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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Party of Two

Apparently no one told Mitt Romney he's so 2008.

Romney was one of the featured speakers at yesterday's kickoff of the Conservative Political Action Conference, ready to unveil Myth 3.0, someone less dependent on the red meat eaters who attend this conference.

But the reddest of the red staters were one step ahead of the man from Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, Utah and California, bestowing far more love and affection on his doppelganger, Sen. Scott Brown, R-Cosmo.
The attendees stomped and screamed at the appearance of the surprise guest who introduced Romney: Scott Brown. "I'm the newly elected Republican senator from Massachusetts," Brown said. "Let me just say that one more time. I am the Republican senator from Massachusetts."
The difference in receptions is a reflection of the trend noted by the Globe's Susan Milligan (in a Freudian slip?) that "the conservative movement has changed radically in a year."
Dave Smith, 57, praised Romney as one of the cornerstones of the American conservative movement. But he wondered whether Romney’s experience - being governor of Massachusetts and steering the 2002 Winter Olympics - would be seen as political baggage by activists eager for a less conventional leader.

“That almost looks establishment," said Smith, a law enforcement trainer in Oswego, Ill., who has not settled on a favorite for 2012. “One of the things he’s going to have to do is keep an emphasis on the grass roots."
The Mittser did try to keep up with the parade, decrying liberals as "neo-monarchists," a head scratcher that can only leaving me wondering if he really meant neo-Marxists. That, after all, the war cry for the CPAC set.

It's also worth noting the love in the room for another speaker, former Vice President Richard "Darth" Cheney, who elicited cries of "Run Dick, Run." No mention of a similar Romney shout-out.

The tone lends credence to the Phoenix's David Bernstein's Myth 3.0 theory, that Romney will need to run a northern strategy to win the 2012 nomination. But even that's not a sure thing.
“I don’t think he understands the philosophy of freedom that motivates the tea parties,’’ said Sean Ryan, a 29-year-old Boston Latin School teacher. “I haven’t really heard Romney speak eloquently about freedom and liberty.’’ Romney’s criticism of the Democrats’ health care proposal is disingenuous, he said, since as Massachusetts governor he signed a similar program that conservatives do not like.
Boston Latin School? I believe that's in Scott Brown Country.

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