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Thursday, November 27th, 2014

In Comments About His Wife’s Horse, Romney Shows Why Americans Just Don’t Like Him

Ann Romney and her horse, Rafalca

For those Republicans who simply can’t understand why the public has failed to embrace Mitt Romney and why President Obama continues to enjoy much higher likability ratings, I offer to you exhibit A: Romney’s answer on NBC when asked about his wife’s horse competing in the Olympics.

Rather than talking about the family being proud or excited about this special moment, the Republican presidential challenger instead threw his wife Ann under the bus and pretended he barely knew anything about her horse—whose name is Rafalca, by the way—and its big Olympic moment.

“I have to tell you, this is Ann’s sport,” he said, preferring to not even say the word “dressage”—which is a French word meaning “training” and sometimes described as horse ballet.

“I’m not even sure which day the sport goes on,” Romney said. “She will get the chance to see it; I will not be watching the event. I hope her horse does well.”

So let me get this straight—your family has invested probably millions in dancing horses, supposedly as a way to help Ann treat her multiple sclerosis, “her horse” is going to compete in the globe’s most prestigious event, and we’re supposed to believe you don’t know anything about it? The subject never came up at the family dinner table or in the marital bedroom? Really, Mitt?

And even worse, if we accept that Rafalca the horse is completely Ann’s deal and Mitt knows nothing about it, the guy isn’t even interested in going to watch his wife’s horse compete at an Olympics he’s already going to be attending?

Clearly he’s afraid that if the public sees him at a horse dancing competition, we will suddenly be reminded: Oh yeah, Mitt’s rich—I almost forgot until I saw him at the Olympic dressage event!

The Romney campaign doesn’t seem to understand a fundamental fact about the American electorate: Americans don’t hate rich guys, Americans hate liars. Rich guys trying to pretend they aren’t rich, acting like they are the same as the rest of us. That’s being fake, a fraud, and we can spot it from a mile away. We don’t want the existence of your money thrown in our face, but if we don’t see it we’re not going to forget it’s there.

Take a look at the American Senate. Nothing but rich guys. A fraternity that provides definitive proof that Americans vote for rich guys all the time. In fact, I would contend that we actually PREFER to vote for rich guys. This is a nation that tends to lionize the very wealthy—Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Donald Trump, P Diddy—believing that they must have some special stuff the rest of us mere mortals don’t have.

Let’s take a look at New York City, for example. For seemingly like the last two decades, one of the most liberal cities in the nation has been run by an incredibly rich guy, Michael Bloomberg. In fact, Mitt, he’s even richer than you. A lot richer. But the thing about Bloomberg, one of the reasons New Yorkers keep electing him again and again, is he’s comfortable being rich. He doesn’t seem to mind if you know that he happens to be a billionaire. He doesn’t try to hide it—like some people I know. If Bloomberg wants to spend his leisure time at the Metropolitan Opera or the New York City Ballet, he’s gonna go to the opera and ballet. He’s not going to pretend he’d rather be at a Knicks game—you know, like regular guys.

Something tells me that if Romney were mayor of New York, he’d sneak into the opera wearing a fake nose and a mustache—while the next day we’d see him front and center at the Rangers hockey game, clutching a beer he doesn’t really want to drink.

—Nick Chiles

About Nick Chiles

Nick Chiles, Editor-in-Chief of AtlantaBlackStar, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and New York Times bestselling author. He has written or co-written 13 books and won over a dozen major journalism awards during a journalism career that brought him to the Dallas Morning News, the Star-Ledger of New Jersey and New York Newsday, in addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief of Odyssey Couleur travel magazine.

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    Not so much dishonesty as it is that the guy's just not comfortable in his own shoes. After 60-odd years on this earth, during every second of which he's been a child of privilege, the man's jockeys still chafe while he's at home alone watching a game of a Sunday afternoon.

    Maybe it's not that he's inauthentic. Maybe there never has been a "there" there.

    (Hmmm…Nuclear bomb launch codes. Existential crisis. Not so good and idea to risk mixing the two.)

  2. Karl Baba says:

    It's only blindness caused by hatred of Obama, or the greed of an investment banker, that could lead a person to not recognize that Romney standard of human decency is low, his character is flawed, and he's not the kind of person you want running the country.

    • With his jabs at England, I don't want to know what he'll say to Israel and North Korea.

    • Jared Rose says:

      He's definitely a tool, but so is Obama to me. I'll be voting for Gary Johnson

    • I'll be voting Ron Paul and if he isn't on the ticket then Gary Johnson it is.

    • And America begins to learn the merits of a 3 party system. As a Canadian I can tell you it's not perfect (or even good: 35 per cent of the country rules the 65), but compared to Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-Dickweed…

    • Guys, no, if you don't want Romney in then vote Obama. It's a great thing to want to vote in line with your ideals, it really is, but Johnson or Paul are realistically not going to win. All it's going to do is split the vote and give Romney the presidency.

    • Ian Mason The three party system isn't perfect :) , but at least elections are based on what gets passed or not and not a strict schedule like America has.

    • But Obama is just as bad. I don't care if Ron Paul doesn't win. If enough people vote for him in spite of everything then the media won't be able to ignore him like they always do. If Ron doesn't win we're screwed for the next for years and he probably won't. Instead of voting for the lesser of to evils (which is just an expression seeing as they are equally evil) I'm looking at the bigger picture and am doing my part to get a good president. Even if it takes 4 more years. I am voting for Ron Paul even if I have to write him in and I hope you all do the same. Who knows maybe we can even beat the odds and get him in this year.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      Zach Fortier ron paul is even worse than romney why would anyone sane vote for that guy

    • Nick Goddamnbatman I actually was going to do that at first but that's what they want. No more two party crap for me choosing between a giant douche or a shit sandwich.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      so you're going to pick the guy who is twice as bad as either of them zach? the massively racist, homophobic guy who's ideas for the economy are universally denounced by actual economists as absolutely terrible and destructive?

    • Kathryn Brodrick says:

      A vote for Gary Johnson or Ron Paul is a vote for Republicans. Good luck with that.

    • I don't know much about Johnson but Ron Paul is only a republican because the way the system works it is impossible to get far without associating with on or the other. A vote for Ron Paul is a vote for the constitution. He never votes against it. The government has gotten too big. It no longer follows the rules set in place by our forefathers. Right now he's the only man willing and capable of making the major downsizing necessary of putting this country back on the right track.

  3. Max Bartlett says:

    So now they support slavery? They've taken Sarah Jessica Parker into captivity!

  4. Well, and we don't even hate liars. Only bad ones.

  5. Fine article, but it's ridiculous to assert that attending the MET Opera requires more wealth than going to a Knicks game.

  6. well, actually I don't think his religion allows him to drink beer, but yeah, I agree w/ just about everything else.

  7. I see a TON of anti-Obama sentiment coming from the Republicans, but there's a distinct lack of support for Mitt. I have yet to have one of them tell me why I should vote for him.

    • Anonymous says:

      He's white!

    • That's because there isn't any reason. Republicans will support him because he's republican just like democrats will support Obama because he's a democrat. It doesn't matter that he's just as bad as Obama.

    • LOL. and that's the primary reason why many white people will vote for him… because he's an "old white guy". Personally, I've had enough of old white guys running things.

    • Hey! I'm white and I'm sure as hell not voting for Mitt because he always seems to take to steps backwards! I voting for OBAMA!!!

    • You don't know if he's just as bad as Obama until he gets a chance to show the country. We know how bad Obama is, so why would anyone even think of giving him another chance? Take the deficit as one of MANY examples. He said he would cut it in half by the third year of his first term. He not only didn't but it in half, he actually grew it. EPIC FAILURE.
      Next!

    • @Scott Schafer I can know it. He's the same as Obama who's the same as Bush. If he wasn't the republicans wouldn't have tried so hard to make sure he wins the candidacy. They don't want change. They're profiting off how things are now. The rep. and dem. argue over little differences but in the end it's always more wars, more taxes, more restrictions, more government. People always talk about which one is the lesser of two evils but they're the same evil in a different wrapper. The constitution was meant to protect us from our government, to keep them from taking away our freedoms and they're wiping they're asses with it. We need someone who will downsize our government, return all our troops home where they belong, and will go back to following the constitution.

    • becassue he has no clue how business actually funtions, he is an idiot (57 states, is he still looking for the others there are many gaffs, this is just top of mind) he has zero regard for the basis of our countries values,. but if you are looking for one reason to vote for Mitt its becasue he is not BO….the lesser of two evils.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Nah. These days we pretty much, straight up, hate rich guys, but we assume that they're fake, lying, frauds who will do everything they can to insure we never get our egalitarian paws on any of their money. The ire doubles around a sociopath like Romney who hasn't a clue about what it's like not being disgustingly rich.

  9. Adrian-Ryan Acala says:

    Steve Jobs' death is proof he is a mortal.

  10. Did the likeability ship sailed when the dog strap to the top of a car for hours story broke. It did for me at least!

  11. I didn't even see this as Mitt distancing himself from his wealth, I saw it as a despicable lack of interest in his own family. If the guy doesn't really care about his own wife, how much do we think he cares about the American people?

  12. Anonymous says:

    I'll pick Ron Paul over Romney or Obama.

  13. You may be right about Mitt here Nick, but a lot of women are in his wifes shoes. I'm a horseman also and often train-ride with friends. I know a lot of horse people, and there are a lot of relationships where the wife is the horse person, and the husband is not. These husbands often barely tolorate their wifes hobby and know nothing about horses and don't want to. I don't know why that is, because horses are awesome animals and are great pets if you treat them right.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Maybe that Mitt thinks in his base, they will think of him as less of a man if he's interested in something called "horse dressage." I'm assuming the majority of Americans don't know what the sport is or what it entails, so it isn't the rich aspect of it, it's the "horse dressage" sounds like something gay men would do and 'I want to show you all how macho I am by not even supporting my wife who does it. That's how NOT into it I am.'

    • It's just "dressage" and for many many years it was one of the manliest things a man could do. It is actually descended from the training routines used for cavalry horses. I don't understand it (my sister trains dressage horses) but it's definitely not an "unmanly" thing, at least not in my eyes.

    • It has the word "dress" in it. GAAYYYYYYYY cries the american public… At least that's probably what he believes will happen

  15. You may be right about Mitt here Nick, but a lot of women are in his wifes shoes. I'm a horseman also and often trail-ride with friends. I know a lot of horse people, and there are a lot of relationships where the wife is the horse person, and the husband is not. These husbands often barely tolerate their wifes hobby and know nothing about horses and don't want to. I don't know why that is, because horses are awesome animals and are great pets if you treat them right. (edited to fix a spelling error).

    • Susan Hildinger Hoerner says:

      Yeah, but weekending isn't the same as an entry into the Olympics…

    • I read the article about Mitts dog. I have mixed feelings. One one hand, it's not something I would do as my dogs are family and sleep in my bed, so they ride inside my truck with me no matter what. On the other hand, I have good friends whose dogs often ride in the back of their pickup trucks with no leash with their heads into the wind the entire time and seem to love it. So dunno about Mitts dog at the time. Dunno about it pissing either… maybe Mitt didn't stop often enough. I know my Shadow can hold it for over 9 hours, whereas my Crystal can only hold it about six, heh.

    • Ya, the Romneys behavior is odd to be sure. They don't seem "real". Love 'em or hate 'em the Romneys should be proud of their pets and be proud one is going to be in an Olympic event. Mitts comments about it are just more Romney weirdness. Has there ever been a politician who flip flops so often? Lies so much? Puzzles the hell out of me.

    • If one of my family members were going to the Olympics, it would be a HUGE deal! I'm not a sports fan, but if my spouse, kid, cousin, brother…even a neighbor or a co-worker, were going to be in the Olympics – hell, I'd learn something about the sport and if I couldn't actually go to London, I'd be glued to my TV and cheering like crazy for them. What's the matter with Mitt?

  16. Jon Stewart's point about Romney still rings true; no one cares that he's rich or even aloofly rich. We've had several Presidents who were aloof because of their wealth but they didn't try to hide it or look down on those less fortunate.

    That said, the younger Romney who was practical and business-minded would have been a powerful centrist candidate instead of the awkwardly conservative one. The same strategy is what doomed McCain's bid.

  17. Hannah Wells says:

    Is there footage? I would love to see the reporter's face.

  18. Hockey is an expensive sport and nobody complained about that when Sarah Palin was running for VP. Todd’s snow-mobile sport was also expensive.

  19. I just don't like the guy from a few videos ive seen about his stance on marijuana… his attitude just annoys the piss out of me. I know people against marijuana but at least they can act normal and respond in an orderly fashion instead of just acting like a complete tool about it. RON PAUL!

  20. He is an asshole, but not as big an asshole as Obama!

    • More dribble from the Left. With the economy in free fall, the only thing they have left to campaign with are personal attacks – I don't believe that Romney is the best choice, but at least I'm pretty sure he is not a Communist . I can't say the same for the other candidate.

    • Anonymous says:

      David Fugler man not be the best commentor, but at least I'm pretty sure he's not a delusional idiot. I can't say the same for Steven Kirchhof.

    • Steven, you are going to be so disappointed.

    • All this talk about communism and socialism… I often wonder how many people realize the early christians were communists? The only christian group left that practices communism as described in the new testament are the Hutterites as far as I know. The rest of us are just too greedy or too lazy, lol. Obamney a communist you say? LOL. Communism… LOL.

  21. Syed Ali says:

    O

  22. I'm not rich and I enjoy the Met…music isn't just for rich people you know.

  23. After receiving a $77,000 tax credit for the horse, he barley knew anything about it.LMFAO.

  24. Sharon Wendt Goodman says:

    Truth is we have no choice BUT to vote for the rich guys. They're the only ones who even get a chance to become candidates. Repeal Citizens United!

  25. Eduardo Soto says:

    Is Romney's Campaign behind him trying to conceal his financial status or is he really not feeling confortable with himself for having ammased his wealth in a way that negatively affected many americans and businesses in the recent past? In any case, it is so obvious and no appealing to voters, I think it is safe to say that conservatives would vote not for Romney but rather against Obama.

  26. This article is a waste of time.. Who cares? Nick Chiles is clearly a completely biased lib. It's a horse. A HORSE. I'm not even voting for him, nor am I voting for Obama, but I find this article to be completely idiotic, and some of the comments I've read, also idiotic. "Oh, if he doesn't care about his wife, how much do you think he cares about American people?" IT'S A HORSE!

  27. Nick Chiles – you make some pretty ridiculous statements in this piece of "journalism." You say "one of the reasons New Yorkers keep electing him again and again, is he’s comfortable being rich. " Huh? Are you serious? You think that is an actual reason people vote for Bloomberg. What an idiotic statement. But even more idiotic is your assertion that "President Obama continues to enjoy much higher likability ratings" than Romney. Oh, really? According to what polls? You claim that people don't like Romney because he is a "liar"? If that's true, than the level of resentment for Obama in this country is ten times what it is for Romney. You're going to find out in November in a big way.

    • fire in your belly

    • You know it, Ricky.

    • Scott: you need to take a step back, relax and consider the source. They believe if you say it enough people will believe and the moronic people they are talking to actually do believe these sound bites. It’s futile to try inject facts in a debate with those that are basically lemmings. For that matter how dare you use facts vs. propaganda. The nerve.

    • You're right, David. Lemmings will be lemmings. Idiots will be idiots.

    • Scott Schafer .im sorry are you awake & paying attention here?? Romney is a dick weed! old, rich, out of touch with reality, woman hating, minority hating, capitalist…oh yeah & he doesn't know ANYTHING about politics or foreign policy..Russia??? as USA 's greatest emeny??? What frickin' decade is HE living in..and to insult UK at the olympics….geez… I have to wonder about republicans..maybe they all need to smoke marijuana & chill out!

    • Rachelle Hood Gibson You need to turn off MSNBC and think for yourself. Time to stop the silly name-calling, Rachelle. After all, what on earth is a "dick weed" and is there an official "dick weed-ometer" we can apply to both Obama and Romney to see who is the more acceptable candidate? Your comment about Romney being "rich, out of touch with reality" is pretty sad because you are simply repeating the talking points of the liberal media. It's nothing more than envy politics, which is really sad. "He's just a RICH, GREEDY guy!" Obama has been unsuccessful as a leader so that's all the left has left. Name-calling, envy and jealousy. And you say Romney is a woman-hater and minority-hater? What evidence do you have for that? After the disastrous DNC Convention, it is quite obvious that Obama-worshippers such as you have nothing left and are now lashing out wildly. Pretty sad.

  28. Darren WT Campbell says:

    It doesn't matter who it is, you have to understand that they are all puppets who are being controlled by the higher power who remain in the back ground so the public will never know who they really are.

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