Tuesday, May 01, 2012


The Romney Presidential campaign just had a high-profile resignation today, and one that should give them pause to make a fundamental change in his/their approach. But, having seen Willard kowtow to the rightwing Republican base thus far, he probably won't. As reported by Jennifer Rubin in the Washington Post:

Richard Grenell, the openly gay spokesman recently hired to sharpen the foreign policy message of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, has resigned in the wake of a full-court press by anti-gay conservatives.

In a statement obtained by Right Turn, Grenell says:

I have decided to resign from the Romney campaign as the Foreign Policy and National Security Spokesman. While I welcomed the challenge to confront President Obama’s foreign policy failures and weak leadership on the world stage, my ability to speak clearly and forcefully on the issues has been greatly diminished by the hyper-partisan discussion of personal issues that sometimes comes from a presidential campaign. I want to thank Governor Romney for his belief in me and my abilities and his clear message to me that being openly gay was a non-issue for him and his team.

According to sources familiar with the situation, Grenell decided to resign after being kept under wraps during a time when national security issues, including the president’s ad concerning Osama bin Laden, had emerged front and center in the campaign.

Most damning:
During the two weeks after Grenell’s hiring was announced the Romney campaign did not put Grenell out to comment on national security matters and did not use him on a press foreign policy conference call. Despite the controversy in new media and in conservative circles, there was no public statement of support for Grenell by the campaign and no supportive social conservatives were enlisted to calm the waters.
As I've written before, Romney is not a leader in the true sense. He appear incapable to taking a position unpopular to his base, making a convincing moral case, and either turning them around to his point of view or at least earning widespread respect for his rectitude. He's a loser, not a leader.

Per Josh Marshall, this is Romney playing into "bitch-slap politics" without the Obama campaign even having to try that hard:

The Obama campaign has spent days hammering the claim that Mitt lacked the fortitude to make the risky choice to launch a commando raid to kill Osama bin Laden. Either it was that he said it wasn’t sufficiently important or that he said he wouldn’t violate Pakistani sovereignty to launch such an attack. In either case, the core message was ‘I was right; he was wrong.’ But as I’ve argued, the ferocity of the attack itself was meant to diminish Romney as weak and helpless, a man unable to properly defend himself.


Against that backdrop, the sudden resignation of Romney’s new foreign policy spokesman Richard Grenell came at just the wrong time since it told just the same story about Romney as the Obama campaign has been telling all week: Romney is weak.


“It’s going to be difficult for Romney to take other steps like this. And that’s what’s really frightening to me,” Fred Karger, openly gay Republican candidate for president told TPM. “It’s just too tough to stand up to these groups because they have a lot of money and power. You’ve got to be able to do that, that’s leadership.”


In other words, Romney’s actions have spoken louder than his awkward replies to the original bin Laden smackdown. In the face of attacks meant to show he can’t stand up to Osama bin Laden, Romney shows he can’t stand down the far-right homophobes in his own party.

Or more simply, as Obama campaign's Stephanie Cutter tweeted out:
“How can voters trust Romney to stand up to the Soviets & Czechoslovakia if he's folding to rt wing on hiring gay staff?
Americans don't vote for weakies for President. There's still a canyon of time to fill between now and November 6th, so maybe Mitt can turn it around, but I believe this early imprinting is just the beginning of what's really going to fill the airwaves and, as I predicted months ago, Mitt Romney will make Bob Dole look like a winner.

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