Clarence Page: Moderate Mitt debates himself

BY CLARENCE PAGE Published: October 26, 2012
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Against those attacks Moderate Mitt, with his cherubic smile and late-night pitchman's hard sell, has been showing up since the first debate — just in time to appeal to the last small but crucial sliver of voters who remain, for some reason, undecided.

Since the remaining undecideds also tend to be the least ideological voters, they may even identify with Romney's flip-flops. After all, he sounds like he's undecided, too.

They also might appreciate his professed ability to work across ideological lines. Who better to break through Washington's partisan gridlock than a chameleon man?

Yet they should be wary of his boasts in his closing debate speech about working with the other party. “I was in a state where my legislature was 87 percent Democrat,” said Moderate Mitt. “I learned how to get along on the other side of the aisle. We've got to do that in Washington.”

But that contrasts sharply with the earlier Combative Mitt who bragged in a 2008 campaign ad about taking on his legislature. “I like vetoes,” he said. “I vetoed hundreds of spending appropriations as governor.” Indeed, he issued some 800 vetoes during his single term, according to FactCheck.org, and his state's legislature overrode “more than 700 of them.”

He did venture across the aisle from time to time, but he apparently didn't stick around long. He had a lot more Mitts to make. I can hardly wait to see which one shows up next.

TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES