With Business/Birther Quips, Romney Flip-Flops With Humor


A week or so back, fellow Voice scribe James King argued that Vice President Joe Biden brings nothing to the Democratic ticket except awkward gaffes and constant smacks to the head by the DNC. This came off the news that Biden told a crowd of mostly African-American citizens that Romney’s policies would “put y’all back in chains.” Ouch.

But the thing about Biden is that he is a consistent gaffer; throughout his career in politics, he’s been prone to mess up the names of states, the audience he’s speaking to and other sensitive subjects. So, it comes as no surprise when we read a headline that includes ‘Biden’ and ‘gaffe’ in the same sentence; Obama chose him more so for his foreign policy knowledge, not for his keen knack for bad publicity.
That’s what separates him from Romney’s unintentional statements. With Mitt, his gaffes show us a flare of Mitt that is both cruel and contrary to past statements. By now, the entire country has pretty much accepted the fact that he has flip-flopped on every policy notion argued in Congress since 1865. It’s whatever; we get it, people change over time.
But, in the past day or two, Romney has somehow ventured into a new area of flip-flopping that has been previously untouched by the Republican ticket: humor – something he has never been an expert on, except that time he told David Letterman that he was the generic guy in the photo that came with the picture frame. Whether it was unintentional or not, Romney rehashed criticisms he used himself just months ago for talking points; in one case, in the form of a joke.
Let the gaffes begin.
Flip: In June, President Obama told reporters that “the private sector was doing fine.” As a response, Restore Our Future, the SuperPAC henchman of the Romney tent, released this ad:


Flop: On Thursday night, in a dining room full of One Percent donors, Romney told his fellow profiteers that “Big Business was doing fine in many places.” Why? Because they have tax havens to hide all their money and enjoy the real luxuries of life in the meantime. No, seriously. And the sad thing is… he’s right.


Flip: He has associated himself with birther-in-chief Donald Trump for fund-raising purposes. He apologized for his son saying that his dad would release his tax returns once Obama “released his grades and birth certificate.” And he has told reporters that he believes the President was born in the United States. Romney has steered clear of a controversy that has taken over the paranoid fringe of the Right. Until…


Flop: Yesterday, Romney greeted an audience of 7,000 supporters in his hometown in Michigan. And he cracked a joke that everyone just loved:

“I love being home in this place where Ann and I were raised, where both of us were born… No one has ever asked to see my birth certificate. They know that this is the place that we were born and raised.”

Mitt has a point: no one has asked him for his birth documents (just the past five years’ worth of tax returns). Although the audience responded with some good laughter, the Obama tent was not so pleased, culminating in what could be the perfect tweet response to something like this:

After the uproar, Romney giggled to reporters:


 ‘No, no, not a swipe. I’ve said throughout the campaign, and before, there’s no question about where he was born. He was born in the United States. This was fun about us, and coming home, and humor, you know…’


LOL. Of course.