Sunday, April 08, 2007

Romney the Varmint Hunter

Romney's claim that he "hunts varmints" is strangely reminiscent of John Kerry's "Can I get me a hunting license here?" And the Swift Boat Veterans who exposed Kerry have been well matched by Massachusetts conservatives who are exposing Romney's attempted fraud that he has a conservative record and beliefs.

Boston Globe columnist Joan Vennochi ("Guns, trust, and Romney"), says that Romney's gun statements go beyond exaggeration, into the realm of untruths. Republicans need to realize that this is also the case with his current statements vs. his record on other issues, especially his supposed defense of marriage and family values. Vennochi writes:

Campaigning in Indianapolis, he said "I've always been a rodent and rabbit hunter. Small varmints if you will. I began when I was 15 or so and I have hunted those kinds of varmints since then. More than two times." On Friday, The New York Times published an article that asked "Is Romney a hunter? Depends on what hunt is."

... when do flip-flops turn into something more ominous?

Changing from pro-gun control to anti-gun control is a flip-flop. Saying you are a longtime hunter when you hunted twice is an exaggeration. Saying you own a gun when you don't is a lie. OK , it's a small lie, and Americans are used to whoppers from politicians....

But it does raise the trust issue, which is the main thing that stands between Romney and the Republican nomination. The Republican right wants to believe Romney is the passionate conservative he now insists he is. To believe it, conservative voters must dismiss much of what Romney espoused on social issues during two previous political campaigns.

To do that, conservatives must accept one of two possibilities: Romney lied to Massachusetts voters when he ran for office here, or he underwent a dramatic political conversion over the past five years, which just happened to coincide with his presidential run. Either scenario undercuts Romney's trustworthiness.