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The Insiders
Posted at 08:25 AM ET, 04/18/2012

Mitt Romney should quit trying to connect

And now for more unsolicited free advice. With all the talk about Mitt Romney being unable to connect with real voters, I have another approach to offer him: Quit trying. Not “connecting” is what the media wants to see. So they look for ways to illustrate the Romney remoteness from voters. Trying to appease them is a trap. The harder you try to force “connectiveness,” whatever that is, the more awkward it will appear and the more harshly the Romney opponents will highlight their predetermined failure.

Mitt Romney should be the serious candidate running for president. Good grief, the economy is in the tank, Iran is building a bomb, the world thinks China is the place to be, and our own government officials can't behave in Vegas or Cartagena. Lose the blue jeans, talk seriously about these problems, and let your critics who say they need a hug go to Mr. Teleprompter Prose for their romance. Except Obama won't have them. Their love for him is not reciprocated but they can’t admit it.

Is the president really able to connect, or is that just another quality that his enablers have superimposed on the man that they want to fawn over? They all say he connects so they look for ways to prove it.

I think it is a fraud. Somebody explain to me the common touch and human qualities that Obama so warmly exudes. I can’t see them. The man is cool, detached, probably a bit selfish, and I can't think of any group in Washington he has charmed, broadened his influence with, and therefore become more effective in governing. Even though people wish him well, he has proven unable to form anything resembling a bipartisan governing coalition on any major issue in Washington.

In campaigns, it is important to be likable and durable, but only when compared to the other guy. Romney is happy; he laughs, he enjoys himself, he even laughs at himself. Can you really say the same about Obama? Really? The whole idea that there is a connection deficit is concocted to criticize Romney when they can't think of anything else.

So keep it serious, Gov. Romney — talk about what matters and the rest will take care of itself. It is decided that the anointed one is also the charming one, and if you challenge that, you will just get attacked. Over time the propaganda will exhaust itself and the voters will see for themselves.

By  |  08:25 AM ET, 04/18/2012

 
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