Friday, August 03, 2012

EDITORIAL >> Free advice to Romney

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney doesn’t have a subscription to The Leader, but maybe a supporter will get this to him in time.

This is an open letter to Mitt Romney.

Dear Mitt:

I understand you want to become president of the United States. You have a good chance, especially if you follow the advice offered here.

First, you have to understand where you are on the political spectrum. It’s true that you are a Republican and conservative on many issues, but you are perceived as just right of the middle, and in politics, perception is reality.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with that, but you need to understand that is where you are, and you will garner the moderate or centrist Republican vote and even a lot of the Democratic vote, but any voters more than an arm’s reach to your right — the hardcore conservatives — are beyond your fingertips at the moment, and those to the left of you won’t be voting for you anyway, so focus on securing all those on the right.

Which brings us to the second point: You will get the entire right side of the spectrum if you make a sincere and proper vice presidential pick.

Your pick needs to be perceived as a conservative — someone to the right of you — and if it is a woman or a minority, all the better. Condoleezza Rice, for example. But the key is conservative.

Who exactly? It’s up to you.

But pulling a senator or representative out of Congress could leave you one short of an important legislative vote. A choice like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie would look popular initially, but he sits in the space on the spectrum as you do. Two people from the same part of the political spectrum may have been the ticket decades ago, but not now.

Also don’t look at grabbing someone like Sen. Rob Portman just to make sure a certain state (like Ohio) will vote Republican. Clinton picked Gore and it did get him Tennessee, just barely, and that was all. Clinton had to do the rest all on his own.

You have a lot going for you, but, sorry to say, you don’t have the gravitas to pull off a one-man show. That’s why your VP pick is the key. Make it a conservative to fire up the base. Then you take care of the middle (you’re already there), and the next letter addressed to you will begin “Dear Mr. President.”

Will you heed this important advice? No one will know until you announce your running mate.

Then everyone will know that you either listened or you need to buy a subscription to The Leader to make sure you get good advice in time. —Rick Kron