Mitt’s Mean Streak

Is Romney less Father Knows Best and more Eddie Haskell with a mean streak? 

Mitt Romney has always struck me as the Ward Cleaver type. With his “Gee, whiz” vocabulary and stuffed shirt style, watching this 1950s-esque candidate on the 2012 campaign trail feels like watching Back to the Future, Part Whatever: Red, White and Whiter. The lead is played by Max Headroom’s even less cool and more stilted cousin, and the movie is a mostly dull but occasionally funny account of his quest for the White (of course) House.


Romney (Photo credit: Talk Radio News Service)

Incidents like Romney crating the family dog then strapping it to the roof of the car for a cross-country road trip have only served to confirm my impression. In Romney’s world, he isn’t often called on to handle every day chores like feeding or walking a dog, much less tackling more unusual challenges like how to humanely transport a pet on a long road trip when the car is already bursting at the seams with children.

And in Romney’s everyday life, he doesn’t often encounter people from different socio-economic backgrounds. So, when the campaign trail takes him to visit places where most Americans actually live, it’s a little like watching a variation of Borat — but instead of it being a Kazakhstani man who is out of step with life in America, it features a time-encapsulated rich white guy. In one uncomfortable but hilarious scene a clearly under-exposed Romney can’t even get through a quick photo op with a few of-color potential supporters without lapsing into the chorus of Baha Men’s “Who Let the Dogs Out.” Ouch. Ouch-ouch-ouch!