Mitt Romney tried and failed again to act like an 'average guy' yesterday, and had yet another interesting exchange with reporters.
Mitt Romney is heading home after a disastrous overseas tour.
The presumptive GOP presidential nominee’s plane left Poland this afternoon and is headed for Boston, concluding a seven-day gaffe-prone foreign visit.
Romney had hoped the tour would showcase his diplomatic talents and readiness as a leader.
Instead, he drew massive attention for insulting Britain over its preparation for the London Olympics and angered Palestinians during his visit to Israel.
And the strain was showing on the trip's final day in Poland.
Romney's travelling press secretary Rick Gorka told reporters today to "shove it" and "kiss my ass" when asked why Romney had taken just three questions from American reporters.
Gorka subsequently called a pair of reporters to apologize, saying he lost his cool.
"It was inappropriate," Gorka said.
Romney had ignored shouted questions from reporters about his comments attributing Israel's strong economy to Jewish culture, with no mention of Israel's harsh restrictions on the Palestinians. Palestinian officials accused Romney of racism.
And who's to blame for this mess?
Before leaving Poland, Romney downplayed his perceived missteps and blamed the media in an interview with Fox News. He said reporters are more interested in "finding something to write" than in reporting on the economy and national security threats.
But as he returns to the U.S. 98 days before the general election, speculation is already turning toward Romney's choice of a running mate.
His campaign released a statement suggesting the announcement would come "soon," although experts doubt it will come before the Olympics end on Aug. 12.
One word perfectly summarizes Mitt Romney's evasions about his taxes, refusal to clarify which cuts he plans to make to shrink the government, and how long he was involved with Bain.
Dr. Michael Eric Dyson reveals that one word and his definition from our exclusive Dyson-ary.
At a town hall on Tuesday Mitt Romney complained about the lamestream media, saying that it's mostly in the tank for the President. He went on to sing the praises of the new network of right wing media that allows him to get his message out, largely unchallenged. (Fox News, Newsmax, Drudge, etc)
Today, after three days worth of his Bain SEC disaster, Romney has relented and will sit down for interviews with NBC, ABC, and CBS. Luckily, Romney's pals at the Drudge Report floated the bogus Condi Rice story so that will take up much of the oxygen in the interviews. Still, pretty remarkable how Romney spent the beginning of the week trashing traditional media outlets and now he's running to them to try and save himself.
Brian Ach /AP Images for BACARDI
Attention "nail ladies" and babysitters: You just don't understand!
On the day before President Obama stood up for an extension of the middle class tax cut and the expiration of tax cuts for the wealthy, Mitt Romney was holding three fundraisers in the Hamptons on Long Island, New York.
At one point, country's ultra-rich, who drove their Bentleys, Porsches and Mercedes-Benzes to the events, had to sit idle in a line of 30 cars long.
"Is there a V.I.P. entrance?” one woman shouted. "We are V.I.P."
With no such entrance available, they were forced to sit waiting to get in, providing the perfect opportunity to pass the time talking to waiting journalists.
That's when anonymous female passenger in a Range Rover with East Hampton beach permits complained to the Los Angeles Times that "nobody understands why Obama is hurting them."
"We've got the message," she said. "But my college kid, the baby sitters, the nails ladies -- everybody who's got the right to vote -- they don't understand what's going on. I just think if you're lower income -- one, you're not as educated, two, they don't understand how it works, they don't understand how the systems work, they don't understand the impact."
Where is the V.I.P. entrance, indeed.
All five of Mitt Romney's sons appeared on Conan O'Brien's show last Wednesday.
Tagg, Matt, Josh, Ben and Craig donned name tags and regaled Conan with what a prankster the Mittster really is.
“I remember a story from when he was in high school — I guess it was a little after high school," Tagg Romney, the eldest son, said. "His friend was getting married. And he found his way into the hotel room ahead of time, and the groom’s outfit was there. He took some pink nail polish and wrote on the first shoe, ‘H-E,’ on the sole, and on the next one, ‘L-P.’ And no one noticed it. It was a Catholic wedding, and when he knelt down to be blessed by the father, the word ‘HELP’ appeared."
Policy questions were not brought and Conan was fairly gentle with the sons. He didn't call the presumptive GOP presidential nominee a flip-flopper, or bring up his wife's several Cadillacs.
But Conan couldn't help poke fun of Mitt Romney's wealth in the "True or False"
Conan asked the boys if Mitt Romney went to college "on a croquet scholarship" (No response on that one.) and if their father's hair "is chisled out of imported African mahogany."
"That is true," Tagg said.
Mitt Romney's been trying to avoid answering every controversial issue possible lately, apparently hoping to run out the clock on the November election, still four-plus months away.
But he still can't hide how out of touch he is.
Case in point: During stop yesterday at Cornwall Iron Furnace in Cornwall, Pennsylvania, on a small-town bus tour of six swing states, Romney declared “I am going to win Pennsylvania” this November.
That was somewhat bizarre given that President Barack Obama leads Romney by eight points (48-40 percent) in RealClearPolitics' average of polls.
Romney then waded into what has been a tense debate among Pennsylvanians for years: Wawa or Sheetz? The question of which Pennsylvania-based convenience store/sandwich chain is better became so awkward, that Romney apologized at one point.
But what got Romney really, really excited was a computer at Wawa (or as he called it, "WaWas") that allows customers to type in what they want on a sandwich, as opposed to ordering it through a human cashier.
"You press a little touchtone [editor's note: touchtone?] key pad… You touch this, touch this, touch this, go pay the cashier, and there's your sandwich," Romney said. "It's amazing!"
Watch the video:
The Guardian's Ana Marie Cox, Democratic strategist Julian Epstein and The Hill's Karen Finney dig into the Romney bus tour, including his amazement at a WaWa touch screen and whether one of the men accompanying him could be his pick for vice president.
Remember when Bush 41 was mesmerized by a common grocery store checkout scanner in 1992, twelve years after they were introduced?
So what was Romney most excited about, the advanced technology or the fact that the owner doesn't need to pay somebody to take sandwich orders?
Let us know what you think!
Mitt Romney today released his first general-election TV commercial, promising to approve the Keystone Pipeline, repeal the Affordable Care Act (which was based on Governor Romney's health care law in Massachusetts) and introduce tax cuts and on the FIRST DAY of his presidency.
So, this is the top priorities of the Romney administration on the very first day:
You've gotta admit, Romney is stunningly open about his desire to help the very wealthy at the expense of the working class.
The good news is even if Romney wins, he can't do any of this without congressional approval. For example, a full repeal of health care would require votes from Republican majorities in both the House and Senate or Democratic support for repeal.
Republicans currently control the House and have voted to repeal the law. But Democrats control the Senate, and the balance of power on Capitol Hill would have to shift in order to make Romney's pledge a reality.
Congress also would have to act on taxes as the president cannot set tax rates.
Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart, Mother Jones David Corn and MSNBC analyst Michael Steele debate what a new report on a young Mitt Romney, hazing a possibly homosexual student with shears, might tell us about the man today.
On the day after President Obama became the first sitting president to endorse same sex marriage, Mitt Romney is facing a blistering portrayal as an anti-gay prep school bully.
A story published today by The Washington Post recounted an incident at the prestigious Cranbrook School in Michigan when Romney orchestrated a hazing against a presumed homosexual student.
The student, John Lauber, was tackled and pinned to the ground in 1965 by a group of students led by Romney, who wanted to cut the student's bleached-blond hair (Romney would’ve been 17-18 years old at the time).
Five of Romney’s fellow students separately and independently recalled the incident the same way, including Romney's close friend Matthew Friedemann.
"Friedemann entered Stevens Hall off the school’s collegiate quad to find Romney marching out of his own room ahead of a prep school posse shouting about their plan to cut Lauber’s hair,” the Post reported. “Friedemann followed them to a nearby room where they came upon Lauber, tackled him and pinned him to the ground. As Lauber, his eyes filling with tears, screamed for help, Romney repeatedly clipped his hair with a pair of scissors."
Thomas Buford, the wrestling champion who helped Romney restrain the boy, later apologized to Lauber, telling the Post "to this day it still troubles me."
Romney responded to the allegations this afternoon on Your World with Neil Cavuto on Fox News.
“I don’t recall the incident myself but I’ve seen the reports and not going argue with that,” Romney said. “There’s no question that I did some stupid things in high school and, obviously, if I hurt anyone by virtue of that I would be very sorry for it and apologize for it."
"I certainly don't believe that I thought the fellow was homosexual," Romney said of Lauber in a live radio interview with Fox News personality Brian Kilmeade. "That was the furthest thing from our minds back in the 1960s, so that was not the case."
But this is not the only incident. Gary Hummel, an English student who later came out as gay, says Romney would taunt him with "atta girl" when he spoke out in class.
Ed will have full coverage of this scandal tonight on The Ed Show at 8pET on MSNBC!
Mitt Romney changed his position on the auto bailout, with his advisor saying President Obama used Romney’s idea.
Now that Mitt Romney has all but wrapped up the GOP presidential nomination, its time to get back to some serious fundraising.
This morning, the Mittster went on the offense at a Manhattan fundraiser hosted by New York Jets owner (and good buddy) Woody Johnson. But like a good game, the event needed some solid opposition.
The faux football team, New York 99ers, huddled outside to form a "defensive line against the same failed Bush economic policies that sacked the middle class."
The 99ers insist Romney's economic playbook gives "millionaires, big oil companies and corporations that offshore American jobs trillions of dollars in new tax breaks."
The 99ers posed for photos at the Marriott Marquee Hotel in Times Square, wearing uniforms similar to the Jets, complete with "we are the 99 percent" brazened on the front their jerseys.