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Mitt Romney split screen image—Romney grimacing at Romney
Mitt Romney yesterday:
There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.
His campaign two hours later:
Governor Romney would of course support legislation aimed at providing greater protections for life.
So Mitt Romney went from "no legislation ... that would become part of my agenda" to "would of course support legislation" in the span of just two hours. Wow. At least when he was governor it took him two full years to flip-flop on his pro-choice pledge.

It really is saying something when you can look at the old Romney and say he was a model of consistency, right? As Bill Clinton said yesterday about this new Romney:

"I had a different reaction to that first debate than a lot of people did," Clinton told nearly 2,000 supporters at a campaign rally for Obama and other Democrats. "I thought, 'Wow, here's old moderate Mitt. Where ya been, boy?'"

Clinton compared Romney's performance in Denver to a sales job at the Boston private equity firm where the Republican presidential nominee made his personal fortune.

"It was like one of these Bain Capital deals, you know, where he's the closer," Clinton said. "So he shows up, doesn't really know much about the deal and says, 'Tell me what I'm supposed to say to close.' The problem with this deal is the deal was made by severe conservative Mitt," alluding to Romney's description of himself in February as having been a "severely conservative" governor in Massachusetts.

I'd be lying if I said I knew what Mitt Romney's true beliefs were. Hell, I don't even really know if he actually has any true beliefs other than the belief that he's justified in doing whatever it takes to get what he wants.

But what I do know is that it only took his campaign two hours to take back what he said. I do know that earlier in the campaign Mitt Romney wrote an op-ed in the National Review pledging to do "everything in my power" to curtail abortion rights, including supporting several pieces of legislation that he specifically identified. And I do know that when it came to picking a vice presidential candidate, he picked Paul Ryan, one of the most conservative Republicans in congress on issues of choice and reproductive freedom.

We may not know what Mitt Romney really believes, but we do know what he's said and done as a candidate and a politician. And we do know that he is that he is a captive of the conservative Republican base. They might cut him a little slack over the next month, but ultimately they're the boss—not the other way around. And the position he'd take as president would be the position that they demand.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:26 AM PDT.

Also republished by Pro Choice and Abortion.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The serial liar who is... (14+ / 0-)


    Change will not come if we wait for some other person or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

    by First Amendment on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:28:00 AM PDT

  •  Presidents Don't Legislate, Koch Brothers Do. (11+ / 0-)

    He'll be as moderate as the Kochs.

    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 Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:29:06 AM PDT

  •  Would you buy a used car from this man? (5+ / 0-)
  •  It's very simple (5+ / 0-)

    Whatever your opinions on any topic except one, you don't know what Romney believes, or what he will do.

    The one exception is his own taxes. He'll cut those, and sacrifice whatever else he must sacrifice to achieve that goal.

    Romney economics: Feed our seed corn to the fattest pigs and trust them to poop out jobs.

    by blue aardvark on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:30:23 AM PDT

  •  He was severely conservative before being against (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

    by LaurenMonica on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:33:01 AM PDT

  •  Romney's true beliefs are: (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Buckeye54, tb mare, Frank, fhcec

    "It's ok to lie in order to get what I want."
    "It's ok to cheat in order to get what I want."
    "It's ok to steal in order to get what I want."
    That's it.

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:33:45 AM PDT

  •  Romney's Campaign: Don't listen to the candidate (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SueDe, IndyScott, exterris, PipeUp

    because he doesn't represent the official stand of the campaign.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:34:21 AM PDT

    •  Exactly. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare

      Republicans:  Can he hold a pen and sign his name?  Then he's our guy!"

      Truer words were never spoken:

      ...ultimately they're the boss—not the other way around. And the position he'd take as president would be the position that they demand.
      A man with no principles of his own will accept those of anyone who grants him access to what he wants.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:49:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Memory blips (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's a lie if it is to his advantage, like the 716B lie, but this one sounds like a memory blip. More like Reagan, and we did eventually learn his diagnosis.

    Romney has done this before, where he answers a question as though there is NO working memory available. It's like a human 404.

    It could be lack of sleep or stress or just his personality, but it could also be something's wrong with the hardware.

    We can safely abandon the doctrine of the eighties, namely that the rich were not working because they had too little money, the poor because they had too much. JK Galbraith, 1991

    by Urban Owl on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:35:28 AM PDT

    •  Nah. It's a heap error traceable to the memory (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PipeUp, Urban Owl

      chip and the emotion chip both accessing the stack simultaneously.

      I can’t decide who’s cuter – the dead guy with the arrows in his chest, or the guy in the ditch with the seeping wound. -- Game of Thrones (Heard on Set)

      by prodigal on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:39:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ask Ann (0+ / 0-)
      Asked for her reaction about the Democratic charges of lying, Ann Romney told Martha MacCallum of Fox News, "I mean, lied about what? ... It's sort of like someone that's, you know, in the sandbox that lost the game and they're just going to kick sand in someone's face and say 'you liar.'

      She continued: "They lost ... so now they're going to say, we didn't like the game. It's to me, it's poor sportsmanship."

      "I can't do it by myself. No president can. Remember: Change doesn't happen from the top. It happens because of you." B Obama, 2008

      by nzanne on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:17:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  if we had a traditional media (7+ / 0-)

    worth one penny, THIS perpetual flip flopping/lying (including the debate) would be the post-debate story.  romney is one of the most inauthentic, unprincipled presidential candidate in modern history and the media simply gives him a pass every time.  in fact, they keep rewarding his lying (and paul ryan's) rather than calling it out.  there should be no interview with romney that does include his previous conflicting statements on issues and asks him which is what he truly believes and how can anyone trust him.

    •  Romney's lying and flip flopping is a tactic. (0+ / 0-)

      On Meet the Press or in a debate Romney says pre existing  conditions are covered, lots of people watching and listening, then his flacks say, 'correction no coverage of pre existing condition', nobody listening. No press coverage to deal with.

      Romney pays no penalty for lying and he helps cover the fucked up media's asses. Win, win. The press loves him for it.

      He's a liar, a job killing CEO, a tax avoider, a draft dodger, but it seems only we few know these facts or remember them.

  •  President Obama should ask that Romney's (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skillet, history first, IndyScott, PipeUp

    entire campaign be on stage with him at the next will make it a fair fight because then President Obama won't have to deal with as many different opinions as he does when facing only Mitt.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:36:32 AM PDT

  •  Aw. He mittspoke himself again. (nt) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle

    I can’t decide who’s cuter – the dead guy with the arrows in his chest, or the guy in the ditch with the seeping wound. -- Game of Thrones (Heard on Set)

    by prodigal on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:37:10 AM PDT

  •  And the Obama campaign's reaction is what? (0+ / 0-)
  •  I'd love to see a thematic set of ads... (7+ / 0-)

    All of them centered on Romney's own words (rather than those of pundits and analysts), in which Romney essentially debates himself, but all embedded within a single framing that ties all of those separate ads together, establishing a them.

    For example, you might run the ads so that Romney states one position, then you see a weather vane turning as a transition to a contradictory statement, and so on, back and forth like this. Then maybe end the ad with something like, "which way will the wind be blowing today?"

    Do this again and again in different ads on different topics--one on taxes, one on health care, one on abortion, etc. Use that same weather vane context to highlight the overall theme--that on issue after issues, Romney has flip-flopped back and forth, and he can't be trusted.

    •  I'd love to see a slightly different ad... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      An ad that is a blank gray screen with a thin black graph line moving across the screen and up. When it peaks, you hear Mitt say he has no agenda on abortion.

      The graph line moves down, at the bottom you hear Mitt say he will fight abortion while  the words "two hours later" are superimposed on the screen.

      Now the black line moves erratically backwards to the left edge while we hear Mitt is pro-choice and see the words, "ten years ago." The line is turning gray.

      The line shoots erratically across the screen to the right where we hear Mitt vow to overturn Roe v Wade and see the words "last month."

      The camera zooms out and we see the whole scribbled mess. Superimposed are the words, "Where will the line go next month?"

  •  Note Clinton calls Romney "boy." (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    In his good ol' Southern-speaking way -- so it CAN'T be offensive, right?


    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:40:01 AM PDT

  •  this is what people need to focus on (4+ / 0-)

    It's time for folks to get beyond Obama's performance in the debate and focus on the one way to turn it into, if not a positive, then less of a negative. Romney is trying to reinvent himself and his usual lying is getting even more ridiculous. In every speech and every interview, he's contradicting something he said weeks -- or minutes-- ago. This needs to become the drumbeat leading up to next week's debate. Someone put Sully in solitary confinement until after the election and stop all the bellyaching. After W lost the first debate in '04, the GOP didn't sit around crying, they started the "he sighed and lied" meme and won the election. Romney is a used car salesman. He can't be trusted on anything. This, or something like it, needs to be the new meme.

  •  Usually. . . (3+ / 0-)

    When someone assumes this many positions in such a short amount of time, they're working in the adult film industry.

    Let's get creative and give Romney an adult film name. Fire away.

    They've done studies, you know. 60% of the time, it works every time. -- Brian Fantana

    by IndyScott on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:44:11 AM PDT

  •  This is a great set up for debate #2-Clinton sets (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pointsoflight, tb mare

    the pick. Remind everyone that Romney was called "Multiple Choice Mitt". Remind people that Romney put forth either no substance, or worse, conflicting positions and outright lies. And, finally, plant the seed of doubt: "Will the real Mitt Romney please stand up"

    President Obama will drive these points home at the debate. And I have no doubt he will. He can't spend the majority of the time chancing after Romney's lies though.  

    What's the rhetorical device to combat the Gish Gallop?

    Warning: That light at the end of the tunnel just might be an oncoming train.

    by history first on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:44:40 AM PDT

  •  Romney may be schizophrenic.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exterris, PipeUp

    but he will always have each other.

    Carpe Diem! @leliorisen

    by Lelio Risen on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:45:10 AM PDT

  •  Well it's all quite simple (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exterris, PipeUp, word is bond

    He doesn't know any particular such legislation, but should an abortion restricting bill magically appear on his desk, of course he'd sign it!

    •  Yes, parse his weaselwords carefully: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Theodore J Pickle
      There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.
      "Legislation" excludes Supreme Court appointments.  Rmoney has repeatedly said the issue is in the hands of the courts.

      "I'm familiar with" excludes anything that he can say he wasn't familiar with, such as legislation proposed in the future.

      "that would become part of my agenda" excludes anything that isn't officially on his agenda, but that comes out of Congress' agenda and reaches his desk for signature.

      And that's why Rmoney's campaign isn't contradicting him when it states:

      Governor Romney would of course support legislation aimed at providing greater protections for life.
      See, if any legislation came along that he wasn't aware of or that wasn't on his agenda (and abortion issues aren't) then he would support it without contradicting himself.

      Let's remember, Rmoney has law and business degrees and spent years in the business of raising money from investors. That's a field where people choose their words carefully, in order to make required disclosures without making any misrepresentations.

      Every one of Rmoney's position statements has to be parsed in the same way, because we may think we're hearing something that he can later say isn't quite what he said.

      Some of those flip-flops aren't so much flip-flops as they are calculated sleaze.

  •  The one question (0+ / 0-)

    that throws everyone I know who supports him into a lather: name one position that you know for a fact that Romney actually believes, and has never flipped on, other than he wants to cut taxes for the wealthy and get rid of capital gains?

    "The human eye is a wonderful device. With a little effort, it can fail to see even the most glaring injustice." Richard K. Morgan

    by sceptical observer on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:46:37 AM PDT

  •  Multiple-Choice Mitt has given... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exterris, NYDan, PipeUp

    President Obama an opening the size of the Grand Canyon to exploit.

    Ronald Reagan famously asked at the 1980 debate, "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?"

    Can't Obama say something to the effect of, "Governor, can anyone believe what you said even four minutes ago?"

    Hell, perhaps he can even conflate the two premises:

    "You know, 32 years ago, candidate Ronald Reagan asked Americans if they were better off than they had been four years prior.

    "The answer then was no, they weren't.

    "In 2009, when I became president, our economy was hemorrhaging jobs at the rate of 800,000 a month, and many Americans thought we were heading to another Great Depression.

    "Today, we have added private-sector jobs 32 months in a row, and the unemployment rate is lower than when I assumed office.

    "Is the economy where any of us want it to be? No, not yet, but we're heading in the right direction, and we are better off than we were in 2008.

    "But, Governor Romney, in light of your most recent flip-flop, this time concerning a woman's right to choose, perhaps the appropriate question to ask you is, Can anyone believe what you said even four minutes ago, let alone four years ago?"

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:48:26 AM PDT

  •  multiple-choice mitt... (0+ / 0-)

    ...has only one core belief: he believes he deserves to be president.
    everything else is a means to that end.

    United we bargain. Divided we beg.

    by mellowjohn on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 06:48:44 AM PDT

  •  One of the worst aspects (or maybe best?) (0+ / 0-)

    of this is that Stephen Colbert won't be able to mock him with a "his position is the same on Wednesday as on Monday, no matter what happened on Tuesday" type attack.  

    Poor Mr. Colbert is going to have to come up with new material . . .

  •  Lying liars lying (0+ / 0-)

    and yet he gets a complete pass from most of he media?

    The interview with the totally useless Wolf Blitzer on CNN was like a Romney Infomercial.  He did everything but kiss his ass.

    but..Morning Joe beat him to it and he brought his sock puppet, Mika, along for the ride.

  •  If only Obama could talk like Clinton (0+ / 0-)

    We wouldn't be in this pickle.

  •  I know exactly what Mitt believes in: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exterris, PipeUp

    Creating a slave labor workforce that will keep corporate profits astronomically high, while maintaining a tax code that will keep his taxes practically non existent.

    Other than that and a professional courtesy nod to Mormonism, Mitt believes in nothing.

  •  I hate these diaries! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tb mare

    What good is it doing? We all know Mitt changes his views all the time and contradicts himself all the time.

    Apparently, our fixation on this element of his campaign is not bearing sufficient fruit.

    In the fight between Mitt v. Not-Mitt, Mitt always wins.

    Our president, an we ourselves, should get out of this Not-Mitt bubble and start preaching the President's accomplishments!

    Where is our "Morning in America" commercial?  Stock market hitting peaks, unemployment at lowest levels since the crash, economy showing clear signs of improvement.

    And I don't know a SINGLE PERSON who would honestly say they were better off four years ago except Osama Bin Laden.

    Why isn't this our, and the President's, message?

    "Don't bring that horse in here!" -- Cassandra

    by tc59 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:00:10 AM PDT

    •  It depends on what state you live in. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      If you're not living in one of the nine or so battleground states, you're probably not getting any message at all.

      I live in PA, and in the spring I saw a good number of "Morning in America" type commercials from President Obama.

      The one I liked best initially showed a jobs chart with a red arrow pointing to job losses. It was attention-grabbing, and I immediately assumed it was a GOP spot.

      But then, a blue line on the graph emerges, which points to positive job growth during Obama's term.

      The commercial then cuts to an image of Obama walking in slow motion in front of the White House, and the spot is wordless except for the obligatory, "I'm Barack Obama, and I approve this message."

      It was a very effective commercial, but I haven't seen a spot for Obama or Romney since some time in July, and I take that as being a good thing.

      How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

      by BenderRodriguez on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:06:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If the press will not call him a liar, Obama (0+ / 0-)

      can't get traction calling him a liar. Obama should start bragging up his accomplishments.

  •  And now it is our turn. Mittmentum is phony! nt. (0+ / 0-)
  •  I noted in a post yesterday that Mitt had a (0+ / 0-)

    Busier than usual public schedule this week and that he might make a mistake in an interview.  This one qualifies as a mistake.  It's tailor-made for an ad on tv/radio and if Candy Crowley does her job next week she'll get in one question about abortion rights.  I believe abortion rights has been asked at every townhall Presidential debate beginning in 1992.

    If properly exploited, this mistake could help stem some GOP enthusiasm or force him to commit to actual legislation that the House GOP has considered to restrict abortion rights.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:02:36 AM PDT

  •  Obama should go to Mitt's website and (0+ / 0-)

    memorize it. I assume it doesn't change as fast as the actual Mitt does.

    Then Obama can just recite back what it says on Mitt's own page. If Mitt argues, then the obvious answer is that Mitt has no idea what his own agenda is.

    •  I think he already has (0+ / 0-)

      because Obama had a detailed answer to Mitt's lie that his health "plan" would protect those with pre-existing conditions.  In an almost sotto voce (and not well reported) reply, Mitt says "so you read my plan."

  •  Just went to the site. ugh (0+ / 0-)

    Still a 20% across the board tax cut. No capital gains or dividends taxes on AGI's $200k or less......blah, blah, blah

    So maybe he has no idea how this stuff works.

  •  The Problem with Mitt! (0+ / 0-)

    Mitt wants to be all things to all People.  You listen to Mitt and he says that he supports everything that you support.  He's against everything that you are against.

    But. . . .

    If you keep listening, then you also notice that Mitt supports everything that you oppose.  And, Mitt opposes everything that you support.  Mitt is not your friend.  

    Mitt is your biggest opponent!  If more people listened to what Mitt really said, more people would understand that Mitt is really only for MITT!  And, Mitt will do anything and say anything to promote MITT!

    Dick Cheney said, "Pi$$ on 'em!" And, Ronald Reagan replied, "That's a Great Idea. Let's Call it 'Trickle Down Economics!"

    by NM Ray on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:17:11 AM PDT

  •  Romney is . . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    He says exactly whatever he thinks the audience wants to hear.

    Republicans are like alligators. All mouth and no ears.

    by Ohiodem1 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:21:44 AM PDT

  •  The campaign can really tie Mitt to the (0+ / 0-)

    Ryan-Akin bill to redefine rape in an ad.  Like the new ad regarding Mitt's debate lie about his tax plan, you can combine a lack of honesty and tie it to his true agenda, making him a liar and a hard right conservative.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 07:43:20 AM PDT

  •  The key phrase in his statement (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, word is bond

    is "familiar with"

    "There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda."

    You have to start putting the emphasis on the right words in his statements.

  •  It's Supreme Ct nominations... (0+ / 0-)

    ... not legislation that matter.

  •  How is it possible this empty suit (and head) (0+ / 0-)

    kicked Obama's ass in a debate last week?

  •  Multiple Choice Mitt, Owned by the Tea Party (0+ / 0-)

    Yes, Mitt is "multiple choice" on abortion and Obama should use this Ted Kennedy 1994 comment in the next debate. However, the fact that Mittens changed his stance so quickly to go anti-choice indicates his true position-- he is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Tea Party/social conservative gang. Within 4 min., really a nanosecond or less, he pivots back to his true base. "No more Mister Nice Guy" for POTUS. So if POTUS sounds aggressive in the next debates, and is called "uppity" by the rabid GOP bloggers, fine. Their racism will be shown for what it is. For more on the first debate and how to counter it, rethisad        

  •  Clinton is no paragon of consistency. DADT. (0+ / 0-)

    Romney: Wrong on GM. Wrong on bin Laden. Wrong on tax cuts. Wrong on austerity. Wrong on Medicare. Wrong on the 47%. Wrong for America.

    by SGWM on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 09:02:35 AM PDT

  •  We in Massachusetts know (0+ / 0-)

    This is exactly what he did when he ran for governor -- pretended to be pro-choice, but as soon as he was in office, he went severely conservative on us.

    I saw a piece a while back where some woman in Utah saw he was running as a pro-choice candidate, asked if she could help out, and was told by the campaign that it was a sham.  Unfortunately, don't have the link.

    Don't believe a word he says.  Take it from those of us from Massachusetts.

  •  last night's Frontline (0+ / 0-)

    made it pretty clear that Mitt only cares about what's on the shelves at Staples in order to close the deal and make a ton of money. His only value is making and concluding the deal that makes him and his clients the most money.

    So that approach comes to this in the political realm:

    I'd be lying if I said I knew what Mitt Romney's true beliefs were. Hell, I don't even really know if he actually has any true beliefs other than the belief that he's justified in doing whatever it takes to get what he wants.
    No true beliefs or values - just whatever it takes to get what he wants...

    "There's nothing serious about a plan that claims to reduce the deficit by spending a trillion dollars on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires." - President Obama

    by fhcec on Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 04:09:22 PM PDT

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