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Sat Apr 21, 2012, 09:32 AM

Romney's Message: Obama's Not a Real American

http://motherjones.com/politics/2012/04/ted-nugent-conservatives-mitt-romney

Romney's Message: Obama's Not a Real American
Forget Ted Nugent's violent rhetoric; the GOP candidate has been mainstreaming the Obama-ain't-one-of-us meme for months.

—By David Corn
| Fri Apr. 20, 2012 3:00 AM PDT


Ted Nugent's violent remarks at the NRA's annual paranoia-fest triggered (pun intended) a new round in the always-good-for-cable debate over extreme rhetoric in the political discourse. The episode showed—no surprise—that GOP presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney was unwilling to condemn an out-of-bounds Obama-hater when his campaign released a mealy-mouthed response to the uproar, ignoring Nugent's specific comments and noting that "Mitt Romney believes everyone needs to be civil." And Nugent's threatening words were nothing new; in 2007, he held up two machine guns at a concert and told Obama to "suck on my machine gun," adding, "Hillary, you might want to ride one of these into the sunset, you worthless bitch." But his latest rant, in which he denounced Obama's "vile, evil America-hating administration," was part of a never-ending Republican/conservative crusade to portray the president as not a true American. And it's an effort that Romney has played footsie with.

For years, conservatives have said (or implied) that Obama is not really one of us: He was born in Kenya, he's a secret Muslim, he pals around with terrorists. They have also endeavored to attach this otherism to all Democrats. Ex-presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) accused Obama and his wife of holding "anti-American views" and called on the media to investigate Democratic members of Congress to determine if they were anti-American, too. Last week, Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.), a tea party darling, declared that "there's about 78 to 81 members of the Democratic Party that are members of the Communist Party." After he was lambasted for uttering this absurd charge, he defiantly proclaimed that he did not regret his statement and reaffirmed his stance: "I'm not going to back down. I'm not going to be afraid about the fact that I called a spade a spade." (House Speaker John Boehner said nothing about West's derogatory and fact-free claim.)

Labeling anyone left of center a commie or traitor who hates America is a time-tested tradition of conservative politics that stretches back decades, from the Palmer Raids to the McCarthy era to Richard Nixon's criminal administration to Ronald Reagan's attempt to smear the anti-nuclear movement as a Moscow spin-off. Romney is too moderate (and too fearful of losing independent voters) to engage in DEFCON-1-level rhetorical nuking. But he has devised a way to speak to—and exploit—this sentiment without contracting cat-scratch fever.

Romney routinely criticizes Obama as someone who neither likes America nor gets it. In his book, No Apology: The Case for American Greatness, Romney decried Obama for repeatedly apologizing for "American misdeeds, both real and imagined." (He didn't explain what was wrong with apologizing for real misdeeds.) PolitiFact.com judged Romney's claim "false." Yet this untrue accusation has been a steady theme of Romney's campaign. At a speech earlier this month to the Newspaper Association of America, Romney asserted that Obama failed to rescue the US economy in his first years in office because he was too busy "apologizing for America abroad." Romney's point is obvious: Real Americans don't apologize for America.

snip//

Romney doesn't call Obama a commie. He doesn't question his birthplace. He doesn't say the president is a criminal. He doesn't suggest he's Muslim-y. He doesn't declare that Obama hates America or harbors anti-American views. But Romney has welcomed the backing of those who make these types of claims, and he has even courted these over-the-top Obama foes (as he did with Nugent, after the gun-lovin', aging rocker had violently threatened Obama and Hillary Clinton). He legitimizes and exploits those who engage in Obama hate-mongering and who debase the political discourse Romney claims to care about. More important, with his own words, Romney has attempted to reinforce the notion that Obama is not truly part of the nation he leads. He has mainstreamed the Obama-ain't-really-American meme of the right. And that is hardly civil.

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Romney's Message: Obama's Not a Real American (Original post)
babylonsister Apr 2012 OP
rocktivity Apr 2012 #1
myrna minx Apr 2012 #2
Texas-Limerick Apr 2012 #3
polichick Apr 2012 #4
and-justice-for-all Apr 2012 #5
whistler162 Apr 2012 #6
ProudProgressiveNow Apr 2012 #7
sofa king Apr 2012 #8

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Apr 21, 2012, 09:39 AM

1. Rocktivity's Message: Romney's not a real human being




rocktivity

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Apr 21, 2012, 10:37 AM

2. myrna minx's message: Romney is not an Earthling.

Seriously. I'm waiting for him to have that awkward chuckle when he mentions enjoying "wintering" at Earth's capital.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Apr 21, 2012, 07:44 PM

3. Obama's Message Back

 


I  see you have some apprehension 
Totally lacking comprehension
Of other people's pain
Tho your Daddy was a liberal
You're a diff'rant individual
Karl Rove controls your brain

I know  what you're athinkin'
They'll never allow another Lincoln
Your party's not the same
Up not down would be sensational
But his pull is gravitational
Karl Rove controls your brain

But no matter whose water I'm afetchin'
It's not me who keeps goose-steppin'
When others are in pain
If schadenfreude makes you merry
Go ahead and stay a dingleberry
Karl Rove controls your brain

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Apr 21, 2012, 08:25 PM

4. Romney should be ashamed, but many Republicans have no shame...

Romney is really selling his soul this time around.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Apr 23, 2012, 06:36 PM

5. Rmoney is a Cylon..nt

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Apr 23, 2012, 08:00 PM

6. Yup... just look at President Obama

he has a parent that wasn't born in this country so he can't be a real American!<SARCASM>

Egads... what if disaster strikes and we elect someone whose parent was born in fureign place like Mexico! How would we ever survive?

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Response to whistler162 (Reply #6)

Mon Apr 23, 2012, 08:19 PM

7. Touche' n/t

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Apr 23, 2012, 09:20 PM

8. It's an interesting indicator of how screwed Romney really is.

If Romney had the right-wing authoritarians in the bag, he could simply allow his surrogates to keep the "unAmerican Obama" balloon in the air for him.

But he doesn't have them in the bag yet, just as RWA voters were unenthusiastic about John McCain in 2008. Without their unusually high turnout, McCain lost and so too will Romney.

Now Romney has to earn credibility with the knuckledraggers by stomping in the "unAmerican Obama" shitpile.

Every time Romney does that, unfortunately for him, he also alienates a certain number of undecided voters who know for sure that issue is a bunch of crap, and motivates others to make sure they are registered to vote against him.

RWAs comprise 23% of the voting population and turn out in numbers that amplify their importance far beyond that. No modern Republican can win a statewide or national election without their unquestioning support, which is why the GOP has drifted ever further to the right.

Romney now has to risk losing reasonable voters to gain the trust of the Brownshirts. Whatever you think of the strategy, the time for Romney to have won their support has long since passed.

The fact that Romney is still trying to win the support of the Republican base, despite pouring in massive money, time and effort into gaming the primary system in his favor, means he has already failed in a tangible and highly significant way.

As of today, I'm adding +4 electoral votes to President Obama in my prediction for November, now up to 413.

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