Tuesday, January 10, 2012

“I like being able to fire people who provide services to me"
So it finally happened to the Republican front-runner, yes. Mitt Romney at the worst first possible moment had his worst possible moment. From day one in this campaign, Mitt has been soaring above the rest of the field. Easily avoiding any bumps in the road. Ignoring interviews and generally acting as if he’s the predestined winner. And for the most part its worked. But a funny thing happened on the way to his landslide victory. His adversaries finally hit pay dirt. They figured out Mitt’s weakness. They cut thru all his layers of bull and finally took off their gloves. The question being, is it too late to change todays’ primary results? Either way, this past weekend, the sharks finally began to draw blood. 
The first blow that landed was from former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman. From out of know where, Mr. Huntsman has entered the race. It occurred after Mitt Romney’s complaint about Jon Huntsman working under President Obama:
“I think we serve our country first by standing for people who believe in conservative principles and doing everything in our power to promote an agenda that does not include President Obama’s agenda. I think the decision to go and work for President Obama is one which you took,” he continued “I don’t disrespect your decision to do that. I just think it’s most likely that the person who should represent our party running against President Obama is not someone who called him a remarkable leader and went to be his ambassador in China.”
Mr. Huntsman hit the ball out the park with his response
“This nation is divided, because of attitudes like that,”  
And for the first time in these debates, the crowds cheered for a good reason. Not against gays, not against women’s rights, not even against bigotry. But against all the crap that Romney has been piling on in his eternal quest for the White House. Huntsman continued:
”The American people are tired of the partisan division. They have had enough. There is no trust left among the American people in the institutions of power and among the American people and our elected officials.”
In that instant you could hear a pin drop. This was the opening bell for the primary fight that’s occurring today. And the next day on the campaign trail, Mr. Huntsman continued:
“First of all, with respect to Governor Romney, you know, there are a lot of people who are tuning in this morning. And I’m sure they’re terribly confused after watching all of this political spin up here. I was criticized last night by Governor Romney for putting my country first,” said Mr. Huntsman. “He criticized me while he was out raising money for serving my country in China. Yes, under a Democrat. Like my two sons are doing in the United States Navy. They’re not asking what political affiliation the president is. I wanna be very clear with the people here in New Hampshire and this country. I will always put my country first.  And I think that’s important to them.”
Of note: The president appointed Mr. Huntsman to his position in August of 2009. He then retired from that post in January of 2010 to pursue a run for the Republican nomination..
[An aside: Mr. Huntsman I need to congratulate you, finally we have someone in the race that actually could make it interesting. A real alternative to President Obama. Actually someone who could win the whole thing. A Real challenge. Democrats start worrying.]
And yesterday, without realizing it, Mitt shot the arrow thru his own heart. By expressing a sentiment that many of us feel, but saying it the wrong way. Mitt has inadvertently given his adversaries their tag line. Their slogan against Mitt. Brilliantly using his own words and own voice against him. And the beauty in all this is seeing the glee in their faces. Finally we got him. Finally Mitt’s not so unbeatable. Finally they really have a chance to defeat Goliath. One of them could actually become President. God did speak to them. [Okay, back to reality]
The other candidates have seized on Romney’s weaknesses, beginning to draw a real distinction between the truth of Romney accomplishments and the ways he’s been touting them.  So each one of them came out swinging with great lines of their own. 
"Gov. Romney enjoys firing people. I enjoy creating jobs," Jon Huntsman 
"If you're a victim of Bain Capital's downsizing, it's the ultimate insult for Mitt Romney to come to South Carolina to tell you he feels your pain. Because he caused it," "I have no doubt that Mitt Romney was worried about pink slips - whether he'd have enough of them to hand out." Rick Perry continued "I had to shake my head yesterday when one of the wealthiest men, I suppose, that's ever run for the presidency of the United States -- the son of a multimillionaire -- Mitt Romney, he said, 'I know what its like to worry about whether you're going to get fired,"  Perry continued "'There were a couple of times when I wondered whether I was going to get a pink slip.' He actually said this. Now, I have no doubt that Mitt Romney was worried about pink slips, whether he was going to have enough of them to hand out."
"What's clear is he likes firing people," Jon Huntsman added. "I like creating jobs."
My friends, me thinks we now have a race. It’s very possible this ‘accident’ by Mitt could be his undoing. Perhaps Huntsman, or Santorum or even Newt will jump ahead and never look back. All I know is that the republican race has just really begun. How fitting it happens on the day of it's first primary.
Just one man’s opinion
© Neil Feigeles, Neilizms, Tues, Jan. 10, 2012

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