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Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:30 PM

Romney’s concession speech was not gracious

Pundits rush to praise the GOP candidate, but his behavior was petulant and sullen

BY MARY ELIZABETH WILLIAMS


It is a venerable tradition in American politics that no matter how ugly a bloodbath the campaign that preceded it may have been, on election night, the defeated candidate steps up and gives an elegant concession speech, thanking his supporters and pledging his loyalty to the victor. In return, the winning side politely vows to reach across the aisle, and lauds the loser’s “graciousness,” thereby assuring that no one can accuse the victorious side of anything resembling gloating.

Sure enough, after Mitt Romney’s five-minute parting words Tuesday evening – which actually came in the early hours of Wednesday morning – the governor was perfunctorily summed up in the punditsphere by the adjective of choice: The “Today” show declared that Romney’s speech was a “short but gracious” end to his six-year quest for the White House. Our own Salon staff called it a “gracious” speech. Even BuzzFeed called it “gracious,” pointing out its most “conciliatory and statesmanlike moments.” New York magazine, meanwhile, said that Romney “concedes with class.” Now, it may seem nitpicky to mention this while the door is still hitting the guy’s ass on his way out, but are you kidding me?

Take a journey back in time with me: The Associated Press, NBC and CNN called it for the incumbent president at around 11:15 p.m., filling exhausted voters on the still-battered East Coast with the naive hope that they could go to bed early. Instead, they, like the rest of the world, would have to wait nearly an hour and 45 minutes for the former governor to take the stage. Why? In part because even as Fox News analysts were admitting, “We’re actually quite comfortable with the call in Ohio,” and the Obama campaign had pulled the trigger on its record-breakingly forwarded victory tweet, the Romney campaign was still hanging on, perhaps, because as Daily Kos joked, they were waiting for their vote-flipping-machines results to kick in.

Romney was also no doubt dragging his heels because, as he confidently told journalists earlier Tuesday, “I just finished writing a victory speech. It’s about 1,118 words.” He added, just to drive the point home, “I’ve only written one speech at this point.” Barack Obama, meanwhile, aware of how tight the race was right up to the end, had told reporters, “You always have two speeches prepared because you can’t take anything for granted.” So tell me, who in this scenario seems like the gracious man, and who seems like a hollow tower of hubris? I’m asking for a friend. And that friend is AMERICA.

more:
http://www.salon.com/2012/11/07/romneys_concession_speech_was_not_gracious/

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Arrow 16 replies Author Time Post
Reply Romney’s concession speech was not gracious (Original post)
DonViejo Nov 2012 OP
Tigress DEM Nov 2012 #1
IfPalinisAnswerWatsQ Nov 2012 #2
BREMPRO Nov 2012 #3
SubgeniusHasSlack Nov 2012 #4
ProudProgressiveNow Nov 2012 #5
ready2go83 Nov 2012 #6
struggle4progress Nov 2012 #7
NYC Liberal Nov 2012 #8
Sinistrous Nov 2012 #9
gravity Nov 2012 #10
democrattotheend Nov 2012 #15
landolfi Nov 2012 #11
democrattotheend Nov 2012 #16
Vattel Nov 2012 #12
Maraya1969 Nov 2012 #13
secondwind Nov 2012 #14

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:31 PM

1. Close enough and more than I expected from him. nt

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:32 PM

2. By the standards of Rmoney, it was gracious

 

That's all the press were saying, I think. By his standards, it was. Which is a low bar.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:37 PM

3. "Hollow Tower of Hubris" ! That about sum up Romney...

Perfect description

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:37 PM

4. Just another self entitled upper class twit.

 

Graciousness is foreign to them.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:51 PM

5. He was heavily medicated....

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:53 PM

6. It was alright

It wasn't bad. I was very surprised. You could tell he did look disappointed but perhaps came to peace with it.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:57 PM

7. meh

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 01:58 PM

8. It was a standard concession speech. Nothing worthy of being either lauded or bashed.

It was forgettable like most concessions are.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 02:11 PM

9. The word I am using to describe that speech is ...

smarmy.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 02:33 PM

10. It was gracious enough

I will give Mitt Romney the benefit of the doubt for waiting over an hour before giving the concession speech. When Ohio was called for Obama, Romney was actually up in the results for that state. I don't blame them waiting and hoping for a small chance that it might be wrong.

I remember how hard it was to deal with Kerry losing to Bush in Ohio. Losing sucks and it might have taken a little bit of time for the results to sink in.

Maybe I am too forgiving, but I don't see any reason to criticize the handling of Romney's speech. Romney accepted defeat so lets put it behind and move forward now.

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Response to gravity (Reply #10)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 10:35 PM

15. I agree. I will not criticize him for waiting

If he had a reason to believe that Ohio had been called prematurely or that some of his voters may have faced disenfranchisement. I did not blame Kerry for holding out so I would be a hypocrite if I blamed Romney. There is too much pressure to concede quickly and declare a winner in one night and as a result, a lot of irregularities and problems with the voting system go unnoticed.

Yes, I understand that the chances that provisional ballots would yield a come from behind victory for a Republican are slim. However, on principle I want the people who cast provisional ballots to have their votes counted, and if a candidate has any reason to believe they might change the outcome they have the right not to concede. So like you, I give Romney the benefit of the doubt on that.

Once they called Colorado, I guess he saw the writing on the wall, since at that point Obama would have won even without Ohio.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 02:41 PM

11. I was at McCormick Place

and they showed Romney's concession speech live. Things were going OK for him, the crowd was gracious and attentive, until he started his BS about, "I so wish I had been able to fulfill your hopes to lead the country in a different direction". That's when the boos started and continued throughout that paragraph. Sounded like sour grapes to me: Why couldn't he just stick to "disappointed" and leave the rest out. But then, what did I expect from a self-absorbed sociopath? That's why it is such sweet victory to know this POS is going home to his car elevators and animal abuse.

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Response to landolfi (Reply #11)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 10:36 PM

16. In fairness, he was speaking to a room of disappointed supporters

So I felt like that part of the speech was targeted at them. Which is legit, but he should have had more addressed to the American people, urging people to support the president now that the voters have spoken. John McCain did a much better job of that in 2008. But I guess he had more time to mentally prepare for it...he knew he was going to lose. My understanding is that Romney and his staff did not necessary think they would win, but they did believe that they could win.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 04:11 PM

12. His speech was fine.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 09:59 PM

13. Unless I missed something Romney neved congradulated Obama. He mearly said he would "pray" for him.

I thought that was tacky. He might have said it in the beginning of the speech because I didn't listen to the whole thing.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Wed Nov 7, 2012, 10:03 PM

14. His wife looked like she had been crying heavily... She came on the podium, with her limp



left wrist, waved feebly for 2 seconds, and turned around quickly to escape... Mitt steered her back gently to face the music.

I cannot stand that woman... I don't wish her ill, but she did look it.. She has MS and stress aggravates it...

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