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  Rich. Weird. Romney.
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ContributorForwardista 
Last EditedForwardista  Apr 23, 2012 09:53pm
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News DateTuesday, April 24, 2012 05:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionEverything you need to know about Willard Mitt Romney. An excerpt from Salon's new e-book, "The Rude Guide to Mitt"

Mitt Romney is weird. When the Obama reelection campaign early in the cycle made the mistake of indicating that its strategy would be to imply that Mitt Romney is weird by repeatedly telling Politico that it planned on calling Mitt Romney weird, Romney’s camp countered by causing a brief and not particularly sincere media brouhaha over whether “weird” is code for “Mormon.” Plenty of Americans think Mormons are weird, yes, but in this case, the simple fact is Mitt Romney is weird, entirely apart from his religion.

He seems incapable of natural conversation and frequently uncomfortable in his own skin. He’s simultaneously dorkily earnest and ingratiatingly insincere. He suggests a brilliantly designed politician android with an operating system still clearly in beta. He once tied a dog to the roof of his car and drove for hundreds of miles without stopping and some years later thought that was an endearing story. All video of him attempting to interact with normal humans is cringe-inducing, as a cursory YouTube search quickly demonstrates. (Martin Luther King Day, Jacksonville, Fla., 2008: Mitt poses for a picture with some cheerful young parade attendees. As he squeezes in to the otherwise all-black group, he says, apropros of nothing, “Who let the dogs out? Woof, woof!”) He seems to have been told that “small talk” is mostly made up of cheerfully delivered non sequiturs.

Every good Romney profile has a “Romney says something bizarre” moment. In Sridhar Pappu’s 2005 profile for the Atlantic, Romney produced a commemorative plate featuring the likenesses of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower, and announced: “Not only was Eisenhower one of my favorite presidents; when we became grandparents, you get to choose what the kids will call you. Some call you Papa. I chose Ike. I’m Ike, and Ann is Mamie.”
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