Allred and client arriving at Canton courthouse, via Bernstein's cellphone.
I have just returned from beautiful Canton, Massachusetts, aka "the junction," home of BostonRob, and suddenly Ground Zero for a possible October Surprise, or the latest Gloria Allred circus, or both.
The scene is the Norfolk Family and Probate Court, and at issue is trial testimony given nearly two decades ago by one Mitt Romney of Belmont in the divorce of Staples founder Thomas Stemberg and Maureen Sullivan Stemberg.
A memorial to Marine Lance Corporal Nickolas
Schiavoni, made for his mother Stephany Kern by a casualty officer, at her home in Westerly, Rhode
[Updated: See below for Romney response to Huffington Post]
Appearing on ABC’s The
View this past Thursday, Ann Romney claimed that her husband, as governor
“went to every funeral” of fallen soldiers from the Commonwealth.
Hey, I know about that binder! And guess what -- Mitt Romney was lying about it.
From the rush transcript:
CROWLEY: Governor Romney, pay equity for women?
ROMNEY: Thank you. An important topic, and one which I learned a great
deal about, particularly as I was serving as governor of my state,
because I had the chance to pull together a cabinet and all the
applicants seemed to be men.
As someone who didn't live here at the time, can you please explain how
exactly Mitt Romney got elected as MA Governor? Looking at him now, he
just doesn't seem to have the ability to connect with people.
It's a fair question -- and as I have previously reported, the campaign became aware pretty early on that you can't make the electorate like Romney, so, as you imply, he had to somehow win without that connection with voters.
Update, 9/9/12: On Meet the Press, David Gregory asked Romney specifically about not mentioning Afghanistan, as opposed to not mentioning the troops -- an understandable choice, but one that regrettably makes it difficult to compare with his answer to Baier.
Mitt Romney chose to ignore my advice to not bother trying to get people to like him, and it sure looks like he made a bad move.
So far, polling suggests no more than a small "convention bounce," leaving the national race essentially tied going into this week's Democratic convention. If Obama gets just a decent bounce, of four or five points, that leaves Romney in a hole heading into the final two months.
Quick reactions to Ann Romney's convention speech:
--I totally wanted her to come out on Rafalfa. Oh well.
--After a bit of a nervous (but not bad) start, she was very good. Simple, solid, well-written speech, with some good lines, delivered in a talkie rather than speechy way. And, without coming on too strong so as to seem like she was trying to sell something not believable.
At a rally in Michigan today, Mitt Romney made a birth certificate joke, much to the pleasure of the audience. This is going to create a stir.
To me, it reinforces something I've been worrying about for months now: that Romney has no game plan for controlling the ugly side of the conservative base this fall.
You may recall that John McCain had some trouble with this four years ago.
In the current state of interplay between the institutional Republican Party and the movement-conservative marketplace, there turns out to be a highly specialized role that must be filled: the Team Rebel/Wise Simpleton of the House. That is Paul Ryan, who took over from Mike Pence of Indiana after the 2010 election.
This position is required, because the conservative base demands that Republicans act as though they are trying to do the things they promised to do -- balance the budget, dramatically reduce the size of government, rein in entitlement spending, and so on.
Harry Reid, who may have been reading my blog posts, has decided to advance the charge at breaching Mitt Romney's tax-return defenses. As you may have heard, Reid is claiming that Romney paid no income taxes at all for 10 years -- a bit of intel he heard from the tiny yellow space monkey who lives in his left ear.
Well, OK, Reid didn't actually cite the space monkey; he credited an unnamed "Bain investor," which is only slightly less credible.
I wrote about today eight months ago, in my "Year In Mitt" preview:
JULY 27, AUGUST 3: US ECONOMIC REPORTSOn
July 27, the federal government will release the GDP (Gross Domestic
Product) estimate for the second quarter of 2012; a week later comes the
July employment report. These will be the last two major gauges of the
country's economic health before Romney (assuming he's the nominee)
kicks off the fall campaign at his nominating convention.
There was a small, but potentially significant development in the Mitt Romney tax return story yesterday, and to help explain its potential significance I have written a little play for you about a guy and his girlfriend:
Girlfriend: Where were you last night? Guy: I'm not going to tell you, it's a private matter.
Girlfriend: Where were you last night?
Guy: I'm not going to tell you, it's a private matter.
The Phoenix's David Bernstein spoke exclusively with NBC News's Politics Nation last night to unveil the juiciest twist in his new investigation into Mitt Romney's "shadow years" inside and outside of Bain. In this week's issue -- online now and on newsstands tomorrow -- Bernstein breaks the story of Romney's investments in a Bermuda casualty insurance company called Endurance Specialty.
Last week, the national media began to pick up on David Bernstein's 2007 investigation into Romney's shadow years at Bain while he was running the Salt Lake City Olympics -- and now the media is also beginning to pick up on another line of Bernstein's inquiry, which concerns potential conflicts of interest that Romney admitted to while he was in Salt Lake City.
I was being interviewed on another network at the time, so I didn't initially see Mitt Romney's interview on CNN tonight, the first to air of five he did trying to shoot down the Bain Shadow Years story.
So I only just now learned that he said this, when asked about having attended board meetings with Staples between 1999 and 2002: