Friday, August 22, 2008

I Guess this Means Mitt’s off the Short List

The walking, talking disaster that is John McCain stepped in its largest crap pile of the campaign, as he followed his admission to the belief that one has to make $5 million a year to be considered “rich,” with an even more out-of-touch admission that he can’t remember how many homes he owns!

As Barack Obama, his surrogates, and the entire liberal blogosphere jump on the opportunity to remind voters of how little McCain understands about ordinary people actually live, perhaps the biggest loser of all is Mitt Romney, whose reputation for business acumen (as measured by his net worth) has kept him on the GOP short list.

I’m a little disappointed, however, because aside from Joe Lieberman, who makes McCain’s speaking style seem dynamic and inspiring, Romney has been my preferred choice. The man a gaffe machine, who is completely oblivious to the fact that he’s not nearly as charming as he thinks he is (think Sam Malone without funny scriptwriters!)

Rather than explain why Romney can’t be the guy, I’ll just let a couple of graphs tell the story. Here’s McCain’s perception of “rich” on a spectrum that includes annual income quintiles, and other potential definitions of "rich" (courtesy of Ezra Klein):

(Click to enlarge)

And here’s a reprise of a chart showing Romney’s net worth relative to that of McCain and the other presidential candidates:

(Click to enlarge)

Clearly, if McCain is going to put the brakes on his growing out-of-touch, elitism problem, Romney won’t be the guy to help him do it. On the other hand, McCain may find himself in the position where he has absolutely no choice but to go with it:

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