Skip to main content

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney holds a grassroots events on jobs and the economy in Kirkwood Park in Kirkwood, Missouri, March 13, 2012.
It'll take more than a pair of jeans to make Mitt Romney seem like a man of the people.
To win the must-win state of Ohio, Mitt Romney needs to flip a lot of votes that went to Barack Obama in 2008. So far, poll after poll finds him failing to do that. The Atlantic's Molly Ball went to Ohio coal country and reports that, while white working-class suspicion of Obama is real, many of those same people are even more suspicious of Romney the plutocrat:
"I think Obama's more for the regular working class people, and Romney's for the big business and the well-to-do," said Eric Burkhead, the road and cemetery superintendent for Kirkwood Township, working on a truck in the gravel driveway of the local garage. The 66-year-old didn't like what he saw happening with coal and wasn't wild about Obamacare, but he planned to vote for Obama.

I heard it over and over again from Ohioans -- the idea that Romney stands for the wealthy and not for them. Obama's depiction of his rival as an out-of-touch rich guy, which has gotten no little assistance from Romney himself, has made a deep and effective impression with these self-consciously working-class voters.

Romney's so out of touch on this front that he apparently doesn't even understand what the problem is:
“It’s difficult for him to understand why people would think of him not understanding their daily travails because of his enormous wealth,” said Douglas Gross, who chaired Romney’s 2008 campaign in Iowa but is not involved with his campaign now. Romney perceives that he’s “lived his own life in a way that’s not extravagant, [and so] he doesn’t understand why people wouldn’t think he understands their pain.”

Gross recalls confronting Romney directly on this gulf in their first meeting. “I asked him, ‘You’re an incredibly successful guy and can you relate to average folks in the cafes of Iowa?’ and he found that question insulting and refused to answer it. To me, that’s the microcosm of the problem.”

It's not just a matter of being able to shoot the shit and pretend you get it, either. Romney doesn't get that having spent his career and made his millions shipping good jobs overseas and creating low-wage jobs here in the U.S. might make people question his commitment to creating jobs—let alone jobs that can support a family. And by and large, voters aren't as stupid as Romney thinks they are and needs them to be.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site