Bad news from new book: Obama doesn’t like Romney

posted at 9:24 pm on August 6, 2012 by Allahpundit

When a presidential race turns as bland as this one has, a little garlic isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

I wonder if the feeling’s mutual or if Mitt, the consummate manager, is all business in getting this project done.

“One factor made the 2012 grind bearable and at times even fun for Obama: he began campaign preparations feeling neutral about Romney, but like the former governor’s GOP opponents in 2008 and 2012, he quickly developed a genuine disdain for the main. That scorn stoked Obama’s competitive fire, got his head in the game, which came as a relief to some Obama aides who had seen his interest flag when he didn’t feel motivated to crush the opposition. Obama, a person close to him told me, didn’t even feel this strongly about conservative, combative House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the Hill Republican he disliked the most. At least Cantor stood for something, he’d say.”

“When he talked about Romney, aides picked up a level of anger he never had for Clinton or McCain, even after Sarah Palin was picked as his running mate. ‘There was a baseline of respect for John McCain. The president always thought he was an honorable man and a war hero,’ said a longtime Obama adviser. ‘That doesn’t hold true for Romney. He was no goddamned war hero.’”

Romney’s opponents do tend to get personal with him in unusual ways, as this vivid Time story from 2008 on the “I hate Romney” club among Republican candidates illustrates. Gingrich and Santorum were openly irritated with him during this year’s primaries too, but that could be dismissed as sour grapes over how effective his negative ads were. Four years ago, by contrast, Romney was never a real frontrunner and yet McCain and Fred Thompson were openly laughing at him during one debate. I don’t quite understand what the problem is. Maybe they resent his gigantic fundraising (and, in 2008, his self-financing) and his opportunism in flip-flopping, but those are tools of the trade. If Romney’s a different kind of pol, it’s a difference in degree, not in kind. And yet, his opponents react strongly to him. Very odd.

But that’s assuming you believe the story about Obama’s disdain. Putting it out there that he dislikes Romney personally helps him politically, I think, because it gives his base an extra reason to get motivated and it makes Obama’s own opportunistic nastiness seem less cynical and calculated. (It’s from the heart!) On the other hand, while digging through our archives to see how Obama and Romney interacted four years ago (which they didn’t do much), I stumbled upon this instant classic from October 2007 about the “new tone” The One was showing even at the height of Hopenchange:

“Can you describe the differences between yourself and Osama Bin Laden?” a voter asked Senator Obama, D-Ill., on Wednesday during a town hall in Dover, New Hampshire.

Laughing of the voter’s question, Obama replied, “Well, you know, Mitt Romney’s been very confused about this,” referencing a recent gaffe committed by Mitt Romney in which the former Massachusetts governor and potential Republican rival repeatedly used Obama’s name instead of Osama Bin Laden’s name during a discussion of terrorism at an event Tuesday in South Carolina…

But then Obama, who intially seemed to shrug off Romney’s comments, continued, “And I think when Romney starts saying this stuff — sometimes it might be honest mistakes, sometimes no. You don’t know.”

“But I have no doubt that there will be some of that, trying to make me into this foreign, you know, odd, clearly black person. And to scare people,” Obama concluded.

Prominent Democrats had made the Osama/Obama mistake too, most notably Teddy Kennedy, so it says a lot that O was willing to casually drop a megaton bomb like that on Romney without knowing more about him. At best, he thought ill enough of Romney at the time to wonder aloud about how innocent his mistake really was, which means the story about his newfound disdain for Mitt is bogus. At worst, he didn’t really doubt that it was an innocent mistake but couldn’t resist pushing a racism charge anyway because he knew it’d be a powerful shield for him down the line during the general election if he made it that far. Bad either way, but not surprising.

Update: A jokey dig, but the thought of “stealing” from the poor to give to the rich is the subtext:

Unveiling a new zinger against his opponent, President Obama tonight said Mitt Romney’s tax plan amounts to “Robin Hood in reverse” because it would take money from the poor to help the rich.

“It’s Romney Hood,” the president said to uproarious laughter and applause from about 500 supporters who paid $500 each to attend a fundraiser in Stamford, Conn.


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from driving to the ditch and drinking slurpees to romneyhood….

pathetic

cmsinaz on August 7, 2012 at 7:11 AM

Unveiling a new zinger against his opponent, President Obama tonight said Mitt Romney’s tax plan amounts to “Robin Hood in reverse” because it would take money from the poor to help the rich.

So Mr. President:

What do you call it when your wife costs the American taxpayer millions on vacation-related expenses? Or your brat goes off with TWENTY FOUR secret service agents for a school trip to Mexico? Why don’t you and your entire filthy family pay your fair share for these outings? You have some nerve talking about stealing when your spouse can’t even put down the lobster long enough to wipe the melted butter from her chin on her outings on the public dime! It’s time to get rid of the whole lot of you worthless grifters.

Happy Nomad on August 7, 2012 at 7:35 AM

A Mormon thing? Easy.
Everyone tip toes around it…I wont. A few here had the guts to say it how it was. Moe Identity Poli’s.
Would explain a lot around here.

I dont think buy danish but a handful of others. No one says it..I will.

bazil9 on August 6, 2012 at 10:37 PM

WTF does this comment mean? Any translators out there who can help me out?

Buy Danish on August 7, 2012 at 7:41 AM

Happy Nomad on August 7, 2012 at 7:35 AM

+1

cmsinaz on August 7, 2012 at 7:42 AM

Obama doesn’t like Mitt Romney because Romney represents everything Obama has spent his life wanting to be, but isn’t. Romney is white, good looking, moral, and incredibly rich. He earned his way into Harvard, and then turned in a stellar performance, earning both a J.D. and an M.B.A. and graduating with a nearly perfect grade point average in both programs. Romney then became a very successful and respected businessman.

Obama’s only business experience was working at a business newsletter after graduating from Columbia. In his book, Obama wrote about being “behind enemy lines” in this job. It was basically just a clerical position, and Obama and his fellow co-workers all wore casual clothes to work every day and worked in tiny cubicles, not offices. But in his book, Obama turned his job into an executive position. He gave himself his own personal secretary, dressed himself in three-piece suits, and had himself making phone calls to important people and conducting negotiations and behaving like he was somebody. Obama’s account of this job in his book was a complete fantasy (that he did not disclose to the reader), but it reveals how Obama wished his life had been. Obama wanted to be someone like Mitt Romney, but he lacked the smarts and the qualifications.

AZCoyote on August 7, 2012 at 8:02 AM

A Mormon thing? Easy.
Everyone tip toes around it…I wont. A few here had the guts to say it how it was. Moe Identity Poli’s.
Would explain a lot around here.

I dont think buy danish but a handful of others. No one says it..I will.

bazil9 on August 6, 2012 at 10:37 PM
WTF does this comment mean? Any translators out there who can help me out?

Buy Danish on August 7, 2012 at 7:41 AM

It doesn’t mean anything. Just another hack for Obama. They mumble a lot and are very confused.

Cherokee on August 7, 2012 at 8:04 AM

I don’t believe that the quote represents anything that reflects Obama’s feelings at all. I suggest that the history of Obama’s attitudes towards Romney is made up to serve the cause of Obama’s campaign.

thuja on August 7, 2012 at 8:13 AM

How is it that many in the public still give think that Obama is likeable? Everytime I see him he looks at those around him with disdain. His own self aggrandizement is very annoying and he lies almost every time he opens his mouth. He choses aquaintances and friends who have the worst reputations. He is purposely trying to divide the country into social classes pitting american against american. How can anyone possibly like this guy? The guy is an insult to the office he holds, and in my humble opinion the worst sort of person. He may be a good father and husband, but other than that he’s an absolutely grating and aggravating person.

buckeyerich on August 7, 2012 at 11:07 AM

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