By Scott Ryan
Barack Obama is expected to pounce on Mitt Romney’s 14% tax rate during his State of the Union speech Tuesday night. In a Marketwatch column focusing on this topic, a discouraged Romney supporter named Michael commented that “Romney can’t get a break…”
Michael and Romney supporters like him have nothing to worry about because this expected attack by Obama is exactly what Romney -WANTS. We are in the midst of a GOP PRIMARY. If this were a general election, Mitt perhaps wouldn’t want this attack -BUT- right now it is a welcomed diversion.
A direct attack in a State of the Union speech would be an honor for Romney. It would give him special attention as though he is now recognized by Obama himself as his November opponent. Romney would HOPE this could serve as a “rallying cry” to get impressionable GOP voters to inadvertently participate in the charade.
Romney also needs a new media driven narrative to take the attention of GOP voters -AWAY- from his mortifying track record as a Governor and senatorial candidate.
Distracting the voters is what he has done for the past several months. At this point nobody wants to talk about Bain Capital yet he keeps trying to milk the non-issue for all he can. Here in Florida he continues running ads talking about the other candidates “attacking capitalism…” But he’s the only one talking about it. It’s a tactic similar to what you will see in this football video:
What you see here is a football player using theatrics to draw a penalty. After the whistle blows and the play is over, a defensive player of the Cleveland Browns, being provoked, ever so slightly pushes an offensive player (number 89 of the Cincinnati Bengals) and #89 throws himself backwards several feet, lands on his back and then does a back roll…
That’s similar to what Romney did with Newt when Newt made some comments about specific failed companies in which Bain invested. Mitt Romney runs on supposedly great business acumen. So for Newt to point out some examples where Romney failed, it is not by default an attack on the capitalist system. Romney, who has no political track record upon which to run (because it is all too embarrassing) seized upon an opportunity to create polarization. He then circumvented discussion of his political history.
This tax rate “controversy” will likely serve as the next version of the aforementioned strategy. Regardless of which GOP candidate you may support, most of us can agree it is ridiculous to contend that 14% isn’t ENOUGH to give these con artists in Washington. The answer isn’t that Mitt should pay MORE to the prodigals in Washington but rather EVERYONE ELSE should pay the same low rate as Mitt.
I can foresee the moderate Murdoch media going on a 24 hour a day campaign featuring Romney as a victim and subliminally manipulating viewers into joining the rally to Mitt’s defense… That’s the way they operate. They did it ad nauseum with the Bain non-issue turned controversy – and you can count on this being their next desperate campaign strategy.
I’ve maintained that Romney is Obama’s “dream opponent” because Romney would inoculate Obama on his most vulnerable weaknesses, having recently maintained the same positions as Obama when he was last in government.
If the Administration really makes an issue of this tax return, that is further confirmation that they are throwing Mitt’s campaign a bone with which to run.