Get ready, here it comes: expect late night comedians to have a field day with the news that Republican nominee Mitt Romney — who has never been considered an ace wit or life of the party quipster — has been working on a batch of zinger lines since August to deliver at key moments in this week’s debate with Barack Obama.

Be sure to watch Letterman, Leno, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert early this week. I bet David Letterman will have a Top 10 List of suggested zinger lines (and, Dave, if you weren’t planning to do this and you’re a TMV reader it’s always nice to help brainstorm comedy ideas).

Some comment on this and suggested lines are already appearing on Twitter. A cross section of Tweets:

6h David Simas ?@d_simas
NYT reports that Mitt Romney will have a “series of zingers” ready for the debate with POTUS. Seems like a series of plans would be better.

34m DR ?@pollbuster
#RomneyZingers Ann is a stay at 5 homes mom.

1h Simon Maloy ?@SimonMaloy
“Whoa, last time a saw a mouth like that my manservant was taking a hook out of it!” #RomneyDangerfield #RomneyZingers

1h Vent ?@vcthree
Romney practicing zingers for the debate is like the guy that practices pick-up lines for that one night at the bar.

2h Frank Conniff ?@FrankConniff
Romney preparing a bunch of “zingers” for the debate. Viewers also have the option of purchasing a voucher for a zinger.

2h Danielle Blake ?@DCPlod
Romney campaign to prepare zingers for Mitt to ensure that nothing, not even his humour, is genuine.

3h Clara Jeffery ?@ClaraJeffery
“Where’s the Kobe beef? #RomneyZingers

3h Jeff Gauvin ?@JeffersonObama
I Was So Poor At College….I Had To Sell Some Of My Offshore Hedge Fund Certificates #RomneyZingers #p2

4h Jeff Gauvin ?@JeffersonObama
Are you better off than one of my prized horses America? #RomneyZingers

4h Marta Evry ?@venice4change
“You’re so poor, you only have one house” #RomneyZingers

8h sfpelosi ?@sfpelosi
Rather than policy merits or zingers, focus on the way non-politicos Obama & Romney allow themselves to be vulnerable & political in debates

9h scary lawyerguy ?@scarylawyerguy
5, actually RT @gregpinelo: “You don’t have to own 4 houses to know housing market isn’t where it should be, Mr. President” #RomneyZingers

10h steven mink ?@minkmanva
#RomneyZingers mr. President, who let the dogs out?
from Washington, DC Reply Retweet Favorite

From the #RomneyZingers Twitter page (cross section):

27m Gen JC Christian ?@JC_Christian
Obama stole my bad, I mean good, no bad heath care idea #RomneyZingers

28m Steve Ferra ?@AbPow
“Kenya believe how bad my opponent has wrecked the economy? Kenya?” #RomneyZingers
Expand Reply Retweet Favorite

1h Scott ® Crawford ?@scottRcrawford
“I’ve displaced plenty of workers in my time, Mr. President. You won’t be the first.” #RomneyZingers

Rob Tannenbaum ?@tannenbaumr
“He’s got the White House, but I’ve got a dozen houses.” #Romneyzingers
Expand Reply Retweet Favorite

5h Jeff Greenfield ?@greenfield64
#romneyzingers “Take my wives–please!”

7h gvdfrog ?@gvdfrog
Obamacare? I built that. #RomneyZingers #MittZingers

10h Greg Pinelo ?@gregpinelo
“Mr President, you’ve left this economy on the roof far too long!” #RomneyZingers
Expand Reply Retweet Favorite

And also on Twitter:

alex jimenez ?@BernardLeCroix
“I’m a job producer. Do you think my parasite staff would be employed otherwise?” #RomneyZinger

3h Macartisan ?@macartisan
Leaked #RomneyZinger: “Look at his HAIR! He can’t look like that!”

6h Holy Bullies ?@holybullies
#Romneyzinger – “Yo mama so stupid that she got into an elevator and thought she was in my car garage.”


David Waldman ?@KagroX
The audience at the debate should download the “Rimshot!” app and play the sounds after every suspected zinger.

mommadona™ ?@mommadona
When Romney tries “here, pull my finger” zinger at debate, suggest Obama have that large “KICK ME” sign ready for Romney’s back pat ~ #SEE?

Stephen C. Rose ?@stephencrose
I can just see Obama brushing off a Romney zinger and Romney crying but I memorized it!!!

It was a HUGE MISTAKE for the Romney advisor to tell the NY Times about him working on zingers. Everyone SUSPECTS these remarks are prepared, but usually it comes out in reportage a bit after the debate so the zinger has impact (one example is Ronald Reagan’s “There you go again..”). Now the fact that he has been preparing to look witty is out there ALREADY and if he says something — even a real, off the cuff zinger — it’ll be dismissed by some. If you know the actor’s script before the performance and then spot him performing it, it takes away some of the impact…

JOE GANDELMAN, Editor-In-Chief
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  • labman57

    Zingers? Perhaps Romney will follow the lead of some right wing bloggers and make derisive remarks about Obama’s mamma.

    Or perhaps Mitt will head the advice given by Gingrich:
    If you don’t like the question or don’t know the answer, behave indignantly and insult the person asking the question, and then give a stump speech on an unrelated topic.

    Alas, this is a debate, not amateur night at the local comedy club.
    Maybe Mitt will follow up his shtick with some “fancy pageant walking …”