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Posted by on Aug 7, 2009 in Politics | 4 comments

Mitt Romney Breaks Out the Poison Pen

MittBook.jpgMitt Romney has inked a deal to publish a new book in March of 2010, just in time for the mid-term election season and setting himself up nicely to launch a 2012 bid for the White House. Titled “No Apologies,” it seems fairly clear what ground the former Mass. governor is seeking to stake out, possibly giving a boost to his party’s message as they try to climb back from the minority office in Congress.

Titled “No Apology: The Case for American Greatness,” the book outlines what appears to be a campaign platform: Mr. Romney’s views on how to create a stronger economy, military and families, and his vision on jobs, education, health care, energy and citizenship. The manuscript is currently 304 pages.

From one angle, the title lends itself to a common theme which Romney will need to adopt if he hopes to win over the base in the primary. GOP supporters have tried to spin gold from straw on Obama’s foreign policy positions, referring to his overseas visits as the president’s “apology tour.” The basic idea is that the president should never “apologize” to the rest of the world for any American missteps nor admit to any mistakes or faults, and if Romney can tap into that meme, he may do better than in his last outing against John McCain.

Unfortunately, that may be the weakest point he could stress in a general election. Obama saw an uptick in popularity after his Cairo speech and the public has been generally supportive of his willingness to own up to the damage done to our international relations by the last president’s handling of the Iraq war and tensions between the U.S and the Muslim world.

Far more fertile ground will be found if he focuses on Obama’s domestic agenda, where the campaign’s talking points pretty much write themselves. But I suppose that would be a waste of ink, since any of his potential primary opponents will be hammering on the same dismal numbers everywhere they go.

Emily Miller points out that Romney’s current lack of political office has probably pushed him onto the book tour circuit.

The former governor of Massachusetts, who ran for president in 2008, leads early polls for the 2012 White House race against President Obama. But, without a current public office, Romney needs a means to keep up his public profile, other than the occasional interview or op-ed. So, a book tour – which involves national media interviews and speaking events — would provide him that opportunity.

I never thought Romney stood a chance in 2008, mostly because of a combination of his “Mormon problem” and his rather abrupt conversion to hard core conservatism, which left many Republicans wondering how sincere he was in those beliefs. Personally, I liked the Massachusetts version of Romney a lot better than the one who wanted to be President, but McCain’s poor showing last fall has left a lot of Republicans with a bad case of buyer’s remorse, and they may be looking at Mitt with some new found love in their eyes next time around. This new book will probably serve as the unofficial launching point for his campaign and get him back out on the circuit of Sunday mornning chat festivals to make his case to Republicans for another grab at the brass ring.