|By G. Michael Dobbs|
After much thought and after being with Governor Mitt Romney at a recent press event, I'm launching a new movement here in the fair Commonwealth of Massachusetts "Democrats for Romney for President."
I think Romney has got what it takes to be a Republican presidential candidate. He's tall and good-looking in an upper class way. He wears a suit well. He purports to be "a man of the people." He sounds sincere when he speaks. He knows how to make a political insult sound like a joke. He has served as a governor for one term without many tangible accomplishments. He will allow political dogma to stand in the way of legislative accomplishment.
He is confident in his leadership abilities to leave the state frequently. He is also sure that he really doesn't need to get to know the members of the Legislature, other than fellow Republicans. He's happy to remind people of his greatest accomplishment so far of "saving" the Salt Lake Olympics.
He can stay "on point" with reporters and is willing to answer a variety of questions with the same answers. He doesn't make himself accessible to the press unless he can control the circumstances.
He knows how to emphasize issues that are smoke and mirrors such as gay marriage and how to talk around ones of real substance. He knows how to make people into villains - such as the Legislature.
Yup, he seems to have what it takes these days to hit the dusty campaign trail. And as long as his political ambitions can take him out of this state, I'm a happy guy.
If this fails I'll try a "Bring Mitt Back to Utah" effort.
I'm dreading the Fourth of July not because I'm unpatriotic; not because it will probably to a hot and muggy day; and not because I don't like cookouts or road trips.
Nope, I'm not looking forward to it because of my neighbors who spend hundreds of dollars on their own fireworks display.
During the day we'll have folks with parties in the neighborhood at which they will drag out of their homes no exaggeration here, I've seen them do it professional club style speakers. These things issue forth vibrations that can sterilize a bull at 100 feet.
Needless to say we have to combat this assault by turning up the television to the point of ear-bleed.
After a day of listening and feeling music we hate, we then have to contend with several hours of amateur fireworks.
My favorite moment occurred several years back when I couldn't help but hear a father trying to teach his young son how to hold a sparkler. The kid was scared and crying, and Dad was unrelenting. "You hold it at this end," he yelled.
Yes, shooting off fireworks is a ton of fun, but in an urban area there are real safety concerns. Several summers back, one Springfield woman had her house catch on fire thanks to a bottle rocket shot onto her roof.
Of course, the police will not answer a call about fireworks unless there's an injury or a fire.
What I like most is the irony. On this day we honor our freedom, some people make sure we have no choice but to celebrate it their way.
You know the drill. These are my opinions alone. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or to 280 N. Main St., East Longmeadow, MA 01028.