Leslie Cook

An Open Letter to Mitt Romney

In In My Opinion..., Politics on November 15, 2012 at 10:01 am

Hi Mitt,

I’ve been thinking a lot about you in the past week. I know how hard it is to lose. Most of us have had to do it at least once in our lives and it can be very hard to deal with. When we lose, we can question everything we believe in and wonder whether the paths we chose were the right ones. Or we can go a different way. We can walk the path that you seem to be walking, blaming the loss on the winner who obviously cheated in some way, duping the voters, that 47% who are always looking for a handout. This morning, I read that you told your donators that you think you lost because the winner provided “gifts” to minorities, young voters, and women. Basically, Mitt, you’re saying that your contender bought the election. That is an interesting theory, Mitt. Here are the reasons that I think you’re wrong.

  1. Blaming your loss on actions designed to help Americans seems to me to be a no-win argument. Yes, the President had the big advantage of being the President. That’s because he won an election 4 years ago against one of your colleagues, John McCain. Yes, I suppose you can blame the President for actually doing stuff during his time in office. Things like trying to provide healthcare for everyone in the country, something, I must add, that your side fought against. Yes, the President did help the auto industry, support gays in the military, help students with reduced interest rates, and support the dream act when it was blocked by your colleagues in the Congress. I suppose that if those are the gifts you’re talking about, you’re right. The President bribed the electorate by doing his job which is to help make this country a better place for everyone, not just the 53% that you thought you had on your side.
  2. I think your side underestimates the power of positive thinking. Mitt, we know we had a bad time the last 4 ½ years. We’ve been there. We’ve lived it. I’d like to thank you for reminding me over and over again what a mess we’ve been in. You did neglect to bring up how we got into this mess. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t because Americans chose Senator Obama for President. I think it had something to do with the misguided policies over the previous 20 years, culminating in a stock market crash and a real estate bust. That aside, the thing you didn’t point out was that things were looking up. Yes, unemployment isn’t where we wanted it to be, but it was better. Those corporations that you love so much are making profits. Yes, gas prices are higher than they were in 2008. Why? Because there are more people working and drawing on our gas supply. Bad for my wallet, but a good sign for the economy. Bottom line, we would have liked to hear you say that we will come back, that things are better for all of us. We don’t want you to tell us that the world will come to an end unless we elect you, Mitt. That just doesn’t fly with us.
  3. Your campaign seems to write off 50% of the American population. Despite what your side thinks, minorities, youth, and women do exist and apparently we do vote. So to write us off or, when you do talk to us, to treat us like 2nd class citizens is just plain stupid. Your party tends to speak to white males, which worked in the past, wasn’t as affective in this election and will probably not work in the future. Like it or not, the nation is much more diverse that you’d planned for. Republications will have to do a better job of addressing the issues of a wider group of voters and stop assuming that they won’t show up to vote. We do vote and, right now, we’re not voting for you.
  4. Your side lied a lot and we did notice. Ok, to be truthful, both sides lied. Both sides avoided answering direct questions by the voter and by reporters acting on our behalf. I know that you think that we won’t understand if you actually answer a question with words that aren’t sound bites, but we’re really not that stupid. Or maybe you can learn to use small words to explain your views.

Mitt, I know these are tough times for you. Your party is turning against you and blaming you for the loss. The fact is, the Republican party didn’t do itself any favors by supporting extremists, alienating working people, and being obstructionist for the past few years. You haven’t become the party of “No” without reason. I also know that most of the Republicans I know are good, decent people, as I’m sure you are. Some of them are a little fearful of change, and the country has changed a lot in the past few years. That can be scary. But to encourage scapegoating (as the Arizona immigration laws do), to try and limit access to the ballot box (see Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio, etc), and to support or stand by and say nothing as the more extreme members of your party alienate 47% of the population isn’t the right response. Mitt, I’m hoping that you and your party learn from what the voting public is trying to tell you. I’m hoping that, instead of 4 more years of “No”, that we all learn to compromise and work together. That’s what the American people really want. Mitt, as a leader in your party, you can help to set a more positive tone for our country. I hope you take the high road and work with the opposition to make this a better country. After all, that is what you say you want. It’s what we all want…a better American.

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