If DHL Is Bad...

Barack Obama's campaign is hitting John McCain hard on McCain's involvement in facilitating the DHL merger that is ultimately leading to massive layoffs in Ohio.

If it has legs, it should pretty much kill Mitt Romney's chances at the VP slot, and would prove the point that I and others have been trying to make in that regard.

You see, if McCain can be blamed a little for the Ohio layoffs, Romney can be blamed A LOT for, say, the AmPad layoffs in Indiana that Ted Kennedy used against him in their 1994 Senate contest. (Say, weren't the AmPad layoffs in Indiana, which is one of Obama's top target states? Why, yes they were.)

Many pundits have been glibly saying that since the economy became the big voter issue, a businessman like Romney would be a boon to the GOP ticket, making up for McCain's admitted intellectual weakness in that area.

But in a political campaign about the economy, businessman Romney is what you might call a "target-rich environment." He made hundreds of millions of dollars for himself and his wealthy cohorts by buying companies, stripping them to the bone, and selling off the carcass. (OK, that's not how they describe it on their web site; but it would sure look that way in an attack ad.) Jobs? Workers? Not an important column on the spreadsheet.

More broadly, Romney is just not on the middle- and working-class worker's side in the economic struggle, and there's plenty from his life story, his Bain career, and his governorship to use against him. (Cue footage of Romney campaigning in 2002 promising that he would use his access to CEOs and boardrooms to get companies to move to Massachusetts, while a scroll shows headlines of companies leaving the state, and job numers declining, during his years in office.)

Romney never got hit as a cold-blooded fatcat in the primaries, because they were Republican primaries -- you're supposed to be on the side of capital against labor. The general election is another story: McCain has to win regular-family votes in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Indiana. If DHL hurts McCain, Romney would KILL him.

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