Mitt Romney & the economy

While Kombiz is right to point out Romney’s repeated failure in claiming credit for job creation as Governor of Massachusetts, the Romney campaign sent out a fundraising email that drives donors to a landing page with the above web video embedded. Beyond the silliness of a campaign sending out a fundraiser to a video that starts “Today the unemployment rate rose to 9.2%” when that happened this past Friday, we get to see the silliness of a campaign stealing a poster from a British politician two and a half decades ago. I have no clue how many independent voters (1) know who Margaret Thatcher is, (2) know a lot about the British Labour Party and (3) can contextualize the iconic Thatcher anti-Labour poster and campaign slogan from 1979 in a way that resonates with Romney’s edited version of it. See, “Labour isn’t working” makes sense because Labour should work – it is work! “Obama isn’t working” is just a hit on Obama. It doesn’t raise larger questions about his party nor is it normative about what Obama should be doing in a self-evident way.

Anyway, pardon my digression. The larger point is that despite the good objections Kombiz (and many other liberal bloggers) have made about how awful Mitt Romney’s record of job creation is, the Romney campaign still thinks that they are best served by attacking the President’s economic record. And while they’ve taken Plouffe’s comment horribly out of context in the video, the larger crime is that Mitt Romney is actively in favor of policies which would guarantee that unemployment would rise and the social safety net would be cut in order to benefit the richest Americans. There is something so deeply cynical about Romney’s willingness to pursue this line of attack that it’s quite revolting. Of course at the same time, this is an attack that could be made against the President by someone of either political party and the larger problem for the President is that regardless of how the unemployment number affects individual voters’ decision-making process, a high unemployment percentage is indicative of an economy that isn’t working for a large number of Americans.

Romney isn’t going to just stop hitting the President on the economy. He is going to keep making these web videos and hammering on the fact that the economy stinks. Sadly I don’t think there’s a lot of disagreement outside of Washington that the economy stinks. But for Mitt Romney to pursue this, it’s largely like him having a campaign saying, “The Wire is a really great show.” Of course it’s true, but it doesn’t tell us anything about Mitt Romney…other than the fact that he’s willing to state the obvious about the economy.

Originally posted at AMERICAblog Elections: The Right’s Field

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