attempt to overturn Roe vs Wade. What else does Romney stand for???? I have no idea.

It seems like Republicans are using the Dems playbook for better or worse. Do and say anything to get in office. All these slams about Romney's shifting can be said just as easily about Obama. If you hear Obama say "As I've been saying for years..." and "I've made clear time and time again..." you know he's about to spout something new that he thinks the masses want to hear.

What's wrong with the political philosophy of feeling your base is locked in and trying to grab a few of the idiots...er, undecided voters out there; other than we expect more of Republican leaders?

I don't think Romney is empty. He's a pragmatic businessman who believes in solving problems. He doesn't look at the world ideologically and so is unappealing to people who do. Actually, Obama is something of an empty suit. What are his real beliefs? What is he willing to fight for? And I don't mean making speeches, I mean working hard to achieve something. I would agree with the previous commentator who said we have had twelve years of failed presidents and he's willing to roll the dice and vote for Romney. Me too.

It seems like Mitts campaign bloggers have descended on this article to try to do some damage control:

Listening to Mitt speak is like listening to nails being ran down a blackboard, not because of his voice, but because he is so full BS. He is a stereotypical greasy politician, who stands for nothing except saying whatever he thinks he needs to to win votes. Look at his flip flop videos on YouTube, Who really knows what he stands for or what he'll really do in office? -I agree completely with this article. Mitts ridiculous and has no credibility. Besides bribing wealthy voters to vote for him he has nothing to offer this country except raping it for all he can for his own benefit. Big mistake to vote for this guy.

In contrast, take 2 minutes and look at what Obama has accomplished while in office:
The President's Done a Lot! Here Are More Than 200 Obama First Term Accomplishments, With Citations!
http://pleasecutthecrap.typepad.com/main/what-has-obama-done-since-january-20-2009.html

If you still don't think he's doing his job after reading about his 1st term accomplishments, no president is going to ever make you happy.

It is actually the narcissistic One who has no true self. Abandoned by his parents, he suffered from severe separation anxiety as a young child and as a defense developed a falsely grandiose psychological shell surrounding an essentially empty core. He is desperately focused on preserving his image, because he relies upon external support for a lack of internal structures. It is very easy to imagine him allowing people to die in Libya rather than admit that his support of the Arab spring may have facilitated the growth of Islamic terrorism.

Jane: It sounds like you took Psychology 100, learned the jargon and then flunked the course. Obama has handled foreign policy very skillfully and the results are getting better. Comment on events; don't spout off with pseudo-analysis clap trap that you clearly don't understand.

@BCML: Muslim Brotherhood, formerly on terrorist watch list, controls and seeks to impose Shariah Law on MidEast's largest nation'; US Ambassador killed in Libya due to inadequate security, Obama Administration botches explanation; President cannot bring himself to mouth words "Islamic terrorism;" relationship with Israel at low ebb (according to Israelis), Obama doesn't notice; no progress on Israel/Palestine problem; Iran is 4 years closer to nuclear weapon; etc.; etc..

It's tough for me to understand anyone suggesting Barry Obama is more substantial than his opponent, having observed his incompetence, lack of aptitude and temperament for the job over the last four years. He truly is an empty chair and only a fool wouldn't recognize it. This fellow is so self-absorbed and cynical, he can't even correct his mistakes because he doesn't think he's made any.

President Obama - You may not respect the man, respect the office.

Paul Waldman, I vehemently disagree with your assessment in this article. You show that you haven't been listening to Romney at all. I think your ears are so liberally biased that you have quite selective hearing. Romney stands for small business growth, strong family values, military might, self-reliance, government serving the people and not the people serving government, living within our means, America as a leader in the world not a follower, government getting out of people's way, states' rights, opportunity for ALL, and a lot more. Obama is also a good man, he's got positive intent, good motivation, but he's simply not got the competency (especially in the economic realm) to take this country forward. He has tried, but he's out of answers. Romney has answers, and he has a track record of success. I will vote for Mitt while wishing Obama well in all the golf games he'll continue to play once he's out of office. By the way, Romney doesn't believe in golf!!

Agitator: Don't pop the Champagne just yet. The polls are tied, the EC looks good and we have almost 2 weeks lift for Mitt to put his foot in it. Another Mourdock incident won't help either. Maybe Mitt should send in his son Tagg to lay a beating on Akin and Mourdock until they shut up. Keep watching, the next Republican pratfall is around the corner. And I don't even count the moronic stunt by Donald Trump.

I'm not a liberal, and I've listened to Romney, and its clear Mitt Romney stands for himself and his corporate buddies, and that's all. You can't trust him to keep the same story for a week, how are you going to trust him to do anything in 6 months? Or how anyone can claim they know how he's going to do it when he doesn't even know himself? Romney has rhetoric, and buzz words like "jobs" and "small business,"a track record of flip flopping -like crazy. And a track record of hostile take overs of large companies, where he laid off all the American workers, and has shipped American jobs oversees. Mitts a snake agitator, and helping him get in the oval office is a mistake.

I believe that Romney's desire to profit from his presidency, and the need to reward those corporations that are sponsoring him, will outweigh any intent he "may" have to balance the budget. It will be a Bush re-run with an Iran war that will help him stay in office for a second term, people just have short term memories it seems.

You say Obama is a good man, please take a look at what he's done with the 4 years he's had before you pass judgement:
The President's Done a Lot! Here Are More Than 200 Obama First Term Accomplishments, With Citations
http://pleasecutthecrap.typepad.com/main/what-has-obama-done-since-january-20-2009.html

I fully agree. Obama has done a very creditable job, under very tough circumstances.

Agreed. Myth Romney cares nothing about American jobs. He through Bain Capital has even started early with the town in Illinois offshoring jobs to China -http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/24/sensata-bain-mitt-romney_n_2009025.html?utm_hp_ref=elections-2012 . Further, his family's interest in the voter registration machines in OHIO suggest there will be no lines drawn between his ability to profit from the office and need to reward his people (corporations)

WW-C01: I want to show the utmost respect for your opinions. I am a level-headed guy who appreciates genuine respectful conversation and dialogue--both with like-minded and with other-minded people. In fact, before responding now I took the time to follow the link you provided and read EVERY single word of the blog posting on all that Obama has done in the past nearly 4 years. I felt I owed it to you to at least give that thorough courtesy before just throwing flame shots in a heated response. Too often people who post about Obama and/or Romney on sites like this get into generalizations, inflammatory accusations, and non-specific (often hate-filled) arguments that do nothing but defame the decent, well-intended men and women who run for public office. I like to give them ALL the benefit of the doubt. I actually have very little tolerance for people on either side who do nothing productive on sites like this but name-call, and make sweeping statements that are rooted only in fear, misinformation, partisanship-driven posturing, and frankly sometimes even outright ignorance and stupidity. So, that being said, I need to respectfully call you out on a few things you've said about Romney that I'd put in the category of sweeping generalizations that are unhelpful and meant as an attack of character. First of all, you make the sweeping that Romney 'stands for himself and his corporate buddies, and that's all.' I'm afraid that with that statement you've nearly lost all credibility with me. I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt on that and ask you to please not fall victim to this type of mentality. Otherwise, I'll go for my reasonable, level-headed political dialogue to others who I deem to be respectful and authentic in their desires to truthfully and thoroughly weigh things up prior to a final vote casting in this most important of elections. Do you really, truly believe what you said, that Romney ONLY stands for himself and his corporate buddies? If so, then I'm afraid our conversation is over. Not because I don't respect your opinion but because a statement like that immediately tells me there is too much toxic preconceived notions inside your mindset to allow for a genuine dialogue. When you say that Mitt is a snake, WELL, I just start to lose respect for you. Words like that are tainted with viciousness that don't help people come together. Of COURSE he's not a snake!! You may agree or not with policy positions, but neither HE nor OBAMA are snakes. They are decent men who are not going through the gauntlet of running for public office out of anything more than a desire to truly help this country in the best way they know how. I admire BOTH men greatly. In the end, though, I'll only be voting for one of them. I'll choose the one who I feel has the best chance, skills, experience, and attitude that can put this country on a track to a better economy, and a better future overall for my kids. I'm open to discussing things further with you. You seem MOSTLY reasonable, but I'm not interested in talking with someone who throws out some of the type of stuff you've thrown out.
WW-C01, if we can't make this kind of respectful and open dialogue possible, then how do we expect Congress to be able to do it? Let me know what your thoughts are? I've not meant this as an attack. On the contrary, I'm open to further open and honest dialogue if you are.

Romney has no ideas. Nonsense. He has a five-point plan to create jobs. It is Obama who has nothing. Just the same borrow and spend and regulate that has resulted in four years of stagnation. Your liberal bias is unbelievable. Fortunately, almost no one reads your publication.

The 5 Point Plan is rubbish. No credible economist will endorse the idea that he is going to cut taxes and lower deductions at the exact rate that will keep the Treasury whole. If you buy the 5 Point Plan I have some snake oil you may be interested in.

@BCML: Economists for Romney includes more than 400 economists including 5 Nobel prize winners. Obama's economic advisors told him his expenditures would get the unemployment rate down to 5.6% by 2010. Obama supporters are economic illiterates.

Regardless of what he says, Obama's plan will bankrupt America. Actually, part of the job is already done. The U.S. Credit Rating was downgraded twice in just 9 months under his Socialist agenda.

The bottom line is not Romney changing positions. The bottom line is Obama is the WORST president in my lifetime - 11 presidents and counting. I'd vote for Godzilla if he (or it) were running against Obama.

Amen! 4 years of the most extreme, divisive, failed, ideologue in our nation history and the nation is a disaster. Give me Gov Romney focused on GROWTH and JOBS, and I and my family will take care of our own beliefs and ideology.

You are very ignorant if you'd vote for godzilla. That is all.

Romney does believe in something--God. And that is all that matters.

Earl: Please don't vote. We need an educated and concerned populace to make democracy work. Not theologues.

My wife and I just voted for Romney. We don't need your false messiah.

Does the President need to be ideological?
In business, Romney's role has been to go in, streamline, cut waste, reorganize and draw a profit. With the presidency, I see his approach as to go in, streamline, cut waste, reorganize and while he may not draw a profit (surplus) during his term, at least bring the budget in balance.

That's mainly it.
Obviously, he'll have to work with a legislature. It is the Legislature that actually does nearly all the work in budgeting, changing policy, writing new laws and policies. The president can propose, draft a template, but everything will still be added and subtracted from that draft by Congress.

As for Foreign Policy, a key role for a president, if he surrounds himself with adults who are competent and he represents America's exceptionalism, then he should be fine.

Romney understands that his goal is to go in, get from point A to point B and work with Democrats and Republicans to get there. Social policy he'll leave to Congress or the States. Budgeting, he'll suggest, propose, cut, increase, reorganize, it doesn't matter. He is campaigning as a bi-partisan.

We have a $16 trillion debt and we need to get all the ducks in a row to prevent an economic collapse similar to the ones in Greece or Spain. With his experience in balancing company books and making a profit, I think America should be comfortable with such a President.

What the author really means is that Romney's not a secular progressive ideologue and therefore not worthy. This is typical of narrow progressive perception of a more conservative perspective.

I'm not a Romney guy. I'm a not-Obama person. Despite that, it is clear that Romney is a man of accomplishment and a man of God. Obama is neither and his s/p fans are reduced to voting for an ideology regardless of the best interests of the country. Waldman is a prime example.

Only an economic illiterate would suppose Obama has achieved any significant success dealing with the economy. Massive unemployment, the slowest recovery in modern history, unprecedented debt are the hallmarks of his reign.

Recent indications are that his Middle East policy fares no better: Benghazi lies; Muslim Bros. ruling and proposing Sharia Law for Egypt; strained relations with Israel. Elsewhere, Russia pulls out on Nuclear non-proliferation agreement . Why participate when Obama is committed to unilateral nuclear disarmament?

Romney believes in reduced expenditures, smaller, constitutional government, lower taxes and a strong military. Waldman is so narrow that he does not even notice that these things are in play.

After 4 years of UNEMPLOYMENT, DEBT, DECLINE, and Misery what does Obama believe? Well he apparently believes in ROMNESIA because that's all he's talking about. Not restoring growth, or jobs, or making life better, or the country strong. Romnesia? Gov Romney on the other hand believes in restoring GROWTH and JOBS to our nation. And he's made it clear that he's not going to let ideology get in the way of working together to RESTORE GROWTH AND JOBS to our country. And you know what? That's all I care about. RESTORING GROWTH JOBS and PROSPERITY to our country. Anybody who doesn't vote for Gov Romney and restoring JOBS AND GROWTH is an idiot! We don't need a President to tell us what we should believe in. We need a President to keep our nation Prosperous and STRONG! That is Gov Romney.

This column is absolute proof that you and Bouie live in an alternate universe where up is down and down it up where reality does not compute because in ObamaLand he rules as its supreme being.

Paul Waldman seems to be critiquing the phony Mitt Romney falsely created in $300-$400 million in slanderous ads by the Obama campaign and not the actual man. The real Mitt Romney has a 30 year track record of turning around failing businesses (80% success rate at Bain), Massachusetts while Governor (from $3B deficit to $2B surplus, 50th in jobs to 28th, credit rating upgrade, 1st in education, 1st in women in cabinet and # of women in cabinet), and fixing a corrupt and broke multinational organization with the Olympic Games in Salt Lake City in 2002. The real Mitt Romney has worked hard, contributed in both time and money to his community, has been honest, graceful, charitable,and humble (something Obama doesnt know the definition of). Given Obama's horrendous economic record, and a foreign policy success than has a focal point on getting bin Laden-- all but impossible without the interroantion and other intelligence gathering policies of Bush43 that Obama endlessly bashed as a Senator and candidate in 2008 it is Obama that is the weak candidate, failed President and now, given Benghazigate a liar to all Americans. Waldman is deluded and has Obama running against a figment of Waldman's imagination... Because when Waldman wakes up, Obama will have lost to the real Mitt Romney.

Very good article. Let's call a spade a spade - Romney is a liar. His flip flopping has crossed over to just being a flat out lies. The Republican party should be ashamed of itself for having four years to give the American public a viable candidate and they gave us Myth Romney.

For those that care, Myth Romney is not a Christian. He is a moron, I mean mormon. So we need to stop propping him up as a man of God. He is no more a man of God or morals than the man in the moon. If he was, he would not be so empty as the author suggests. The real point of the article is he has no core values upon which to stand. NONE! NADA! NILCH! Those that support him continue to overlook this basic fact by giving excuses about what Obama has or has not done.

Romney has created no business other than that which takes and guts other businesses to make money for investors. He touts his experience with the Olympics but fails to mention he asked for Federal Government money ($400m+) to prop up the floundering Utah Olympics. This from the man that doesn't beleive in the Feds providing assistance.

Myth's economic plan will take 8-10 years according to his own words and website (unless he has taken that information down) to set things straight if it works, (big "IF"). His plan is rife with holes and he is going to break America when he realizes all the flaws of his ridiculous not well thought out economic plan.

Myth Romney is a joke or more appropriately a jokester and the joke will be on the American public.

It's funny how intolerant people are of things that they themselves voted for without blinking an eye. This is what partisanship does to people.

The 12 million jobs he touts are about the number that economists forecast with no changes to policy. I'm increasingly convinced that his only aim in expanding the military is to create jobs as Reagan did. Reagan took us from the world's largest creditor nation to the world's largest debtor nation with that approach. The approach requires a scary enemy. For Reagan it was the commies, for Romney and the GOP it's the jihadists. Terrorists are criminals that need to be treated as such, not drivers of foreign policy and defense over-spending.

I truly am shocked at the complete lack of sense demonstrated by most of these comments. The only positive point I can see in Governor Romney is the single greatest piece of state legislation in the last thirty years - RomneyCare. Seventy percent of Massachusetts voters are satisfied with their health care. I would be surprised if the next nearest state is above 40%. I would vote for the author of RomneyCare if I could find that man anymore.

Basically if you do not have yours by now you should vote for Obama. It is in your best economic interest. I retired well short of 50, and would laugh at the poor Republicans who vote for Romney if he wins. Either way I benefit. Economically or ideologically. I win.

I don't know whether it is funny or sad that the same people who were down on their worshiping a community organizer four years ago are questioning a guy like Romney. They only knew Obama was black and could read from a TelePrompter better than anyone and that was enough. Now that their messiah looks like he could lose, they are finally full of questions.

Too late, it's time for Obama to be pitched out.

Since the first debate, Romney's message has been, in essence: "I can do everything Obama can do, and I can do it better, because I'm rich, Republican, and white." This message is reinforced by a barrage of ads reassuring wavering voters that they don't have to feel guilty about not voting for Obama this time around. Some time around mid-September, when things looked bleak for the Romney campaign, they seem to have come up with this approach as a sort of Hail Mary.

and it worked. Nearly every poll has him up 2%-3%. With some more campaigning in Ohio, the White House will be his.

I don't believe that, because that's an idea peddled by the news media. Voters begin to realize that Mitt Romney the real man is not the Mitt Romney portrayed to them by the DNC and news media. He's a good guy! I was not surprised during the debates by Romney's character, because I had looked for personal accounts of him, which all agreed he is kind, helpful, humble, honest, hardworking, thrifty, and funny. Those of you who didn't know to do that are smart not to believe the media's portrayal of him any longer. Nor to believe the media on Obama's greatness, for that matter. They've covered up a lot of damaging results of Obama's policies for the sake of Obama's reelection. And they reference polls weighted unrealistically towards Obama - above even 2008 levels.

Read both sides, folks, because (liberal) news media is only half the story. How can you make an informed opinion on any topic if you consider only one point of view? You can't. Thanks for listening.
www.conservativemormonmom.blogspot.com

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