Mitt Romney failed his nation when it needed him the most, and it seems that not much has changed since then.
Like Rip Van Winkle, Romney must have been stuck in an extended slumber since he lost the election of 2012 to Barack Obama. He doesn’t realize that the Republican Party of 2012 no longer exists as he remembers and hopes.
Bitter over his failed track record as a conservative and a Republican, he’s now lashing out jealousy at his own party by attacking Donald Trump.
In 2012, Romney took on an incumbent who had an approval rating of just 42 percent going into an election year, with a 57 percent disapproval rating on the economy — the kind of numbers that make for electoral landslides against failed presidents.
In fact, since 1940, no incumbent president had been reelected with an unemployment rate above 7.5 percent … until Obama pulled it off against Romney in 2012, when unemployment was at 8.8 percent.
It was a slam-dunk opportunity for Romney to restore GOP control of the executive branch, and he choked. Badly.
Political analysts have created lists upon lists speculating about the reasons for Romney’s unnecessary defeat, but the outcome basically came down to his inability to connect with ordinary people. Farmers in Pennsylvania and manufacturers in Ohio just couldn’t relate to a guy who was ashamed of his own wealth and embarrassed about living the American dream.
He failed to improve the GOP’s performance among minorities and did terrible with blue collar workers.
In losing the eminently winnable 2012 election, Romney not only failed his party; he failed his country.
Since elections have consequences, Romney’s blunder had real consequences for our country, including the disastrous Iran deal, ongoing dysfunction in the healthcare system, the rise of ISIS, and the threats of North Korea.
Romney is indirectly responsible for each of those failures because he couldn’t come through with a victory. The funny thing is, he probably could have won handily if he was as enthusiastically critical of Obama during the campaign as he is now of President Trump.
Rather than responsibly acknowledging his own failings, Romney is taking envy-laden cheap shots at the man whose 2016 election victory revealed Romney’s political ineptitude to the world.
Donald Trump showed the GOP how to beat the Democrats, and he did it by using the exact opposite strategy from the one Romney employed just four years earlier.
President Trump won by appealing to the very voters Romney failed to impress, taking pride in his business success, and being an unabashed cheerleader for America. But first he had to nip Romney’s 2016 candidacy in the bud to ensure that the Republican Party wouldn’t repeat the mistake it made in 2012.
Romney was the first victim of President Trump’s march to the White House, forced to abort his exploration of another potential candidacy because Donald Trump made sure that GOP primary voters did not forget Romney’s previous pathetic performance. He’s also probably still feeling a bit miffed that he didn’t get the Secretary of State job he interviewed for — one of the best decisions President Trump made during the transition.
Romney embodies the cautious lethargy that kept Republicans from ending the national nightmare that was Obama’s presidency, and now he’s letting personal jealousy drive him to repeat his failed political principles. Let’s hope he’s just as effective now as he was in 2012.
Martha Boneta is a native Washingtonian, Policy Advisor and a nationally recognized farmer on her family farm, Liberty Farm