Mitt Romney seems to be laying the groundwork for a career as a stand-up comedian if this whole third-run-at-the-presidency thing doesn't work out. Speaking on an aircraft carrier—always a good spot for a Republican misstep—at the Republican National Committee winter meeting, Romney had this to say
"Under President Obama the rich have gotten richer, income inequality has gotten worse and there are more people in poverty in American than ever before."
Really, how did he say that with a straight face? Even by Mitt Romney's very generous standards for acceptable position changes, that is beyond acrobatic. That's alternate-universe stuff right there. This isn't the discovery of a new interest: Romney has always been a class warrior. It's just that now we're supposed to believe he's switched sides. Switched sides on the substantive issue and on how to address it, because, as Steve Benen reminds us, just three years ago, Romney's view was that it was beyond the pale for Obama to even talk publicly
about economic inequality:
I think it’s fine to talk about those things in quiet rooms and discussions about tax policy and the like. But the president has made it part of his campaign rally. Everywhere he goes we hear him talking about millionaires and billionaires and executives and Wall Street. It’s a very envy-oriented, attack-oriented approach and I think it will fail.
And now we've got Mitt Romney standing on a damn aircraft carrier railing about how the rich have gotten richer and income inequality has gotten worse (or, as he thinks in his heart of hearts, better). That's some quiet room right there.
But this is to be expected. Romney learned that inequality was a potent campaign issue, so he'd like to take advantage of it. Apparently, though, he hasn't looked in the mirror lately and considered whether he personally was a credible messenger against rising inequality. The man can change his positions in a heartbeat, but his lack of self-knowledge seems to be a lot harder to shift.