For the better part of a year, everyone but Mitt has been talking about “Anybody but Mitt.” As insults go, this one could hardly be more personal. Now, as his campaign segues from the hunt for votes among registered Republicans to the quest for “likability” among nonpartisan Americans, Romney has the opportunity to let on that he can actually hear the loud indignities that he pretends to ignore. What could be more humanizing than that? If only there was a way to put the words “Anybody but Mitt” past Mitt’s lips.
So, as pundits turn their full attention to who might win the GOP Veepstakes, Mitt might carve out a winning moment of his own. Here’s a thought: what if the presumptive Republican nominee found the right place and podium to deliver remarks about his presumptive running mate? Maybe something like this:
“My fellow Americans, as it becomes increasingly clear that I will be my party’s nominee for president of the United States, now’s the time to begin the process of choosing a running mate. Having carefully reviewed the constitutional requirements to serve as vice president, there is only one thing we know for certain about this person. And so today I am here to formally announce the initiative that others in my party began many months ago on my behalf: Operation Anybody but Mitt.
“Here are a few other clues we have deduced about this person who is not Mitt Romney.
- He or she has never been the former CEO of Bain Capital nor was this person primarily responsible for the astounding success of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics.
- Not-Mitt Romney is probably not from Utah and unlikely to be affiliated with any Utah-based religious institutions.
- Not-Mitt Romney insists that family pets always be carried in the passenger section of the car and is of the opinion that the trees in Michigan grow to an imperfect height.
- Known for a bold vision for rebuilding and restoring America to the principles that made us exceptional, Not-Mitt Romney has been likened to the beloved building blocks of our collective youth: Legos. (No Etch a Sketch moment here!)
- Mrs. Not-Mitt-Romney owns a single American-made vehicle which may or may not be a Cadillac.
- Not-Mitt Romney has never been governor of Massachusetts. Even if this person had been governor of Massachusetts, there is no way that he or she could have been as severely conservative as the real Mitt Romney.
- Because this person is not Mitt Romney, my running mate will also decline to release Mitt Romney’s full tax returns.
- And finally, if Not-Mitt Romney launched a statewide health-care plan, that plan might have been the model for what is now known as Obamacare—because the real Mitt Romney’s health-care plan was not! We must repeal Obamacare!
- In addition to not being Mitt Romney, my running mate will also not be Joe Biden. If he were, whose ass would he kick in the vice-presidential debate?
“As for specific names of potential running mates—names like Marco Rubio, Rob Portman, Paul Ryan, Chris Christie, or others—all I can say is that every one of the potential candidates on my short list will undergo a series of genetic tests in order to determine conclusively that they are not Mitt Romney.
“No, we may not know this person’s name—but we know what name it is not! And I believe that Not-Mitt Romney will be a truly great vice-presidential candidate. Working together, Not-Mitt Romney and I will restore this country to the promise and the principles that made it the hope of the earth. Not-Mitt Romney and I don’t want to transform America, we want to restore America!
“Also, you may be interested to know that I have taken a first step in identifying the person who will be running my Vice-Presidential Search Process. His name is Not-Dick-Cheney.”
Remember: in politics, things are only as bad as the stuff you can’t joke about. See bold-faced topics above for a list of things Mitt needs to find a way to start joking about if he is to earn the kind of laughter that will help him in the campaign ahead.