If you needed an indication of how much Mitt Romney's Home Videos: Poor People Suck Edition is shaking up the political landscape, you only needed to look at the reactions from the respective sides of the aisle on Capitol Hill today. The verdict; one side is jubilant, while the other is quite literally running away.
First, the jubilant side, as House Democrats are downright giddy over how Mitt's rogue mouth helps them:
It's going to help us in every swing district in America," House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) told reporters Wednesday, saying the Republican nominee's remark "shows disdain" for nearly half the country.And it's not just the leadership.
Numerous Democrats in closer races capitalized and sought to tie their Republican opponents to Romney's remarks and paint the GOP as contemptuous of the middle class. Even as the conservative base embraces Romney's comment, Republican candidates are keeping their distance.What Republican candidates, you might ask? Take a look at this:
Conservative firebrand Rep. Allen West (R-FL), who is vulnerable in Nov., took to Fox News the morning after the video was released to distance himself from Romney.Yes, you heard right. Allen West is running from Romney's remarks. Allen freaking West. If that doesn't give you an indication of how panicked the GOP is right now, I don't know what is.
"I think he was a little clumsy in doing this," he said Tuesday on Fox & Friends. "Mitt Romney probably could have better explained himself.
But for the best example of GOP panic on Capitol Hill, you have to go to the top. And this reaction from the GOP Senate leadership today is very telling:
Senate Republican leaders frled their weekly press conference after delivering prepared remarks Wednesday without taking a single question from reporters eagerly seeking their toughts on their presidential nominee's newly unearthed remarks dismissing nearly half of American voters."Nervous" is an understatement. More details:
Although some of the leadership members adressed journalists in separate huddles as they walked away, the unusual display is symptomatic of the party's nervousness over Romney's comments from a private fundraiser deriding the 47 percent of Americans who pay no federal income tax.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch MConnell (R-KY) excused himself in the middle of the availability. The rest - Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and Sens. John Thune (R-SD), Roy Blunt (R-MO) and John Barasso (R-WY) - made no mention of Romney or the race in their comments and instead lamented Senate dsyfunctionality and attacked Democratic policies.And Harry Reid couldn't resist getting in a good joke:
When reporters ran after them to ask about Romney's comments, they dodged.
Before the GOP press conference, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) taunted them over their candidate's troubles, telling reporters, "We have a long line of people who are running from Romney as if the Olympics are still on."You got that right, Harry. And judging by the ever-increasing number of Republicans running from Mitt's comments (welcome to the club, so to be ex-Senator Heller!), it's going to be a race the size of the Boston or New York Marathon by the time this is finished.