Thursday, April 26, 2012

Michael Tomasky: Romney Can't Retreat From Extreme Right Statements

When Romney advisor Eric Fehrnstrom compared campaigning to an "Etch-A-Sketch" in which one can "reset" one's positions, he exposed his candidate's flip-flopping and shameless pandering. While Romney stands for nothing but getting elected, his campaign positions have been so consistently and vehemently to the right that it's going to be difficult to backtrack (and doing so would heighten conservative mistrust of Romney). The Obama campaign is well aware of this, as is evident from a recent ad featuring Romney's statements. Writing in the New York Review of Books, Michael Tomasky (left) recounts the many divisive and extreme stances that Romney has taken–and comments that the Republican candidate can't simply do another "Etch-A-Sketch"-style "reset." Excerpts from "How to Follow Our Weird Politics":

...Eric Fehrnstrom, aside from being glib, was wrong about expressed views being ephemeral. Romney can’t retreat from endorsing Paul Ryan’s budget and its dark implications for Medicare. He can’t say that he was just kidding about supporting the recent Republican congressional bill that sought to give not just religious institutions but any employers the right to deny contraceptive coverage on moral grounds, or about his vow to defund Planned Parenthood.

He can’t back away from a tax proposal designed to placate the far right, a plan that makes Bush’s 2000 proposal look positively generous to the middle class. He can’t renounce his support for Arizona’s harsh immigration laws. He can’t magically undo having opposed the auto industry bailout...

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