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Mitt: A Giving Person

Everyone knows that former Gov. Mitt Romney (R-Mass.) is wealthy.

Reports vary about the extent of that wealth but it seems to be in the $190 million to $260 million range. (The Fix would kill to be in that "range.") One of the big unanswered questions when trying to analyze the race for the Republican nomination is just how much of his fortune Romney is willing to spend.

To date Romney has loaned his campaign just short of $9 million -- $2.35 million in the first quarter and another $6.5 million in the second. His campaign has sought to downplay the extent of his personal donations, saying only that as long as regular Americans invest in Romnney he will continue to do the same.

Kevin Madden, Romney's national spokesman, pointed out that Romney has 80,000 donors -- the most in the Republican field -- and continues to build a broad-based fundraising operation. "We will not suffer for lack of resources and our volunteer donor base is and will be as strong as anyone in the race," said Madden.

That statement leaves significant running room for Romney to continue to give. And, no matter what they say publicly, Romney aides privately express a confidence that Romney is committed to ensuring his campaign does not falter for lack of funds.

In each of his past races -- for Senate in 1994 and governor in 2002 -- Romney has made a significant personal contribution. When he challenged Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) in 1994, Romnney gave $3 million of his own dollars to the race; eight years later he doubled that contribution in his winning campaign for governor.

Romney has already exceeded those past totals and those familiar with his thinking believe he is committed to giving far more if it means winning the nomination. How much? One source familiar with the Romney operation estimates that Romney's personal giving could wind up between $40 and $60 million.

Let's put that in perspective: To date, Romney has raised a total of $44 million. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani has raised $35.6 million. If Romney is willing (he certainly appears able) to put in even the low end of that $40 and $60 million estimate, it gives him a huge leg up when it comes to planning a campaign in the multiple states voting on Feb. 5 -- including costly giants like California, Illinois , and Georgia.

Don't forget that back in 2004 Sen. John Kerry's miraculous comeback in Iowa and beyond was fueled by a $6 million personal donation to his campaign. The money allowed him to flood the Iowa airwaves with ads and mailings that led to his eventual victory in the Hawkeye State and beyond.

Romney has that sort of advantage in spades. Any time his campaign appears to be slowing or needs any sort of infusion, he can whip out the check book. It's a HUGE advantage for Romney and one that so far has been overlooked in coverage of the money race.

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 25, 2007; 12:32 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Posted by: wourorcoubret | August 1, 2007 2:05 AM | Report abuse

Please everyone everyone....why does the mormon issue have to come up all the time. There are other politicians that are mormon as well. Harry Reid for instance is also Mormon. They both are opposite in there political beleifs. The mormon church will not interefere with what Romney will do as President. And please please just look at the values and morales of the Mormon church. Look at the people look at the fruit that comes from there labors. They are some of the most industrious hard working god fearing people in the country. And they hold Christian values. Don't be so narrow minded and short sighted to believe that just because he is mormon he will not make a good President. Just look at what he has done in the past.

You do not have to read the book of mormon to decide if MItt is a good person for president ha ha. I cannot believe that was even suggested.

He has told you his core bleifs.
strong family
strong military
strong economy

He is a god fearing conservative man.
enough said

Posted by: Trevor | July 29, 2007 5:37 AM | Report abuse

Please everyone everyone....why does the mormon issue have to come up all the time. There are other politicians that are mormon as well. Harry Reid for instance is also Mormon. They both are opposite in there political beleifs. The mormon church will not interefere with what Romney will do as President. And please please just look at the values and morales of the Mormon church. Look at the people look at the fruit that comes from there labors. They are some of the most industrious hard working god fearing people in the country. And they hold Christian values. Don't be so narrow minded and short sighted to believe that just because he is mormon he will not make a good President. Just look at what he has done in the past.

You do not have to read the book of mormon to decide if MItt is a good person for president ha ha. I cannot believe that was even suggested.

He has told you his core bleifs.
strong family
strong military
strong economy

He is a god fearing conservative man.
enough said

Posted by: Trevor | July 29, 2007 5:37 AM | Report abuse

Romneys donations show that he is a man dedicated to accomplishing the task at hand. Also he has lots of money because the man is successful at every thing that he does.
He is the best man suited for the job. When looking for someone that is fit for presidency. I beleive you have to look at every aspect of there life. You must look at there family life and personal life. What type of person are they. Mitt is a good person all around. He can make things happen and fix problems. He is a perfect candidate for President. And he will win.

Posted by: Trevor | July 29, 2007 5:32 AM | Report abuse

Suitable mental qualities?? Nice comment. Thanks for inviting people to read the Book of Mormon skyline. It's a good book. Do you know any "Mormon" people though Skyline?
And Mitt made $200+ million dollars in life, he's got more mental whatever than you, me, and alot of people.

Posted by: MattN | July 28, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I agree Skyline. I wouldn't let anyone who believed or professed to believe any of the ridiculous things Mormons or any other religion on earth believed have the monopoly on violence. Their mentality is simple - mob rule.

Posted by: Gr | July 26, 2007 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Considering Romney is a member of the Church of Latter Day Saints, everyone should familiarize themselves with the Book of Mormon before deciding whether or not a person who ascribes to those beliefs is a person with suitable mental qualities to be President of the United States. If you have not read at least part of the Book of Mormon, you are not ready to make an educated decision.

The post previous to this was not intended to be sent anonymously.

Posted by: Skyline | July 26, 2007 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Considering Romney is a member of the Church of Latter Day Saints, everyone should familiarize themselves with the Book of Mormon before deciding whether or not a person who ascribes to those beliefs is a person with suitable mental qualities to be President of the United States. If you have not read at least part of the Book of Mormon, you are not ready to make an educated decision.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Another quote, showing the court was only pushing its secular agenda, even as it used language from Jefferson out of context:

It's clear, though, that the Everson Court used Jefferson's words, not his ideas. The separation language itself was not in common use at the time. It does not show up in any notes of the Constitutional Convention or of the Congress responsible for the Bill of Rights or the First Amendment.

What was Jefferson's intent? To show that the Federal government couldn't establish a national denomination. That's all. In another letter, this one to Samuel Miller in 1808, Jefferson expanded on his view:

Certainly, no power to prescribe any religious exercise, or to assume authority in religious discipline, has been delegated to the General Government. It must then rest with the States, as far is it can be in any human authority.[viii]

This is a stunning revelation for advocates of a Jeffersonian model of separation. According to Jefferson, the Federal Government couldn't prescribe religious exercise or discipline, but the states could. It wasn't until 1947 that the Everson Court made the federal provision binding on the states, expressly contrary to Jefferson, though they quoted him for support.

Posted by: Mike | July 26, 2007 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Mark -- This is a copy+paste from one of the things I've read about Everson. I'll link the rest of it at the bottom. This isn't my only source, however, but I do think you aren't quite right about the "Wall of Separation".

Begin Copy+Paste

What Does "Separation of Church and State" Mean?
The current understanding of "separation of church and state"--the view that the state is thoroughly secular and not influenced by religious values, especially Christian--was completely foreign to the first 150 years of American political thought. Clearly the Fathers did not try to excise every vestige of Christian religion, Christian thought, and Christian values from all facets of public life. They were friendly to Christianity and encouraged its public practice and expression.

It wasn't until 1947 that the United States Supreme Court first used the concept of "separation" to isolate government from religion.[ii] In Everson v. Board of Education, the court lifted a phrase from a letter Thomas Jefferson wrote to a Baptist church in Danbury, Connecticut. The Court ruled, "Neither a state nor the Federal Government can set up a church. Neither can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion over another....In the words of Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect 'a wall of separation between church and state.'"[iii]

This was one of the first things that popped up when I googled "Everson Separation of Church and State"

Posted by: Mike | July 26, 2007 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Mark -- Being new to this site, I am becoming ever greatful for your contributions.

I'll go back and look in to Everson.

Regarding Roe, I think the true "activism" was the fact that the court even reviewed the case in the first place.

Moreover, a 3rd trimester fetus is viable outside the womb. Yet, Hillary et. al. support abotion "On-Demand", even in the 3rd trimester. That is not only immoral, but unconstitutional by the guidlines you provided.

My question to Blarg is, why do the Democrats support this position?

Why do they never get asked? You see the Republicans being asked, "Why don't you support a woman's right to choose" all the time.

When will CNN step up and ask the Democrats, "Why DO you support 3rd trimester, and other late-term abortions"?

Posted by: Mike | July 26, 2007 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Blarg, after reading your 11:10p post, I now understand that you were using sarcasm and adopting the extreme position to make a point. I did not realize you were doing this the first time, I took your 'out there' post at face value. Sorry.

Posted by: JD | July 26, 2007 8:05 AM | Report abuse

OK - I found something I know about - the discussion of the "wall of separation".

In 1878, in Reynolds, the Supremes upheld the conviction of a Mormon polygamist against his free exercise of religion defense. They cited Jefferson's Danbury letter and said that the gov could not regulate belief but it could regulate conduct - that the separation of church and state trumped the free exercise clause as to conduct, otherwise a person could argue for human sacrifice under the free exercise clause, and the church law could trump the state law, and everybody would just do their own thing [I paraphrase, obviously].
In 1947, Everson against Ewing Twnsp B of E was decided in favor of NJ reimbursing parents for all bus transport of kids to school, even if they went to Catholic schools. Black cited the Jefferson Danbury letter to the effect that the state could not favor a religion, or religion over non-religion, or vice versa, because any breaches of separation could lead down the road to Establishment. However, paying for all the kids in the district to get busses did not favor anyone and served a valid state purpose. 4 judges dissented citing Madison's Remonstrances. Jackson and
Frankfurter were two of the dissenters. I remember that because they were far more restrainist than Black, who wrote the opinion. When lawyers talk about restraint and activism on the court we are generally referring to the relative willingness to change either established case law or void a legislative act. I hear politicians talk and they mean something very different.

So, Mike, I think you are citing secondary sources, which about this issue are grossly inaccurate. I have named these two cases for you so that you can find them on the web. Drawing the line between free exercise and establishment is not always easy.

You should also read Roe v. Wade carefully.
The State of Texas argued that "born" = "conceived" in order to try to extend 14th A protection to the fetus. That is too big a stretch. The legal argument is not about when life begins - it is about who is "born". The R v. W. Court played Solomon and said "born"="could be viable outside the womb" [and recited the entire common law history of when a fetus was considered "quick"]and created an issue that will eventually disappear when technology allows
a "new" fetus to be completely viable outside the womb. I am one who thinks that case should not have been reviewed by the Court at all. But it would have been dishonest and very activist to accept Texas' argument that born = conceived.

Posted by: Mark in Austin | July 26, 2007 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Why don't you be a man for a change and admit that your buddy Mike turned support for choice into support for abortion?

Posted by: Truth hurts, eh JD? | July 25, 2007 11:22 PM | Report abuse

I'm in Santa Fe for the ABA employment law seminar so it is only 9:14p here. Hope y'all
are not up past your bedtimes. Blarg, it sounds as if I missed something before the "Marxism" stuff that I now have time to read,
it being only 9:16p in my hotel room in Santa Fe.

Posted by: Mark in Austin | July 25, 2007 11:17 PM | Report abuse

Blarg, I can't believe your feelings are still hurt.

I hope I didn't ruin your entire day.

And yes, I think the liberal agenda of immediate withdrawal and impeachment of the President will lead to a genocide.

I'm' sorry if that offends you.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 11:13 PM | Report abuse

I only covered economics a few times in my study of finance and accounting.

The Fed is for monitary policy. Their goal (as stated on their website) is to combat inflation. They have a couple tools. Obviously, fiscal policy is government spending and taxation.

There have been combinations tried -- loose fiscal-tight monetary, tight fiscal-loose monetary, loose-loose, etc.

Not sure which is the best combination, I suppose that's open for debate. Any thoughts (with examples)?

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 11:11 PM | Report abuse

JD, pay attention to the discussion. Mike intentionally misrepresented Democratic policy by saying that all Democrats are in favor of failure, murder, and genocide. (He claims that he "inadvertently" offended me. How could he know that people don't like being accused of supporting genocide?)

By that logic, it's equally fair to say that all Republicans are in favor of girls dying of cancer, since some Republicans oppose a vaccine that may prevent some cancer. I'm not saying that I believe this, but it's no more of a distortion than what Mike said. Sadly, the other examples of ridiculous Republican positions I came up with got no objection from Mike; I apparently couldn't think of anything so ludicrous that he doesn't believe it.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 11:10 PM | Report abuse

I read the communist manifesto in high school, though it hasn't been quite as long ago for me as for you Mark.

And I didn't skip that many happy hours JD. I have to say I was annoyed by the MBA types at the time...

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Mark, as usual, I would not presume to adjust your de novo review of the issues.

(P.S. MBA in strategic mgmt/econ double, BBA in econometrics; MSs are for people who skipped the happy hours. BBAs are for guys like me, who aren't exactly bringing the potato salad to the Mensa picnic.)

Posted by: JD | July 25, 2007 10:52 PM | Report abuse

In my story, substitute "The Communist Manifesto" for "das Kapital". I read "Kapital" in college. It is much longer.

Posted by: Mark in Austin | July 25, 2007 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Scandal and arguments between candidates often consumes the media and campaign spotlights. Thus far, most media attention has focused on the war in Iraq and recent scandals in the White House. There are critical topics of great importance that I would like to see our candidate address each other and to the public, especially with the issue of global poverty. As one of the nation that has pledge to fulfill the goals of Millennium Development Project, whose goal is the elimination of world hunger and poverty, this administration has not shown any substantial action to bring this fundamental problem to a stop. According to the Borgen Project, dedicated to fighting and ending Poverty around the world, only $19 billion dollars are needed annually to stop world wide poverty, hunger and malnutrition. However, more than $340 billion dollars has been poured into this "war on terror." And each year, our country has a military budge of $522 billion dollars. It's time for a new leader who will be addressing an issue that affects 1.2 billion people everyday worldwide.

Posted by: Mstessyrue | July 25, 2007 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Mike, ask JD, who I believe has an MS in economics, about your Marxism issue.

My recollection of Marxist economics [I majored in eco and minored in math as an undergraduate, but this is now ancient history for me] is that its fatal flaw is something called "the labor theory of value" which gives no credence to capital or r&d on the cost side, or to supply and demand causing price to be a measure of value.

In the 60s, liberal economists were "Keynesian" and conservatives were "Chicago" or "Friedman" school.

My simplified recollection is that Friedman was a monetarist but Keynes believed in fiscal manipulation as more effective than interest rate/money supply moves. The standard capitalist fiscal manipulation model ran deficits in recessions and surpluses in booms with the idealized notion that over a business cycle [maybe 5 yrs] the budget would balance out.

Our Fed Reserve has often borne out the monetarist view, I think, and the fiscal view is not discredited by history either. However, special interests, and earmarks, and the force of a political system in which every congressperson wants to display the new trinket for his district has kept the budget in near permanent deficit, except for the Gingrich-Clinton agreement that if that late 90s boom could not run a surplus we would never have one.

JD will correct me if I have misstated, and he can also update my 1964 view of this.

I suspect that you are not comparing Marxist economics with the various schools of capitalism, but that you are comparing
"collectivism" with "individualism", which is mainly a social and political, but not serious economic debate. Even here, Marx as a political philosopher was into a notion he called the "withering away of the state". To me, Marx was a literate fool.

Two stories: When I was thirteen, my dad gave me "das Kapital" to read [in English]
and asked me to look for its flaw. It was only 47 pages long, I think, and it was boring. So I told dad I did not see the flaw. He said to read the first sentence aloud. I did - "The history of the world is the history of class struggle".
dad: "Is that the sum of history?"
13 yr old: "I dunno."
dad: "How about the history of the world is the history of technological and scientific innovation? How about the history of the world is the history of religion? How about the history of the world is the history of trade and commerce?"
He went on and on. I said "well, its all that." And he said that any treatise that is based on the notion that all of history is only one small aspect of it fails because if the premise is faulty all the conclusions are wrong.

Second story - I had a Marxist prof for history of American economic thought. He knew no economic theory at all. On my first exam I used mathematics to demonstrate the fallacies of his recent lectures.

I made peace with him afterward by writing short outlines of his views, and arguing against them with my then fresh understanding of capitalism. He was a good
sport about it as long as I could show I had listened to his lectures. Finished with an "A".

Posted by: Mark in Austin | July 25, 2007 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Well, Blarg?

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 9:30 PM | Report abuse

We have to immunize about 10,000 girls before we prevent a case of cervical cancer. One of the lower price tags I saw on the Gardasil vaccine was $360. So that's a cost of 3.6-million dollars to prevent a case of cervical cancer.

Now, with proper screening, cervical cancer has an 85% 5-year survival rate. That comes out to about 24-million dollars per prevented cervical cancer death.

Does this sound like money well spent to anyone else? Frankly, I could think of many other things far more useful on a per dollar basis to spend money on in healthcare.

Posted by: And for those curious.... | July 25, 2007 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Bokonon -- You didn't read what I wrote.

"Separation of Church and State" appears no where.

And I would ask that you at least respect most American's beliefs and not call ideas from the Bible "crap".

Separation first appeared in a letter by Jefferson to some religious folks who feared the state would harm their church.

In 1908 the US supreme court declared that we are "a christian nation".

It was only in '47 that the "separation of church and state" was mis-used and re-defined, to mean that the state needs protection from the church.

Don't call me ignorant, do your research.

The ONLY reason people like you want to take God out of our pledge, out of our money, and out of CHRISTmas is due to the activist judges in '47 who misinterpreted Jefferson's words.

And if you don't think there are tenants of Marxism in liberalism maybe you should re-read whatever books you want to recommend to me.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 8:50 PM | Report abuse

This talk of the HPV vaccine amuses me. Most of its strongest advocates have no idea how extremely rare the disease really is. Nor are they aware of the fact that routine check-ups essentially prevent the disease.

The shot is okay, I guess. It's waaaay too over-priced for its health benefits. Merck is making hundreds upon hundreds of dollars for each person innoculated, and it's all being subsidized and enforced by state political bodies. You'd get more bang for your buck with a HepA vaccine.

I don't get the extreme outrage against it, either, but any lib trying to hold this over a conservative's head really doesn't know what he's talking about.

Posted by: Raconteur | July 25, 2007 8:40 PM | Report abuse

The advantage has been overlooked, and Mitt will want it to stay that way. The more low-key he can make his wealth, the better it is for him.

Posted by: JayPe | July 25, 2007 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Mike, you reveal your ignorance in two key ways. First, the Constitution explicitly forbids the establishment of a state religion. Americans are free to worship or not worship as they choose. Doesn't square with "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" and all the other "tremble before me" crap of which the bible is full. Secondly, Harvard is only slightly more Marxist than you yourself seem to be. The average Harvard undergrad could probably buy your house twice before lunch without worrying too much about it. Do they - at least many of them - believe in PROGRESSIVE politics? Yeah, probably. Did they support the current Iraqle? Mostly not. I could say the same about many many other non-Marxists I know, myself included.
btw - just curious - do you actually KNOW anything about Marxism as an economic theory? Have you ever read Marx? Because it really doesn't have much to do with 21st century liberalism in this country, or even with the 20th century Soviet Union - it's focused more on 19th century Prussia (Germany.) Marx was not a pacifist - after all, he advocated class warfare, although he did oppose the use of armed conflict as a cynical means of distracting/disempowering the masses. Anyway, a lot of what you would characterize as "socialist" has been a part of political theory for thousands of years - some back to the Greek philosophers - and has more to do with the original idea of "democracy" than with anything else. What does that tell you?
If you would like, I can recommend some good reading for you which can explain socialist theory - one book even contrasts it with the "Socialist Boogeyman" invented in the '50s by the American right wing.

Posted by: Bokonon | July 25, 2007 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Nice one, Get Over Yourself. Does mommy know you're on her computer?

Time to come up from the basement now, you 13 yr old boy.

Posted by: JD | July 25, 2007 6:33 PM | Report abuse

Pro-Choice != Pro-Abortion?

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Blarg's analogy to the HPV virus and cervical cancer is as valid as Mike's turning support for abortion choice into support for abortion.

Now you and Mike can go back to jerking each other off.

Posted by: Get over yourself JD | July 25, 2007 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Blarg has been acting dumb all day because I inadvertently hurt his feelings. Hopefully by tomorrow he'll be over it.

Until then, you're right Blarg - not wanting to FORCE the payment for, and administration of, a vaccine is equivalent of wishing harm on people.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Blarg, give us a break. If someone is against the MANDATORY innoculation for HPV prevetion, that doesn't mean that they WANT the disease to strike the target population. It means that it's not Government's job to force those kinds of decisions on people.

Just like it's not their job to play nanny across many other public health issues where there is no danger of pandemic/mass infection. It's not their job to enforce prohibition alcohol, tobacco, and many other dangers.

Please, lose the dumb act.

Posted by: JD | July 25, 2007 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Lil' Mitt will always have unlimited access to as much cash as he wants as long as he remains a loyal member of his cult... The Money-Lovin' Mormons. The cult of Mormonism believes that only the wealthy are worthy of God's love and that any behavior is permissible if it results in obtaining money. Mormons might not use drugs themselves, but they will sell them to others for personal profit. Mormons might not gamble, but have no problem financing casinos and organized crime because it brings them lots of money. Mormonism is the world's most wealthy cult, and Mitt is a true believer...."In Gold We Trust".

Posted by: Hades | July 25, 2007 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Romney's adept at manipulation, that much we know. In business he excelled as a buyer and seller of companies, a master at the art of persuasion that he demonstrated at Bain Capital.

He made his money mainly through leveraged buyouts -- essentially, mortgaging companies to take them over in the hope of reselling them at big profits in just a few years.

It is a bare-knuckle form of investing that is in the spotlight because of the exploding profits of buyout giants like Bain, Blackstone and the Carlyle Group.

In Washington, Congress is considering ending a legal quirk that lets fund managers escape much of the income tax on their earnings.

"The amounts of money are so vast that it is truly a matter of time before the taxation of private equity is front and center of the public agenda," said James E. Post, a Boston University professor who teaches business-government relations.

"Increasingly, this world of private equity looks like a world of robber barons, and Romney comes out of that world."

Posted by: romney's money trail | July 25, 2007 4:52 PM | Report abuse

I'm talking about the HPV vaccine, which Republicans oppose. The vaccine prevents HPV, HPV causes cervical cancer, so opposing the vaccine means supporting cervical cancer. Therefore you, as a supporter of the Republican Party, want girls to die from cancer. Right?

You never apologized for saying that I (and all other Democrats) support genocide and baby-killing. You tried to weasel out of it by saying that you didn't mean what you said and were just illustrating the stereotypes of Democrats, but I don't buy it. I refuse to engage in a discussion with you because there's no evidence that you want a discussion. You just want to attack strawmen like "Democrats want to lose all wars", and you certainly don't need my help to do that.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Slick-Willy -- I think that's a really good thing to keep in mind - that Romney has led a variety of large organizations, and it's unlikely that he has lost control of his financial position.

I once read an article in the Harvard Review about Mitt and his handling of the Olympics. For a left-leaning publication from one of the last havens of Marxism in the country, it was full of some pretty high praise.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 4:40 PM | Report abuse

The poverty problems on the earth are huge. However, using income per day figures to explain how poor people are is misleading. In Peru (an average South American country), a family can be provided for on very little $ ($5/day is normal). University professors down there often only make $8-10/day. Obviously Peru would benefit by a higher national income. However, people there can live well off a tiny fraction of the $ required to live in America.

Posted by: Slick-Willy | July 25, 2007 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Darius -- you're right, character/integrity are so vital to a candidate that they can never be understated.

Slick-Willy -- Your point on global warming not being a certainty was well-written, and I couldn't have said it better myself if I tried.

Blarg -- I'm not sure what you're refering to with the cancer thing.

I do happen to believe that the Bible is much more important than the consitution. But don't think it's an either-or scenario. It's a complementary relationship, a both-and. And actually, the consitition was based on Biblical teachings (separation of church/state was actually never written in a single founding document).

I also happen to believe that illegal immigrants should not be here. We have to enforce the law or else it has no meaning. We also have to secure our borders, as we face this decentralized, committed, enemy.

I understand that you're still upset about my characterization of your beliefs, but it's been hours now, and you still refuse to engage in a discussion. I've already apologized and explained myself.

If you would prefer, we can just ignore eachother henceforth

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse


It really isn't a red flag. Romney has more experience running organizations than all other candidates combined. He knows what he is doing, how much he is spending and his plans for the future. You will likely never see a shake-up in his campaign as has been seen in Fred's this week. Romney studies data and plans meticulously.

And, one doesn't have to wonder where the $ came from. Aside from a blind trust he created in the last decade, his investments and income are all public knowledge. Go look it up if you're interested.

Posted by: Slick-Willy | July 25, 2007 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I am not sure how one can spend "too much time" considering the character of the one person who will most represent our country to the rest of the world. I do agree world poverty must be addressed, but I am not as bold as to say that it will be a major campaign issue. When one watches the actual happenings of the House and Senate, the large issues become obvious. For details see:

The problem is real, but it has not yet entered the "first-tier" agenda with the candidates that are considered "first-tier".

Posted by: Darius | July 25, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, I meant to say that Mike wants women to die of cervical cancer, not ovarian cancer. Mike, I apologize for saying you support the wrong kind of cancer.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

I guess I agree with most of the posters; Mitt hasn't really shown me anything to have earned the nomination, and the cash on hand number needs to be much more talked about. The number of donors is quite significant however, for two reasons: it represents a groundswell of support at the grass roots (I suspect most of those are Mormons who are big-time tithers), and if they have kicked in less than the max, it represents a well to go to in the future (Obama is the poster child for this - he's got more donors than HRC and they've contributed far less than the max on average).

BTW, I have no prob with some rich person who wants to donate - that's free speech in my opinion, with no conflict of interest issues that supposed campaign finance reform was supposed to address. As someone else said, it won't matter much, as Forbes indicated (and as Bloomberg will find out if he tries it).

Posted by: JD | July 25, 2007 4:22 PM | Report abuse

As a conservative, I see where Mike's comming from w/a couple of his points. Liberal social programs have a long history of failure, but they continue to be pursued. I believe this is to gain votes of select groups. (Republicans certainly do this in their own sphere unfortunately) Also, "the debate is over," statement is premature. I believe humans contribute in a meaningful way to global warming, but my level of certainty is low. There are many respected scientists on both sides of this issue (Al is not one of them), and those who don't believe as I do have foolishly been excluded by the MSM. The predicted effects of global warming change weekly, suggesting more work needs to be done to understand it. Calling either position fact is premature.

While I agree that some of Mike's stamements are unfair characterizations, his other posts have been substantive and fair.

As for Mitt, his burn rate is high, but it's fine. He has plenty of new money comming in and he will have no money problems through the primaries. If he wins the primaries he will be tough to beat in the general election for Democrats. The bigger worry for Mitt & other Republican candidates is the gap between Republican and Democrat contributions overall. If that continues into the general election, the Republicans will be in trouble.

Posted by: Slick-Willy | July 25, 2007 4:19 PM | Report abuse

There's a difference between "Democrats believe in global warming" and "Democrats ignore science that contradicts global warming". The way you presented those supposed Democratic beliefs makes them into insults, and distorts any truth that they may have once had.

Mike, defend your belief that girls should die from ovarian cancer. Defend your belief that we should elevate the Bible over the Constitution. Defend your belief that anyone with brown skin should be deported or killed. Those ARE the beliefs of your party, right?

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

As the Presidential race gains speed global poverty is an issue that needs to be critically addressed by all potential candidates. Too much time is being spent on a candidate's character and not enough on the issues. The United States has agreed to the Millennium Development Goals, plan that will put an end to global poverty by 2015. Unfortunately less than half of aid from the United States goes to the poorest countries where people earn less than $2 a day. Groups such as the Borgen Project are working to bring global attention to global poverty. For any candidate to receive recognition it is crucial that their foreign policy addresses these issues.

Posted by: Kat P | July 25, 2007 3:51 PM | Report abuse

AndyR makes a good point -Romney's campaign is burning through money so fast right now, it has started to become a red flag. If it weren't for his own extremely deep pockets, he'd be McCained by now.

This guy is really a manchurian candidate; just where did all that money come from? One has to wonder. At least McCain has more integrity than to blow all of his family's/wife's dough in a lifelong pursuit of political power.

(Maybe I'd like him more if he made a massive donation to the SPCA.)

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | July 25, 2007 3:48 PM | Report abuse

So let me get this straight

Democrats don't support abortions?
They don't subscribe to global warming?
They don't think evolution is irrefutable?
They don't want to socialize medicine?
They don't want to bring the troops home?

Just because you don't like the WAY I presented your beliefs doesn't mean they ARENT your beliefs.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Mike: "Look, if you can't defend your positions, or don't want to, then don't."

You're an ass. What you define as the Democratic Party's positions are about as close to the actual positions as you are to an intelligent person.

Posted by: Please, little boy, enough | July 25, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

What positions? Those ridiculous slurs aren't my positions, or the positions of any Democrats. Why should I defend them?

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Andy R,

You state that Romney only has 3 mil on hand check your math. Romney has 12 mil on hand. You are subtracting what he has donated himself.

Posted by: Ddustin | July 25, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Look, if you can't defend your positions, or don't want to, then don't.

And I would hope that in these 2 weeks on here that I have proven myself not to be a hate-mongerer. Sure, if you take that previous post alone, it doesn't appear that way.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I see. You're not some dumb conservative who repeats standard RNC talking points to bash Democrats. You just make posts as if you WERE a dumb conservative, and you repeat RNC talking points so the Democrats know why they're getting bashed. Makes perfect sense. Now explain why you didn't make a similar post mischaracterizing and bashing the Republicans.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Blarg -- it was structured that way so that you understand what the perceptions about your party are.

There a lot of things that don't make a lot of sense, and taken in their simplest form, look shocking and unbelievable.

I guess I could have included thsi explanation as an introduction; I surely didn't mean to offend you.

I really do not identify myself as a Republican, and in the younger half of my life I have found myself struggling to find an appropriate political identity.

I am simply sharing with you how rediculous the Democrats appear (on face). I wouldn't simply find a random blog to bash democrats - that would be mindless and too easy (and of course, it would be equally easy to do the same of the other side).

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Andy R -- good point about Romney. He has spent a lot of money, but probably out of necessity (many people still don't know his name). He was probably banking on continuing his lead in the fundraising.

Do you think once Thompson gets in for real Romney's wells will run dry and he will be forced to slow spending or donate to himself?

Regarding oversimplification, I would accuse many people of over-complicating arguments. I think this whole war can be summed up in a couple of phrases.

There is a decentralized, radical, and very real enemy out there.

They want to kill us in as large and indescriminate numbers as possible.

They cannot be negotiated with.

We must kill them before they kill us.

I would rather kill them in the middle east than kill them in our back yard.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 2:55 PM | Report abuse

It looks like Mitt Romney is just another rich "suit" trying to purchase his way into the White House. He does not represent anyone but the privileged few. What's more, he presents a new face for the deeply entrenched neo-con movement.

Posted by: LuLu Ford | July 25, 2007 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Mike, thanks for your response, in which you responded to my well-thought-out discussion of modern politics with a series of tired RNC talking points. Now I know that you're just here to bash Democrats, not to have any kind of intelligent discussion. I can safely ignore you now. Bye!

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Mike, you could just as easily say that Republicans:

Reject "Science" that does not fit with their religious superstitions.
Support "Science" that disproves Global Warming.

Reject "choice" to impose their morals and social mores on everyone. And they too -
Reject "choice" of a good doctor - they love the HMOs, remember? And the HMOs tell you who your doctor will be.

"Support" the troops by failing to adequately fund and supply them for nearly six years; also by failing to properly train them for a war of choice. (And there was plenty of time - remember, Bush had decided to go to war with Iraq shortly after 9/11. With a 15-month run-up, why do ALL U.S. soldiers NOT speak fluent Arabic?)
Ignore the genocide that is CURRENTLY taking place.

Bloat the government.
(don't have to change this one. Just remember, it was smaller even under Clinton. The biggest government we have had in recent memory has been under Republicans Reagan and Bush II.)
Take more of our money.
(Not yet, but the GOP has certainly run up FAR more debt.)
Establish, Protect, Maintain Power.
(don't have to change this one either. Thankfully, the country in the most recent election did not choose to allow the incompetent ones to remain in power.)
Emulate Failed Oligarchies.
Lose all wars.
(First of all, a "war" is fought against a foreign government. What we are engaged in now - in both Iraq and Afghanistan - are 'police actions / peacekeeping operations' - call them what you want, but they are not wars. With the exception of Korea and Vietnam - both fought against a defined political entity based in a certain location - the US has not been "at war" since Gulf War I.

Posted by: Bokonon | July 25, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

One problem I have with this article is how chris forgets to mention that Romney has raised 40+ million (including the 6 mil he donated to himself) but only has 2 or 3 million on hand. His burn rate is so high that he is going to have to donate 60 million just to get to march of next year. And even with all that he is still mired in single digits nationally.

And Mike, you can figure out alot about someone by what they say about people who disagree with them.
Some of us are openminded and try to understand the opposing positions, but then there are people like you that over-simplify and demonize the opposition to make yourself feel better. You can find those types on the fringe of both sides of every idealogical spectrum. And in my opinion people like that are virtually worthless.

Posted by: Andy R | July 25, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I didn't know posting a political opinion on a political blog was being a jerk.

I'm glad we have such overly-sensitive, most likely politically-correct non-thinking libs reading and getting their feelings hurt.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I applaud the efforts of people like you and bsimon, but really, responding to the likes of an idiot like Mike is such a waste of your valuable time. Or are you just trying to give him more opportunities to prove what a jerk he is? If so, keep up the good work!

Posted by: Blarg, stop wasting your time | July 25, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

just wanted to add that you are an idiot Chris. Have a nice day.

Posted by: dave | July 25, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Blarg -- appreciate your response. I do, however think that both parties can be summed up in very general terms. Maybe not a bumper sticker, but some overarching principles:


Support "Science" to disprove God.
Reject "Science" that disproves Global Warming.

Support "choice" to stop a beating heart.
Reject "choice" to find a good doctor.

"Support" the troops by "brining them home".
Ignore the genocide that will surely ensue.

Bloat the government.
Take more of our money.
Establish, Protect, Maintain Power.
Emulate Failed Socialist Systems.
Lose all wars.

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Romney can spend all his money if he wants, but he's still flipper to me.

Posted by: Greg in LA | July 25, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The Democratic Party doesn't stand for anything. Neither does the Republican Party. Individual politicians, and maybe small groups, can stand for particular policy goals. But when a party wants to represent approximately half the country, there's no way for it to have a single stance on most issues.

Democrats are generally pro-choice. That doesn't mean that every Democrat is pro-choice, but most are. Most Democratic politicians favor some form of universal healthcare, but they disagree on the specifics. I think nearly all Democrats are concerned about fighting global warming, but, again, they disagree on the best method to do so. There's certainly no agreement on gun control.

Don't act like Republicans are any different. What's the Republican position on Iraq? Most Republicans want to stay; Chuck Hagel and several other Republican senators want to withdraw. How about immigration? Bush and Tancredo certainly differ on that. Abortion? Ask Rudy Giuliani and Tom Coburn, and you'll get different answers.

It's possible to make general statements about the beliefs of the parties. (Democrats think that government exists to help people, Republicans tolerate government but believe it should be as small as possible.) But those statements are sure to be wrong much of the time. You can't sum up the ideology of a political party into a bumper-sticker slogan, and any attempt to do so is just dishonest.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Kerry was never meant to be a great candidate. Most people who didn't vote for Bush would have voted for a ham sandwhich over Bush. Kerry didn't amount to much more than that.

If the Democrats want a shot at the White House, they need to put forth something meaningful, rather than just run as "The Anti-Bush" again, which will fail, again.

To any of you left-leaning posters out there, what, honestly, does the Democratic Party STAND FOR?

(I already know what it stands against.)

Posted by: Mike | July 25, 2007 1:53 PM | Report abuse

"I must disagree that Kerry was a poor nominee or a mediocre choice... look at who we ended up with, the worst U.S. president.... ever."

Kerry being a less bad alternative than his opponent does not mean Kerry was a good candidate. I wanted Kerry to defeat Bush, but I voted for Badnarak. If the 2008 candidates are merely new versions of tweedle dum & tweedle dumber, I will likely cast another 'wasted' vote.

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Romney's money is going to help him to the nomination (money never did much for Steve Forbes). The opposition research on Romney is just too easy. I believe that when the opposition starts running ads of Romney in his debates with Kennedy you'll see his numbers drop. Romney's a flip-flopper and all the money in his considerable bank account can't buy him a spine or an honestly held political position.

I hate to do this, but I have to reply to the Amtrak basher. I take it every day for work (NorthEast Corridor). Its always on time and always full. The trains are clean, the conductors professional, and its an all-around more pleasant experience than air travel. Would I take it to the mid-west (from Boston) no. To DC or NY? In a heartbeat. The Acela rocks. Nuff said.

Posted by: Sean | July 25, 2007 1:38 PM | Report abuse

bsimon, I must disagree that Kerry was a poor nominee or a mediocre choice.

It was the Bush campaign's slimy Swiftboat tactics that stampeded public opinion, and look at who we ended up with, the worst U.S. president.... ever.

Posted by: Truth Hunter | July 25, 2007 1:27 PM | Report abuse

It's absolutely ridiculous that a candidate can donate as much money as he wants to his own campaign. If campaign finance laws apply to all other donations, they should apply to self-donations as well.

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2007 1:20 PM | Report abuse

The Public Trough Amtrak Subsidy Preserved The House on Tuesday rejected moves by conservatives to cut taxpayer subsidies for Amtrak as backers of the money-losing passenger railroad cemented their position in the Democratic Congress

Leave it to the Libs to support a losing effort

Posted by: talk about give-aways | July 25, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Truth Hunter writes
"Kerry won in Iowa because he appeared to be the best electable grownup of the bunch."

And I suspect primary voters will make a similarly poor decision this time around, based on the same poor logic. In 2004 the thought was that Kerry's Vietnam experience would give him enough 'war creds' to convince voters to support him over Bush. This time around, the characteristic will be different, but both parties' primary voters will guess what the primary issue for swing voters is and nominate the candidate that they imagine best attracts them. Its a ludicrous process that is bound to produce mediocre nominees.

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2007 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Romney's sole purpose in life seems to be winning the nomination. Once he was elected in MA he pretty much forgot about governing. His statements are full of platitudes and photo ops. I don't think there's much there there.

Posted by: Peter | July 25, 2007 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure about the premise of CC's argument, that Kerry's infusion of money allowed him to flood the Iowa airways just before the caucuses and thus go on to victory.

I really think Kerry won because of electability, and weak opponents although the advertising surely helped.

In first-in-the-nation Iowa, by the time of the caususes voters are so saturated with campaign ads, phone calls and so on, they have an almost negative effect, and at best are just tuned out.

Kerry won in Iowa because he appeared to be the best electable grownup of the bunch.

Posted by: Truth Hunter | July 25, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

I hope Romney's wealth does not inhibit him from seeing how dire it is that we end poverty worldwide. In his campaign, it would be great to see something done about this issue of poverty. He of all people should understand the power of money and that we can use this power to do good in the world. It only takes 19 billion dollars to end starvation and malnutrition worldwide (it is little compared to the 340 billion spent on the war in Iraq) [ Borgen Project ]. I hope he address this.

Posted by: Erica | July 25, 2007 12:54 PM | Report abuse

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