COMMENTARY | Make no mistake about it – the Republican primaries are only a dress rehearsal for the real dog-fight. The candidate, who earns the right to represent the Republican Party, while opposing President Obama in the election, will have to provide answers to both factual and alleged improprieties. Kid gloves are not part of a campaign and neither is thin skin.
Newt Gingrich has taken Romney to task for his behavior as a corporate raider while heading up Bain Capital. Romney claims that he has created jobs and his opponents are highlighting that many people lost their jobs as a result of Romney’s and Bain Capital’s actions. One of the better attacks is a 28-minute film titled “When Mitt Romney Came to Town.” A pro-Gingrich Super PAC (Political Action Committee), Winning Our Future, produced and released the film. The film revolves around four companies that Bain Capital took over and where the workers lost jobs and benefits, and lives destroyed. It sounds horrible but unfortunately not each and every company can be saved, will have a happy ending and in many cases, there will be individual suffering. Quite frankly, if Romney cannot defend himself against this file, then perhaps he simply does not deserve to be president.
Rick Perry has questioned Romney’s authenticity with regard to caring about the working class. He took exception when Romney claimed to have worried about losing his own job. Perry quipped that the only worry Romney had about pinks slips was running out of them. It will get some laughs but nobody, rich or poor, likes to be fired. For some the emotional pain is more than the financial.
Of course, there are some Republicans who feel that the level of attack is unwarranted and Rep. Michael Grimm, (R-NY), a Romney supporter, has suggested that the candidates back off. He thinks that Republicans using terms such as vulture capitalism will have a negative strategic effect on the party as a whole. The battle is only heating up, and once the Republicans have chosen a candidate, the attacks will begin in earnest. The Republicans do not have a monopoly on vitriol, and it is a huge prize that the players are going after.