Bain & Company

Liberals worry a lot about rigged voting machines. They should probably worry more about more mundane ways to skew the election outcome.

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Mitt Romney's “47 percent” gaffe starts an overdue argument on the right about people who don't pay taxes.

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Another day, and yet another story about the Romney campaign’s efforts to get their man to open up more to voters. This time, it’s Jason Horowitz’s turn to tackle the subject, in the Washington Post Style section, and he does as good a job of it as anyone, if you ask me, because he correctly diagnoses the problem as one of “trying too hard.” And like previous examples of the “what’s up with Mitt” genre, the piece includes examples of anecdotes that Romney’s supporters ardently believe that the candidate would do well to invoke more often on the trail.

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Since I know everyone is as fixated on trying to understand Mitt Romney as I am, I highly recommend Louis Menand’s piece in the latest New Yorker. It's ostensibly a review of The Real Romney, the new biography by Michael Kranish and Scott Helman, but basically another entry in the burgeoning “Just who the heck is this guy” genre. Menand tries to answer a question that I took on in my own review of the biography a few weeks ago—why is Romney such a lousy and unnatural candidate on the campaign trail?

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There was a time during the presidential primaries that I thought Mitt Romney might make a good foreign-policy president. Where John McCain was impulsive and pugilistic--willing to make grave decisions about the fate of the country with little reflection, or for purely tactical reasons--Romney seemed more moderate, less reactive. I hoped that Romney's penchant for strategic analysis, and the problem-solving skills he picked up as a management consultant at Bain & Company, would make him a more thoughtful commander-in-chief.

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Stormin' Mormon

John Judis on Mitt Romney's 1994 challenge to Ted Kennedy.

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