I Voted for Mitt Romney

I voted for Mitt Romney yesterday, knowing he would lose badly because he ran a horrible campaign. As I lamented to my sons before the election that Romney was going to be slaughtered in an election President Obama virtually dropped in his lap with his inept leadership, they both commented, “How can you vote for somebody who runs such a stupid campaign?”

Unfortunately, I did not have a good answer, except that my vote was a protest against Obama’s weak leadership.

I have given quite a bit of thought to how Romney could have won the election against Obama, a lousy president yet capable candidate with a very smart group of people guiding his moves.

Mitt Romney was badly wounded by the Republican primary. Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum, two guys who were minor league candidates, ambushed him from the right flank. To blunt their barrage, Romney scurried to the right, which Obama then skillfully used to define Romney to the public. Romney was not nimble or clever enough to run back to the center after the primary season. I see Romney as an ambitious guy, driven to become President, thus surpassing his father who ran for the office but failed to get close.

What seemingly happened to Mitt was that he apparently was convinced by the characters like Gingrich that the country would accept right wing social policy, when Romney’s best chance was to run as a smart business guy – a technocrat – who could be the country’s capable CEO and forge compromises with Congress that Obama couldn’t.

Romney had the misfortune of hearing his idiotic remark about the 47% pop up, yet he still should have won against 8% unemployment, and Obama’s floundering on the economy.

This is what I would have advised Mitt, if he had asked.

1) You cannot win if you are the “old white man’s candidate.” There are just not enough of those folks who vote to get you to 270 electoral votes. Even if you concede African-Americans to Barack, you still need Latinos, women, and young people. So how do you get them and still hold your base? It’s not so hard. COME OUT for the Dream Act. This would have one-upped Obama and identified Romney as someone who was sympathetic to young undocumented immigrants who were adding value to the country. Such a stance would have cost him virtually nothing on the Right, but could have staunched the 70-30 pasting the GOP took from Latinos. George Bush got 41% of Hispanic voters in 2000. The Latino community has a conservative family oriented bent. The Democrats owned it in this election but they did not have to.

2) The gender gap could have been bridged if Romney had chosen a strong woman for Vice President, and I am not talking about Sarah Palin. In one of his infamous “binders” he could have found a woman like, well, Ann Romney who could have given his candidacy a softer, family friendly tone.

3) Romney ran a poll driven paint by the numbers campaign. He did not take risks or get out of his comfort zone. He did not talk to young people. He was irrelevant. To combat this Mitt should have advocated for the “decriminalization of marijuana.” The country is moving in this direction and he could have justified it to his base as a way to support law enforcement in America and reduce the profits of the drug cartels. He would have outflanked Obama with younger people and gained respect as a courageous and creative politician.

A Republican candidate who could not beat an unsuccessful and often arrogant or diffident Barack Obama probably did not deserve to become our President.

Question: Did Mitt Romney cost the Republicans the presidency in 2012?

Lloyd Graff is Owner and Chief Space Filler of Today’s Machining World, and Owner and Chief Space-Filler of Graff-Pinkert & Co.

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64 thoughts on “I Voted for Mitt Romney

  1. AvatarSteve S.

    Well my fellow Americans,We didn’t do our part.As a resident of Crook county IL,I can’t say i’m shocked.This has been a way of life in politics in this state.Their are 3rd world countries that are better run than IL.By the way owned and operated by the dems for 40 years.Rubber stamps to the unions.That being said you control your own future,to a point.Those of you who don’t live in IL,Don’t understand what politics is all about.Obama couldn’t win on the merits,So you take the man apart at the seams (see Jack Ryan).This is Axlrod’s M.O. So unless i missed it Obama didn’t run on his record,He ran by making Mitt look like a out of touch rich guy.Classic Chicago politics.The problem is in Congress,For the most part they are of touch with what makes the country great.We still are great,For now.I think we all agree that you can’t spend your way out of this.Common sense needs to apply here.Congress,Obama are the rich.Open your eyes.If Obama wants fairness across the board,Make congress comply to Obamacare.Insist on it people.We are becoming second class citizens,Reguardless of race,creed or color.Am i disappointed Romey didn’t win,Yea.Only for the fact that his business skills are far better than Obama’s.The voting seems to show people want theirs now.Hopefully the country come’s to it’s senses in short order.Or forget gold,you’ll need lead.These are crazy times in business and life.Well that’s my 2 cents.Good luck to all.

  2. AvatarJim Urmson

    The Republicans will never be able field a viable candidate as long as they graded in the primary season on topics that have nothing to do with governing (abortion, god)
    It would also be nice if they were allowed to discuss realistic fiscal policy without being castrated for it.

  3. AvatarTom

    I think your post typifies the larger problem in the Republican party and is specifically the reason Romney lost. Certainly the reason he lost my vote. Rather than try to figure out how to coerce or bribe some group of people into voting for your party how about presenting detailed ideas on how you will make this country better in the future. And stop trying to win a group of people by telling them what they want to hear. Romney spent the entire campaign doing this. He was Jekyll and Hyde depending on where he was speaking. The Republican party should a) stop trying to force their moral and religious beliefs on everyone. Back off issues of people’s right to control their own lives, stop justifying crimes on religious grounds and b) actually present details on how they can fix the problems of this country. Stop inane negative ads attacking the democrats as socialists (oh please!) what BS. If Obama has failed as president it is only that our country is at a time where it needs a visionary leader (a JFK as it were) that challenges us to strive for a (specific) common long term goal and he has not done that – people who voted for him in 2008 had hoped he would.

    I am an independent. I could be a considered a fiscally conservative democrat in terms of my views. If the Republicans want me to vote for their candidate, give me some real visionary plans for the future and not just bs bullet points, stop trying to cater to the rich, and present IDEAS (not just words) that show you ACTUALLY care for the people who make this country work (that would be everyone). Give me a leader who can think for him/her-self and has a true long term goal for the USA.

    Really people, the whole socialist thing is just so unbelievably stupid and overblown. All the dire predictions of the that that were made by the taking heads in 2008 didn’t come true (duh!) and it isn’t going to happen. We have several branches of government that were carefully constructed to prevent any one of them (or any one person) from wreaking havoc. It has worked thus far. The 2nd Bush tried his best to undo those balances and even he couldn’t pull it off.

    Stop with the name calling and end-of-world talk and let’s work actually come together to strive for something good.

  4. AvatarAlbert B. Albrecht

    Well Obama will be our president for another four years in spite of a continuing failed economy, uncontrolled deficit spending, and Obamacare. Over the past four years Obama has move America from a conservative Christian democracy to a liberal socialistic democracy. And this is the real tragedy of his administration. We will be faced with four more years of the political status quo with gridlock in Washington between a democratic senate and republican house. With Osama’s support of gay marriages, mixed marriages, and single parents there has been a decline in family values, and morals. There continues to be widening of the gap between the upper 1% and the lower income level; all at the expense of the middle class.

    The election emerged as a choice of two very different views of government. The Obama view of a government that plays a major row in American lives with continued welfare and spending, the other the Romney view of a less obtrusive government as a facilitator for private enterprise. Unfortunately Obama had the vote of the blacks, Hispanics, young women, and the unions. Romney had the vote of the white males, married women, and older generation. And in the end Romney carried too much baggage – his Bain relationship, not supporting the auto bailout, position on immigration, and remarks about the 47% of Americans who do not pay any Federal taxes and depend upon welfare – all worked against him.

    Most unfortunate is the average person votes social issues and those that affect manufacturing and creating jobs and exports get lost at the voting polls. The U.S no longer leads in many areas of manufacturing, and continues to have a negative trade balance with many countries including China, Japan, Germany, & Italy. Obama has cut tax relief for renewable energy – wind turbines, and placed a 2.3% tax on all medical devices to pay for Obamacare. He has placed into effect more regulatory policies on manufacturing than any past president. He has failed to address issues such as the corporate tax, which in the U.S. is the highest of any nation except Japan, escalating health costs, and regulatory controls that make U.S. manufacturers non-competitive in world markets. The unemployment rate remains at 7.9%. I am afraid the next four years will be much of the same.

  5. AvatarJim Goerges

    Well, here we go again! You voted for Romney because you knew he was going to loose, you possibly were saving face by saying this, both for the benefit of democrats and republicans. Political posturing maybe.

    I think he lost because he did a poor job managing his campaign. 1. They didn’t get adds out to Florida and Ohio until after September. 2. Republicans didn’t run the dirty nasty adds that the Dems ran. 3. The campaign staff was didn’t act fast enough and didn’t have much passion. 4. Medicare plan was not “elderly friendly”. 5. Romney should have gotten nasty and fiesty faster, shouldn’t have come out swinging like the first campaign the first day. 6. He should have concentrated on Obama’s record, lack of leadership, mishandling of LIBYA. 7. He should have had a plan for young adults like you mentioned. 8. Need to use technology to appeal in real time to this group, the Dems do MUCH better using this technology, plus 1800 buildings and community support bases, and concentrate on the electoral geography, republicans need to use tactical political marketing management, get into the 21st Century and the young’ns will come into the group faster.

    Worst showing among the best financed candidate ever…however, 49% of Americans need to demand better, that I applaud you for in writing this article.

  6. AvatarJim Bradshaw

    Obama won, Romney lost!! Mitt the Twitt wasn’t so brilliant after all.
    Maybe the Republicans should move toward the middle!! DUH!!
    They declared their intent to obstruct Obama 2 years ago and followed that strategy to their own demise. Choke on it.

    Can’t we find the points we agree on and try to make goverment better, instead of clinging to our differences and fighting each other. Let’s try to eliminate the Tax on Sugar Imports or the stupid supports for ethanol production, but wait large corporations make mountains of money off these activities.

    To most of the turly Wealthy Republicans, why don’t you try a free market system sometime. So many large companies and Individuals suck more from the governement trough than a nation full of Welfare Queens ever could. Let’s get the Unions out of Government jobs and back into the private sector. But no, in the private sector you just move the jobs to some where else no matter the cost to the American Worker and the US economy.

    Remember to the 1% even the middle class is “lower class”.

  7. AvatarDAVID

    Dear Red State Residents:
    We’re ticked off at your Neanderthal attitudes and politics and we’ve decided we’re leaving.
    We in New York intend to form our own country and we’re taking the other Blue States with us. In case you aren’t aware that includes California, Hawaii, Oregon,
    Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and the rest of the
    We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation and especially to the people of the new country of The Enlightened States of America (E.S.A).
    To sum up briefly:
    You get Texas, Oklahoma and all the slave states.
    We get stem cell research and the best beaches.
    We get Andrew Cuomo and Elizabeth Warren. You get Bobby Jindal and Todd Akin .
    We get the Statue of Liberty. You get OpryLand and Nascar.
    We get Apple, Google, Intel and Microsoft. You get WorldCom and Fox News.
    We get Harvard Princeton, Penn, Haverford, Colgate, Yale. You get Ole’ Miss.
    We get 85 percent of America’s venture capital and entrepreneurs.
    You get Alabama.
    We get two-thirds of the tax revenue. You get to make the red states pay their fair share.
    Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22 percent lower than the Christian Coalition’s, we get a bunch of happy families. You get a bunch of single moms.
    With the Blue States in hand we will have firm control of 80% of the country’s fresh water, more than 90% of the pineapple and lettuce, 92% of the nation’s fresh fruit, *95% of America’s quality wines* (you can serve French wines at state dinners) 90% of all cheese, 90 percent of the high tech industry, most of the US low sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy and Seven Sister schools plus Harvard,
    Yale, Stanford, Cal Tech and MIT.
    With the Red States you will have to cope with 88% of all obese Americans and their projected health care costs, 92% of all US mosquitoes, nearly
    100% of the tornadoes, 90% of the hurricanes, 99% of all Southern Baptists,
    virtually 100% of all televangelists, Rush Limbaugh, Bob Jones University,
    Clemson and the University of Georgia.
    We get Hollywood and Yosemite, thank you.

    35% of you STILL believe Obama is a Muslim, 38% of you believe Jonah was actually swallowed by a whale, 62% believe life is sacred unless we’re discussing the death penalty or gun laws, 44% say that evolution is only a theory, 53% that Saddam was
    involved in 9/11 and 61% of you crazies believe you are people with higher morals then we lefties.
    We’re taking the good weed too. You can have that crap they grow in Mexico.


    Citizen of the Enlightened States of America
    p.s. see our side can be stupid too, but at least it’s a thoughtful kind of stupid.

  8. AvatarC Spooner

    Mr Graff,

    I find your article quite telling.

    Perhaps your proposed courting of specific groups would have yielded the political fruit desired, but at what cost? To compromise your principals for political gain may solve the short term problem of being elected but your proposed solutions certainly do not make us a stronger, more united, or wealthier nation.

    Your generation of leadership has sold out America for political gain, just as you recommend above. Now we have 16 trillion dollars worth of debt to repay, inadequately funded entitlement programs and a raging class warfare problem that will continue to plaque all Americans for years to come.

    No doubt Mitt could have done a better job running his campaign but to recommend we up the ante on the Obama class warfare is short sighted and appalling proposal.

  9. AvatarDean

    Just bought some Gold. Hope I lose my ass on that overpriced investment. If I do not I see losing my USA.

  10. AvatarMongo of Warsaw

    The conservatives have ran this country into the ground. We’ve cut taxes to the point our schools, roads, bridges, national parks and social programs have fallen apart. The conservative have also subjugated Christianity to serve their whims and used religion as a way to scare ignorant and somewhat voter into making liberals seem evil. Their solutions are mean, heartless and their motives are founded in greed. It is a shame and a sham. They have taken advantage of apathy and laziness and pandered to people who want others to do their thinking for them. Apathy is not a virtue..
    More factoids…

    Love at first trade

    The stock market loves President Barack Obama. Equities benchmarks have risen more under Obama than during the first terms of Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush or Bill Clinton. And chances are that the industries that did well in Obama’s first term will keep on rolling in his second. Where to put your money now that Obama has won.


  11. AvatarDavid

    In answer to Darrel, I would ask what there was about the last four years that requires blame? 32 straight months of job growth, death of Bin Laden, Obamacare, a 13,000 stock market, equal pay for women, a vibrant auto industry…he ran on these accomplishments and a majority of Americans agreed with him. No, I don’t think this president ever blamed anyone for the last four years. He took credit for them and he won. Pretty impressive that not only did he win but the democratic majority in the senate increased and the republican majority in the house shrunk. You guys hate way too much. It’s better to simply disagree without hating.

  12. AvatarKeith

    It’s over. One guy lost, the other one won. We have a President and a Congress. It’s still America. It’s time to stop being adversaries and to become Americans. Remember that?
    No matter what side you started on, we’re now in this together. It’s imperative that we stop the tantrums, man up and get the job done. Like we used to.
    I’m not a Liberal. I’m not a Conservative. I’m an American.


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