Does anybody in the Romney campaign even care anymore? Because it's obvious that the only hope for any kind of close race is to try to control who gets to vote. But that is in the third act. Right now just watching the slow motion crash that is the Romney campaign is too fascinating not to take your eyes off of no matter how badly you want to.
Take what is being discussed as the "You didn't build that" controversy. The campaign apparently feels government is so worthless it is bad to acknowledge the roads, electrical grids, water and sewer systems that comprise the infrastructure upon which we all rely. So they take four words from a 25 minute presidential speech, “You didn't build that,” and immediately declare that Obama hates small businesses.
For the record, here is the entire segment of the speech in question: “If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
That seems to be a rather standard campaign attack ad, but only the campaign can so
hilariously fail in the execution of said attack ad: The “self-made” businesses were all beneficiaries of not only generous government help but are willing to go on camera and (not)mention that fact.
In one Romney campaign ad, an incredulous business owner responds to Obama's remarks by saying, "My father's hands didn't build this company? My hands didn't build this company? My son's hands aren't building this company?"
Of course Scott Horsley of NPR has some details the provide the blowback:
"I was actually at the Gilchrist metal fabricating plant last September. That's actually where [former presidential candidate] Jon Huntsman unveiled his jobs plan, and it's a neat company. They pay good wages. They have good benefits for their employees. But it's not entirely self-made by Gilchrist and his family. The Union Leader newspaper, not exactly a liberal rag, has pointed out Gilchrist was the beneficiary of tax exempt revenue bonds to help finance a factory. The company also got a loan from the Small Business Administration, and they've gotten contracts from the Navy and the Coast Guard totaling about $90,000 last year."
Was is just too hard to find some successful small business owners who weren't helped by government? Or were government contractors? C'mon Team Romney - there must be someone you could use in an ad that doesn't make you or them look like total hypocrites. Or is it that you just don't care? Do you think the standard attack ads of campaigns past will win this election? Against this president? I can't wait for the debates.
And of course now he's taken the show on the road.
If I were a Republican I would be really pissed.