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Meh Romney
(Darren Hauck/Reuters)
Sometimes you really have to wonder about Mitt Romney's campaign strategery. At a time when the Obama campaign is turning on the spotlight on Mitt's jobs record as Massachusetts governor, the Romney camp is practically jumping up and down pointing to another of Romney's giant weak spots from Massachusetts by trying to blame Obama for rising college tuitions and student loan debt. It's just not the shrewdest strategy to go after your opponent for those things when your own record is one of:
[...] dramatically slashing public higher education funding and hiking fees during his one term. According to the Boston Globe, fees and tuition jumped 63 percent at Massachusetts’ once-stellar system of public higher education from 2003 to 2007, as Romney slashed state funding year after year, for a total of $140 million, or 14 percent, in four years. Not surprisingly, average student debt in Massachusetts jumped 25 percent while Romney was governor. Between 2001 and 2011, tuition and fees have more than doubled at the state’s community colleges, state university and UMass campuses, but the bulk of the added burden piled up under Romney.
Romney's record is, in other words, ripe for a more fact-based rendition of exactly the attacks he's making on Obama. It's also not an isolated blip in Romney's vision of the economy, as Joan Walsh explains:
Under Reagan, median wages for the working and middle classes began to stagnate and fall – but household debt began to rise. It was as if the GOP-unleashed private sector figured out how to make money lending families the money that they were no longer making in income. Republicans have the same approach to higher education: They slashed public funding, and then let their banker friends “help” students afford higher tuition by lending them the cash to pay for it.
There's no reason to expect Romney will stick to attacks on President Obama that are reasonable or based in fact. You'd think he'd stick to ones that weren't likely to bite him in the ass, but then, maybe his problem is he doesn't have many of those—in fact, even without an Obama campaign response, Romney's big "Obama raised tuition" video has already been pulled for a copyright violation and drawn an annoyed response ("Considering I am not a supporter of Mitt Romney, this is not exactly sitting well with me") from one of the students featured in the video talking about his debt.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:01 PM PDT.

Also republished by ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Massachusetts Kosmopolitans, Progressive Hippie, German American Friendship Group, and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  We also need to mention that student loan defaults (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slowbutsure, G2geek

    are being driven by for-profit diploma mills. Some of those CEOs make $30 million a year.

    Obama wanted to end student loans to for-profits, but he was beaten back by the Republicans and a good number of Democrats in the pockets of the for-profits.

    There are two kinds of people in this world. The kind who divide the world into two kinds of people, and the kind who don't.

    by upstate NY on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:07:38 PM PDT

    •  No; student loan defaults are driven (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      G2geek

      by a willingness of lenders to make loans they shouldn't.

      That in turn is driven by Federal law providing for non-dischargeability in bankruptcy.  Guess what?

      This was a bi-partisan abomination.

      (Yes, there are a bunch of for profit schools that are particularly sucky;  they are not the core of the problem though.)

      •  They are the core of the problem (0+ / 0-)

        defaults are at 65% at the for-profits, 5-7% at the non-profits.

        Most loans are subsidizied by the federal gov't and come directly from the gov't.

        I'm against dischargeability in bankruptcy for obvious reasons.

        There are two kinds of people in this world. The kind who divide the world into two kinds of people, and the kind who don't.

        by upstate NY on Wed May 30, 2012 at 06:09:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Maybe a definitional issue- (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sethtriggs

          Is the "problem" student loan defaults, or is the problem the distribution of the defaults?

          -- We are just regular people informed on issues

          by mike101 on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:22:24 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  asdf (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          joynow, sethtriggs

          "I'm against dischargeability in bankruptcy for obvious reasons."
          I am guessing you have never experienced significant student debt or bankruptcy.

          I have been permanently disabled since 1998, and still have my advanced cancer-a cancer that has no known cause. To me, it is criminal that I pay private insurers, doctors and public hospitals more than 20% of the combined earnings of myself and my husband, and have paid that much for SEVENTEEN years. We have no savings, our 750 Sq. ft. house is mortgaged for the next 28 years, and our car is 10 years old.

          My student loan payments have been deferred since 2003 (my illness is terminal, even if it is currently stable). Thank god there are SOME provisions for inability to pay, but what is the point of not discharging the debt? Even if I were to miraculously recover and overcome 11 years of being out of the labor force, would society be served well by the further impoverishment of my husband? Wouldn't it be better served if I could pay HIM back and he were able to have a retirement at age 67?

  •  I'm trying to get this straight (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Supavash

    Obama is not responsible for State or private tuition costs and he has tried to increase Pell Grants and proposed a plan for reducing college tuition.  So Romney thinks Etch-A-Sketch works on the interwebz?

    I never thought anyone could have a worse team than McCain (see, e.g. Palin, Sarah) but Romney seems to have bought a doozy.

    Vi er alle norske " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:08:42 PM PDT

    •  I don't get this either... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sethtriggs

      Didn't an amendment to ACA get rid of the bankster middle-men to free up more $ for Pell grants?

      And the President and Dems have been fighting to keep the interest rate at 6%, right?

      When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 08:43:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Romney's campaign has adopted the Joseph Goebbels (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Supavash

    plan for Governance.

    Notice: This Comment © 2012 ROGNM

    by ROGNM on Wed May 30, 2012 at 02:24:07 PM PDT

  •  George Costanza method (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vcmvo2, msmacgyver, Matt Z

    Whatever Obama does do the opposite

    Doctor Mitt Romney Brain Sturgeon-The Operation was a success but the patient died, where's my fee?

    by JML9999 on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:04:06 PM PDT

  •  It's the standard Rove technique (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    msmacgyver, joynow, sethtriggs, Matt Z

    Preemptively attack your opponent on exactly the topics where you are vulnerable.  That creates a situation that the media will instinctively turn the issue into "he said, she said" and "they all do it", and your former advantage is off the boards before you can even use it.

    The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike from sleeping under bridges. ~ Anatole France

    by ActivistGuy on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:07:42 PM PDT

    •  Thanks! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sethtriggs, Matt Z, ActivistGuy

      I've always had a hard time understanding this up-is-down GOPer strategery...

      That creates a situation that the media will instinctively turn the issue into "he said, she said" and "they all do it", and your former advantage is off the boards before you can even use it.

      When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 08:45:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  projection junction (0+ / 0-)

    whats your function
    Its nothing new when it comes to the Republican party.
    Take all the negatives that your guilty of and heap them on your opponent.

  •  63% (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vcmvo2, msmacgyver, sethtriggs, Matt Z

    college tuition raised under Governor Romney

    US unemployment crisis is a GOP production concentrated in red states, TX, OH, WI, ID, MI and FL where GOP governors have spread the pain. If not for public sector layoffs the national unemployment rate would be at roughly 7 % - Joan Walsh

    by anyname on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:10:07 PM PDT

  •  Romney's campaign strategy is brilliant (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mike101, msmacgyver, sethtriggs

    He's all over the map intentionally to get people all confused.  The more confused they are, the more likely they'll tune out all the details.  People here can talk details and facts until they turn blue, but Romney has successfully politicized facts.  Once you politicize facts, there is no rational convincing.  

  •  Who the heck is helming this campaign? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    msmacgyver, sethtriggs, Matt Z

    Some rich donor's 17-year-old kid?

    Freedom has two enemies: Those who want to control everyone around them...and those who feel no need to control themselves.

    by Sirenus on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:20:39 PM PDT

  •  Romney Has No Such Record Does He? By That I Mean (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethtriggs

    one that most voters know or could come to know through some unspecified process or infrastructure?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:29:11 PM PDT

  •  may i just say it... please? (5+ / 0-)

    mitt romney is a lying sack of dog shit!

    i'm sick to death of his lies lies lies and more lies!!!!

    when is the media going to start calling him out????

    thank the universe for people like rachel and lawrence and ej
    and the front pagers like you, laura, who keep shedding light
    on the romney lies!

    i really hate the politics in our country right now
    toxic stew headed down a dangerous path.

    Toleration is the greatest gift of the mind; it requires the same effort of the brain that it takes to balance oneself on a bicycle. -Helen Keller

    by ridemybike on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 07:32:36 PM PDT

    •  I'm also exhausted listening to/watching (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow, sethtriggs, Matt Z, ridemybike

      Romney lie.  I am getting tuned into his body language, though, which is beginning to be entertaining.

      Most people who contemplate lying show the mental adjustment they have to make, either with their eyes or some other "tell".  Romney, on the other hand, is so used to lying that the only body language which is evident to me is a sort of dance he does.  I can't describe it accurately, but all of his "tells" are below the waist.

      When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 08:50:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  He's Throwing Mud Against the Wall.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethtriggs

    to see what sticks.  He just gave Obama an "F" on foreign policy.  Mitt has NO foreign policy experience unless you count the years he lived in a mansion in France as part of his Mormon mission.  He even had a French chef as a student.  Mitt also speaks fluent French.

    He should get along famously w/ Sarkozy's replacement.  

  •  Mitt Romney Has A Solyndra, Per Boston Herald. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethtriggs

    Called Konarka.

    cheerleaders need not apply.

    by kravitz on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 08:16:50 PM PDT

  •  Romney has pulled a page from his book at Amazon (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joynow, sethtriggs

    I saw something from the book on The Rude Pundit (pages 16 and 18), and when I checked it at Amazon, page 18 is gone now. Mitt must have thought it was damaging.

    http://rudepundit.blogspot.com/...

  •  Reality-based campaigning (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethtriggs, Matt Z

    ..is so pre - Citizens United.

    Propaganda is the name of the game now. Tell a lie often enough, inundate the airwaves with it, have FOX and "talkers" on radio repeat it and discuss the merits of the lie statement and all that's missing is the preacher-man repeating it on Sunday from behind the pulpit.

    Oh wait. That's included too.

    When The US tries to export our form of "democracy" and they laugh and say "no thanks" - Something's wrong

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 11:06:03 PM PDT

  •  Romney strategy: (0+ / 0-)

    Identify your own most vulnerable points and then relentlessly attack your political enemy for the same problem, regardless of "facts". (What is a fact?) It works pretty well in a media environment where all the journalists are trained to use balance in reporting election issues.

  •  Rmoney must be receiving advice (0+ / 0-)

    from "behind the curtain".  The wizard Rove at work in the shadows again?

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