Mitt Romney, we discovered, actually believes everything he has been saying on the stump since 2007 and before. Barack Obama, we again noted, is at his most honest when his surroundings and upbringing manifest themselves in his advocacy of redistributionist policies.
First, a cautionary tale. Then, a bit of comfort.
Where we need to exhibit caution is in our handling, consumption and dissemination of Barack Obama’s 1998 interview in which he confirmed that he actually does favor and believe in the redistribution of wealth. We know this about Barack Obama. We litigated these ideological facts ad nauseum in 2008. It didn’t work.
We know that Obama did not believe that the United States Constitution went far enough to implement redistributionist solutions to perceived inequalities. We know that Obama would like nothing more than to stifle the making class and impede revenue in the name of elevating the taking class and implementing his vision of “fairness.” We know that he hung out with Marxists, radical feminists and anti-colonialists in college. We know that he sat in the pews for two decades while Rev. Jeremiah Wright exercised that enormous, anti-American chip on his shoulder.
We tried–in vain–to make these arguments in 2008 in part because they needed to be made in order to better establish the kind of character exhibited by the media’s and the left’s Chosen One. We also made those arguments because, well, we didn’t have much of a record on Barack Obama. He voted “present” most of the time. He really wasn’t around all that much regardless.
Now, however, we have a stark presidential record on President Barack Obama. The trick here is not to find ourselves once again re-litigating Barack Obama’s ideology but, instead, to relate the facts, figures, numbers and consequences of Barack Obama’s record to that ideology. Don’t just quote the unemployment levels; explain why they’re like they are. Don’t just talk about the gas prices; show how Barack Obama’s plans and record have made those prices double.
We finally have substance. Let’s use it.
Insofar as Mitt Romney’s secretly-taped videos are concerned — my goodness, they are refreshing! Yes, they provide a means for being instructive about media bias (Remember how James O’Keefe’s secret videos were received by the press? Remember how we had a foreign ambassador murdered only a few days ago?) but they’re so much more than that — they should cement support for Romney on the right.
Like it or not, the concern about Mitt Romney on the right, for the most part, has been whether or not he is in essence a political opportunist, about whether or not the evolution which has led him to be the nominee for an increasingly libertarian GOP is heartfelt or merely convenient. Truth be told, I had my own concerns about him — while I supported him in 2008 as a slightly-more-conservative-alternative to Sen. John McCain, as recently as four or five months ago I expressed dismay that Romney still has difficulty articulating the organic nature of fiscal conservatism.
The off-the-cuff comments from Romney should, in fact, assuage concerns of those on the right. This is Mitt Romney at his least rehearsed, at his most honest. Were there problems with the 47 percent number? Sure, in that it did not take into account those on social security who have earned every bit of their benefits. But those inaccuracies were not meant for public consumption and, in fact, should further reassure conservatives of the extent that those statements reflect what Mitt Romney feels in his heart.
This election was never about the undecideds. It has always been about each party rallying its base and, at the end of the day, which base is bigger and will come out to the polls in greater force. These videos go a long way to further rally an already excited–and already larger–base on the right.
I want a candidate who will speak the unvarnished truth. I want a candidate who understands and condemns the shift in the balance between makers and takers in America. I want a candidate who comprehends that the policies of Barack Obama and the left are indeed creating victims in this country, and that more often than not those people who blindly buy into said policies are the ones who are stifled because of them. I think most Americans do, too, and that’s where Erick Erickson’s piece from earlier today,Mitt Romney’s Remarks are Another Chick-Fil-A Moment,hits the ball out of the park.
So it is, I think, with Mitt Romney’s comments. I think the media and the left have badly misread the American mood on this. On CNN yesterday, I spent a fair amount of time with Kate Bolduan and Joe Johns, two of my favorite people. They kept focusing on Mitt Romney’s characterization of the word “victims.”
What I explained to them and what I think the media misses is that many of the people the media would claim Mitt Romney described as “victims’ weren’t who Mitt Romney was speaking about. And those people intrinsically know it. They may technically fall into the category Mitt Romney described as government dependent victims, but they know he’s not talking about them. He’s talking about the people they also are talking about.
But more than that, and this is really what the left and media miss, a fair number of those people in the 47% are not there by choice. They are there by Barack Obama’s economic policies. And they absolutely understand that Barack Obama’s policies got them there. All they need to hear from Mitt Romney is that he really does get it and really will fix the problem, not just manage the decline of the nation as his primary opponents claimed he would.
That off the cuff, off the record talk was what they needed to hear. Mitt Romney recognizes we have a problem with government dependency, as do a majority of Americans. But more importantly, Mitt Romney will improve the lives of that 47% by growing the private sector, not redistributing pieces of the economic pie.
Personally, I was hesitant with regard to Mitt Romney. I am hesitant no more. Between his selection of Paul Ryan and this unsolicited glimpse into what he feels to his core, my concerns are nil. I can finally–FINALLY–say that, this November, I will be voting for my candidate instead of merely voting against the other guy.
Jeff Schreiber, the founder and managing editor of America’s Right, is a family law attorney in the outskirts of Charleston, South Carolina. He is the owner of Lowcountry Divorce & Family Law, LLC, a solo law practice established in July 2012