BELMONT, MA - MARCH 06:  Republican presidenti...

Mitt Romney

Willard “Mitt” Romney came to be in Massachusetts in the late 70’s as an adviser to an intermediate level president in the LDS (Mormon) Church. Eventually he lead the Boston Stake, which included some 4000 members of the LDS. In the early 90’s he decided to give a try at politics, having been successful at business -with just a tiny bit of help from an extremely large sum of wealth left to him by his father. He changed his political affiliation from Independent in 1994 to Republican to run against Democrat Ted Kennedy, who while normally was extremely popular had recently endured some family embarrassment stemming from a court case.  In fact, Romney had voted in the Democratic Presidential Primary in 1992, the election year that would eventually see Bill Clinton become president. So in a two year span he went from voting for a Democrat in a Presidential Primary to registering as a Republican to run against a Kennedy. So strong were his convictions in his personal beliefs he told his brother, “I never want to run for something again unless I can win.”   Because front-runners always stick with their convictions.

While head of the Salt Lake City Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics, Mr. Romney aggressively lobbied Congress for federal contribution of somewhere between $400 million and $600 million, plus an additional 1 billion dollars in infrastructure projects. While some have said this money was needed to “save” the Olympic Winter Games that year as it was having fiscal trouble, other reports have said the much of the funding was already set and Romney played the hero simply to propel himself into the public spotlight as a savior.  Regardless of his motives, I find it funny that a man who so aggressively asked for over a billion dollars of federal money in 2002 now wants to run the government under the guise of limiting federal spending and allowing private business to function without federal oversight. Every filthy rich business man wants government’s nose out of their business, but many seem to want government’s wallet in their business.

In 2002 Mitt’s “home” state of Massachusetts had an unpopular Republican governor plagued by personal scandals, and even those in the White House wanted the incumbent gone and Mitt Romney in.  After a bit of a see-saw campaign, Romney won the vote 50%-45% over State Treasurer Shannon O’Brien, and although he claims that he immediately faced a deficit of $3 billion, he conveniently overlooks the fact that the state was getting $1.3 billion from capital gains and an additional $500 million in federal grants. Once again, the current small-government Mitt used half a billion federal dollars in 2002/2003 to help fix problems in his state, and then act like he saved the day.  Things weren’t all bad for Massachusetts when Mitt was governor, Ted Kennedy’s dream of near-universal health care came true when in 2006 Romney signed into law “Romneycare.” One of the centerpieces of this law was the individual mandate – that all residents must have health insurance if financially able or face escalating tax increases. He was so proud of the individual mandate that he wrote in his book that it should be the centerpiece of national health care.  Yet on the campaign trail this year he’s called Obamacare’s mandate a tax, and has said the first thing he would do as President is grant waivers to ignore it.

I do not begrudge Mr. Romney his money, all current indications are that he made it legally, but we have a man who has continually changed his political stance to expedite his political career, and that’s simply not the person I want leading the country, despite all of the shortcomings of Barrack Obama. Please also note that what I wrote about here are just a few of the things Mitt has flip-flopped on, watch the last link in this article – it’s a very well-crafted video that pretty clearly shows – with context – how many issues Romney has done a 180 on.

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Zarberg is a member of The Political Observers, a sub-group of our writers who are devoted to topics that are political in nature. Zarberg provides a liberal viewpoint in his articles.

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