We know Mitt Romney in Massachusetts. We know that the last thing he wants national voters to see is his record as Governor of the Bay State. Romney's term as occupant of "the Corner Office" was marred by a constant neglect of the Commonwealth and the citizens of Massachusetts.
How bad was it? Follow me over the fold and see just how Mittens handled the aftermath of the terrible floods in MA in 2006. It truly was a case of a Governor who had willfully abandoned the voters of his State so that he could concentrate on his own agenda. It truly is a case of an Epic Fail.
Mother's Day weekend in May 2006 saw an astonishing amount of rain fall on the New England area. Wikipedia has an accurate and succinct picture of what happened in northern MA that soggy spring:
Numerous rivers overflowed in northeastern Massachusetts, and urban flooding also occurred. Thousands of people were evacuated and water was reported to be up to the rooftops of several homes. Several rivers, including the Merrimack and Charles rivers, threatened several communities. The Merrimack in Lowell was expected to reach more than 8 feet (2.4 m) above flood stage combined with 15 inches (380 mm) of rain.
The flooding also led to drowned waste water treatment plants, which overwhelmed sewage systems. Burst pipes in Haverhill dumped 35 million gallons (132,000 m³) of waste a day into the Merrimack River. In addition, the flooding at another regional treatment plant in Lawrence was also very close to shutting down the power there, which would have sent sewage into the Merrimack at a rate of 115 million gallons (435,000 m³) a day. For only the third time in a 150 year history, Lowell dropped its flood-controlling Francis Gate. Also, most notably in downtown Peabody, people could even be seen sailing in boats atop flooded areas.
So what did Mitt Romney do to support the people of Massachusetts during this emergency? Well, he did go on Good Morning America and joke about how bad the flooding was and how MA residents were preparing arks, ala the biblical story of the Great Flood in Genesis. What he didn't do was help out.
Mittens was running for President. He needed to shore up his conservative bona-fides. He couldn't be seen using the levers of government to actually aid people. So, Mitt wished the small businesses and residents of Ma well and ignored their pleas for help.
After all, Mitt was running for President and he couldn't be seen using the government to help actual people. He didn't want to be seen as a moderate, bleeding-heart Governor. That wouldn't help his national tough-guy image at all.
How bad did it get? The following article from the right-wing (very right-wing, 2004 George W. Bush endorsing) newspaper The Lowell Sun shows what MA got from their "I'm a great manager" Governor"
No relief from Romney
The Lowell Sun,
We find it inconceivable that Gov. Mitt Romney claims the state can do nothing to help those residents still struggling to rebuild homes and businesses after the May flood.
Massachusetts is sitting on millions in unspent emergency funds from Hurricane Katrina and more than $1 billion in cash reserves, yet Romney has failed to even respond to the Lowell delegation's requests to discuss additional aid for victims.
The governor's spokesman -- since Romney can't be bothered to comment now that the photo opportunities have dried up even though some residents' basements haven't -- said the state will not consider spending its own money for flood victims until it's clear how much cash the federal government will give.
Again, this is not the supposedly liberal Boston Globe making this case. This is the conservative Lowell Sun which serves the conservative/moderate region of Northern Middlesex and Essex Counties in MA.
The Editorial continues:
It's been two months, governor. Many Massachusetts residents are still living in temporary housing or trying to rebuild destroyed basements and first floors, racking up credit-card debt and taking out home-equity loans.
What's wrong with fronting the money and having those loans repaid when, and if, federal agencies come through with more cash?
If ignoring the pleas of legislators and constituents is the way Romney's going to handle a crisis situation, why would anyone vote for him for president? How would he handle a national crisis, by flying in for photo ops and then hiding in his White House office?
There were many epic fails in the Romney occupation of Massachusetts. The Governor raised fees, neglected education and practiced crony hiring for State offices. But this one really shows Romney's true relationship to voters.