This is a letter to all the readers about Mitt Romney.
Usually I use this space in the paper for a column about whatever’s been in the news recently, something that’s annoying, inspiring or otherwise interesting information. But over the past couple weeks, having heard a radio host denounce and insult a Georgetown law student, and having had equally ignorant people tell me with a straight face that Rick Santorum wants to personally take away their condoms, I’m going to use this platform for something else: Advice for Mitt Romney. People aren’t scared of him, he doesn’t offend a large swath of people, and he needs to win this nomination already, damnit. Also, he won’t return my calls or texts, so I’m trying an open letter to our former governor instead. Here it goes.
I’m not your number one fan. I didn’t vote for you last week and I’m not sure I will in the fall. But you seem like a good guy, and if you’re going to be going around the country telling people you’re the former Gov. of Massachusetts, my home, then we’ve got to get a few things straight.
I really do think you’re a decent guy deep down. You’re rich and stuff, but I don’t think that’s the problem. The press says you’re a little out of touch; maybe, but they say that about everyone – absolutely everyone. So ignore them. Ignore the press. Stop catering to them and making sure every little thing you do is controlled. It makes you look robotic and people are yearning for someone real. It’s time to reinvent yourself; just a little – no spray-on tans or gold crosses around your neck. But image is key. A suggestion: Accentuate your strengths. Let’s list them.
First, you’re a boss – literally. You started a company with a few business partners and it grew into something huge. You made it on your own and you’re an American success story. Talk about business models more; it’s where you live and it shows. If you can lay out a competent plan for reviving this economy, you’ll be a little more popular. Don’t try to outdo Santorum or Newt Gingrich with language that qualifies you for a serious psych evaluation; people can tell it’s not you, and it just isn’t becoming of a serious presidential character. Don’t outwit them, out-Mitt them. Just be you. Talk about money and business and getting the United States back on track. But keep reading, this is just step one. You need a cohesive plan.
Second, awkwardness is a plus. In front of crowds, you can be sort of, well, indelicate. “My friends own NASCAR”? Come on, Mitt, what was that all about? Remember that other thing you said? You know, when you said, “Corporations are people, too.” We get what you meant, but try to be a little more tactful for crying out loud.
But I said awkwardness can be a plus, and it can, so let’s work with this. People like the self-deprecating stuff, so try to go in that direction. And let’s face it: Most of America wouldn’t be one-tenth as good at public speaking as you are. So try not to say anything too stupid and you’ll be set.
People aren’t trusting of politicians who are too polished, either, and they tend to like leaders who speak genuinely. Remember, George W. Bush was elected president of this land twice, and a silver tongue he had not.
Third, you’re rich. We come from different backgrounds, but that’s never stopped anyone. Just look at “Love Story” and all those other movies about people from different worlds. I know you’re probably reading this over your Ovaltine and thinking, “How is being rich a plus in a presidential election? Everyone perceives me as an evil CEO,” but that’s misguided, Mitt. The fact that you’re rich just proves you’re successful – not a bad thing to have in a president. And you’re what they call “new money.” Your dad didn’t even finish college, he was another self-made man, and while he gave you some help in life he seems to have taught you well. After all, you’ve got a net worth over $200 million, which makes you pretty comfortable. And let’s look at the list of rich presidents: George Washington, Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy – not a bad crowd, really. But it’s rude to talk about money, so let’s move on.
And look, so far, you’re winning. You’ve got double the number of delegates as anyone else in the Republican race. Send the rest of those clowns back home and tell them you’ve got this. Seriously. It’s come time for them to drop out and accept that you’re headed for the nomination. To not do so would just be idiotic, and this is why I have little faith in a couple other Republican candidates that are still standing.
So you need to lay down the law, Mitt, and I know that’s probably not your thing. But let’s make it more your style – give a Power Point presentation on why they should drop out. You’re a shrewd businessman, and I think you could do it.
Lastly, you actually have a shot at beating President Barack Obama. That rules everyone else out. If you need any more advice, start answering my texts, Mitt, before we’ve got Santorum vs. Obama vs. Donald Trump vs. Snooki in a four-way matchup. Before it’s really too late.
Jonathon Carvalho is a Collegian columnist. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.