Sunday, January 22, 2012

My Advice to Mitt Romney: Stay Soft

Guest Post by Angelo Dundee*

Everyone knows that controversy sells papers and air time.  And you can’t blame the media.  Ultimately, it’s the public’s unquenchable blood thirst for zingers, flubs and controversial sound bites that fuels the 24/7 news cycle.   So what happens when a presidential candidate refuses to play?  Well, he’s chastised for being “soft.”

Romney needs to ignore that criticism and keep his eye on the prize.  At the end of the day, Romney, or whoever the Republican nominee is, must sway not the extreme elements of the Republican base to win the presidency but, rather, those moderate Americans who voted for Barack Obama.   Romney certainly isn’t going to appeal to that middle if he gets dragged into a gutter fight with his Republican opponents or, for that matter, going too far in establishing his conservative bona fides. Basically, he needs to show himself just conservative enough to win the nomination.  And, just as importantly, he needs to show himself to be “presidential.”

For the most part, he’s done just that, avoiding the temptation of revenge by sound bite.   And, so far, it has paid off despite one bad round in South Carolina.  Like a boxing match, Romney needs to fight his fight.  It may have all the excitement of Ali’s rope-a-dope now, but, like Ali’s, it will prove the winning strategy in the end.

*Not really

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