Friday, July 27, 2012

Calculated Blowback: Did Romney Intend To Upset England?

The Official Logo for the Lodnon Oimplycs!

(The above is a "pirate logo" that's being used to mock the London Olympics 'Brand Police').

Romney made a few high profile "gaffes" at the kick-off of his world tour. The biggest was suggesting that London is "not ready" for the Olympics due to some shortages of staff and other issues. He also apparnetly disclosed a meeting with the head of MI6 which is, apparently, a no-no and he (maybe) forgot Ed Milbrand's name during his press appearance (calling the Labour party's leader by the name "Mr. Leader.") While this has provoked mockery from the English press and a few funny tweets probably the worst of it was a little return fire in the form of Cameron questioning Romney's own Olympic success story:
“We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities anywhere in the world,” Cameron noted. “Of course it’s easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere. Inevitably, you’re going to have challenges.”
What Do I Think?
I think there is at least a chance all this is calculated. Romney is no idiot and while he's as gaffe prone as Obama, this trip has been as carefully prepared for as anything he's ever done. Compare this to Obama's own high-risk world-tour back in '08. The 08 Team Obama pulled off a tricky multi-country tour with a tight schedule and thronging crowds. Those very same crowds made it into McCain attack ads showing Obama adored by foreign nationals.

I think Romney is interested in some of the reverse here. While I do doubt that he wanted the degree of push-back he got, the reality is that Team Romney (correctly, IMO) assesses that America doesn't much care about what's being said in overseas papers.
“No, the reality is, we’re not worried about overseas headlines. We’re worried about voters back here in America,” Jindal said. “I think the focus needs to continue to be on what’s happening here at home. That’s what’s important to voters.”
So I suspect this is a chance for Romney to look tough and "shoot straight" an highlight his own Olympic resume--what better way to do that than cast some (light) doubts on another countries attempt at the same?

No comments:

Post a Comment