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The Awe and the Awkward of Mitt Romney's Speech

by Eric S. Peterson
- Posted // 2012-08-30 -

Romney delivered his speech in true robotic fashion: awkwardly in talking about human feelings, and like a cold, calculating, campaign killbot when attacking President Barack Obama’s record.

Try as he might, Romney’s delivery of his fateful nomination speech ranged from Chuck-E-Cheese-animatronically compassionate to plain ol’ Terminator-mean. But if nothing else, when Romney challenged Obama’s record, he delivered some lines with the kind of brutal efficiency that would make a slaughterhouse robot wince.


I know it’s customary to open a talk by acknowledging the talk of the running mate, but right out of the gate, Romney spoke of Rep. Paul Ryan like he was introducing his fiancé for the first time to his family.

“By my side I,’ve chosen a man with a big heart from a small town.”

Geesh, what happened to defending the institution of marriage?

As Romney’s hard drive continued to warm up, he started by speaking of Obama’s first term and then delivered this one with facial configuration set to 90 percent “earnest:”

“I wish President Obama had succeeded because I want America to succeed.”

Which is why he’s been campaigning nonstop since he lost the nomination in 2008.

Then he gave a shout out to recently departed astronaut Neil Armstrong.

“God bless Neil Armstrong. And tonight ,that American flag is still on the moon and I don’t doubt for a second that Neil’s spirit is with us.”

I know there’s nothing wrong with that, but I could have sworn he nearly blurted out that he didn’t doubt “Neil’s spirit is guarding the moon from the Chinese” Almost!

Romney then took a Stuart Smalley detour

“You know, if every child could go to sleep feeling wrapped in the love of their family and God’s love, this world would be a far more gentle and better place.”

Or wrapped in jobs perhaps?

Then Romney told a story about how his father gave his mother a rose every day -- which is surely an amazing testament to true love. But the way Romney presented the line about how the interruption in this routine is how his mother found out about his father’s death was delivered almost like a fun fact.

“Every day, dad gave a rose on her bedside table. That’s how she found out what happened on the day my father died.”

From “aww” to “agh!” in .6 seconds.

Awesome and Awkward:

There was an overlap between awkward and awe-inspiring putdowns of the night and that’s when Romney stuck it to Obama’s environmental pledges. This zinger was delivered with perfect comedic timing.

“Obama promised to slow the rise of the oceans and heal the planet. My promise is to help you and your family.”

It got a huge reaction from delegates and put things in perspective for citizens hurting from a moribund economy. But in hindsight, maybe the ocean’s-rising bit wasn’t as well received by the Republicans in New Orleans whose homes were washed out by hurricane Isaac yesterday.

Just Awesome

Despite awkwardness about matters involving “feelings,” Romney had some hits that were pure, unadulterated awesome as far as political punches go.

“In America, we celebrate success; we don’t apologize for success”

Suck it, occupiers!

Then came the foreign-policy gut punch. Romney cited Obama for throwing Israel “under the bus” and for promising to be more flexible with Russia “after” the election. This in reference to a gaffe Obama had in March where he told Russia’s President Dmitri Medvedev that he would have more flexibility in negotiating with Russia after Obama wins reelection. To which Romney delivered this one-two.

“Under my administration, our friends will see more loyalty and Mr. Putin will see less flexibility and more backbone.”


But the message that hit relentlessly again and again throughout the night was jobs. Romney threw this attack in bunches of punches. Robotic? Yes, but the flurry of “jobs” punches Mitt “Rock ‘em, sock ‘em” Romney threw landed every time -- especially this one:

“It doesn’t take a government commission to tell this country what it needs. What Americans need is jobs, a lot of jobs.”

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Post a comment
Posted // August 31,2012 at 07:05

Eric Peterson, you are a blind bigot unable to see TRUTH through your distorted cataract of liberism! Get a real job, Eric--you have no talent or value in journalism.  The cancer of your soul pollutes everything that comes from your pen. . . .

David M. Gehlhausen

Celebration, FL

NOTE:  Since you don't like my comments, you distort the words on the publication screen beyond recognition--typical of distorted journalism! This is my 6th attempt to publish my text.  You're so afraid of the truth that you run from controversy.  What a coward!


Posted // August 31,2012 at 06:49

First let's start with I don't think Mitt Romney will be a good President at all because I think he will do what he has done in the past.   Look out for his millionaire and billionare friends and send more jobs oversees or cut jobs.   Even in his speech he talks about his family before the Country.   I think the well being of the country will not be his priority but making money is.   Don't get me wrong I want too make money but if it causes other people to lose money or their jobs then I would rather earn less for now.


Posted // August 31,2012 at 06:59 - Well we choose not to go back to the era of war and lies by your republican warriors. Ask your congressmen and women who blocked every initiative he has for thier political reason. They are responsible and are accountable for all the failureWe will elect him for four more years and move forward. Well said writer. Keep enlighting us.


Posted // August 31,2012 at 06:48

When we want real change, we will elect new people at all levels not just the top.   Romney hasn't convinced me he can make a difference or that he understands what the average person is going through.   The money these two campaigns are spending to bad mouth each other could be better spent helping to make our world a better place.


Posted // August 31,2012 at 06:26

sounds to me  like this writer is concerned that  obama is going to lose to this so called attack bot.  


Posted // August 31,2012 at 06:20

I am shocked to find out that so many in the media seem to have seen a different speech last night!


Well, no. . . it was very hard to hear the speech at all since most talking heads in the media industry spent their time talking to each other rather than watching anything on the stage!  I tried FoxNews, NPR, NBC, etc. . . . and I settled on C-SPAN.


Thanks goodness for C-SPAN!


Not only was it a wonderful speech, the crescendo of speeches over the last 3 nights, and on each night, was amazing.   The testemonials from real people, the images of the family and their roots, it is so clear that this guy is down to earth.


I am a family man, 65, 4 adult children, 5 grandkids, advanced degree, decades of experience in computers/telecommunications, background in physics and philosophy. . .


THIS IS A NO BRAINER ELECTION!  . . . anyone who rewards someone for 4 years of failure as defined by the individual's own promises, has no brain.


R&R seem to be family men as opposed to professors, but the professiors have been totally wrong about everything this past 4 years.


We cannot reward failure, else we get more of it.


Vote hope and a chance at real change, vote R&R!


Posted // August 31,2012 at 11:06 - www. politifact. com will set you free, Karl.