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Frum writes: "The most quoted speech at CPAC this year was Mitt Romney's, but my vote for the most significant goes to Grover Norquist's. In his charmingly blunt way, Norquist articulated out loud a case for Mitt Romney that you hear only whispered by other major conservative leaders."

GOP rainmaker Grover Norquist speaks at the conservative Americans for Prosperity 'Defending the American Dream Summit' in Washington, 11/05/11. (photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)
GOP rainmaker Grover Norquist speaks at the conservative Americans for Prosperity 'Defending the American Dream Summit' in Washington, 11/05/11. (photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

Norquist: Romney Will Do As Told

By David Frum, The Daily Beast

14 February 12


Is Mitt Romney so weak he won't be able to stand up to Congress?

he most quoted speech at CPAC this year was Mitt Romney's, but my vote for the most significant goes to Grover Norquist's. In his charmingly blunt way, Norquist articulated out loud a case for Mitt Romney that you hear only whispered by other major conservative leaders.

They have reconciled themselves to a Romney candidacy because they see Romney as essentially a weak and passive president who will concede leadership to congressional conservatives:

All we have to do is replace Obama. ... We are not auditioning for fearless leader. We don't need a president to tell us in what direction to go. We know what direction to go. We want the Ryan budget. ... We just need a president to sign this stuff. We don't need someone to think it up or design it. The leadership now for the modern conservative movement for the next 20 years will be coming out of the House and the Senate.

The requirement for president?

Pick a Republican with enough working digits to handle a pen to become president of the United States. This is a change for Republicans: the House and Senate doing the work with the president signing bills. His job is to be captain of the team, to sign the legislation that has already been prepared.

This is not a very complimentary assessment of Romney's leadership. It's also not a very realistic political program: congressional Republicans have a disapproval rating of about 75%. If Americans get the idea that a vote for Romney is a vote for the Ryan plan, Romney is more or less doomed.

To date, sad to say, Romney has worked hard to confirm this image of weakness.

Nobody wants a president who acts as the passive instrument of even generally popular groups like labor unions. (Did you know that - despite decades of declining popularity - unions still have an approval rating of 52%? I didn't until I looked it up.)

But a candidate who appeases the most disliked people in national politics? That guy will command neither public affection nor respect.

Mitt Romney badly needs his Sister Souljah moment. Instead, he's running as Jim DeMint's doormat. your social media marketing partner


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+46 # universlman 2012-02-14 17:23
the GOP has a blind spot - this is how we wound up with G W Bush
+30 # RMDC 2012-02-14 18:17
If elected president, of course Romney will do as he is told. All presidents do. If they don't, they are simply killed or impeached as Nixon was. Obama is doing exactly as he is being told. The bankers and the pentagon run the US regime. They do not accept any sort of independence in the white house.
+14 # Majikman 2012-02-15 00:58
Amen to that! Most of us on this list feel betrayed by Obama, as I do, but I believe he's basically a good man. The pictures of him lately are horrible...both stills and video. He's haggard, has aged 20 years and I see deep sorrow. He struggles to be upbeat and can't pull it off.
+4 # RLF 2012-02-15 06:19
All presidents age like crazy. It not a stress free gig. It is much worse when you stab those that elected you in the back so you feel like you have no one on your side except the bankers...we know what they do to their friends...sell them mortgage backed securities. (Oh wait! Those were their customers...the ir friends and they bet against those securities!)
+66 # freeportguy 2012-02-14 23:33
Funny how the GOP criticizes Obama's "lack of leadership", yet are openly demanding a mere PUPPET whose strings can be pulled by non-elected people and other deep pocketed interests (Hello Koch bros!).

"Country First", huh? D'uh!
+2 # Karlus58 2012-02-15 10:01
Yes, absolutely...a glaring truth.
+8 # Regina 2012-02-15 11:24
"Lack of leadership" is the malarkey the Righties are selling the public, all designed to make Obama fail. Actually they want a puppet they completely control, hewing to the prepared (behind locked doors) line devised by the puppet masters.
+31 # uglysexy 2012-02-14 23:42
I hate this norquist....tot al nazi like limbaugh...

unfortunately when israel hits iran and iran hits back...I suspect we will at best have martial law under a democrat and at worst a right wing military coup
+18 # RMDC 2012-02-15 05:12
uglysexy -- you said it perfectly. How does this guy get such power? I once saw him called "Grover Nonsense."

He was up to his eyeballs with Jack Abramoff and yet did not get charged with any crimes. Jack took the fall for him.

I guess being a leader of the neo-cons is not so hard to do. they are programmed to follow any sort of idiocy.
+32 # Bill Clements 2012-02-15 01:41
Interesting advice to conservatives and Republicans: it doesn't matter who we elect for president because the "real" leadership resides in the House and Senate. After all, they're the ones crafting the legislation, making the laws, etc. We just need a figurehead, a bootlicking dummy in the White House who knows how to use a pen.

Quite a vision for the future, though I must say, not entirely original. At least in recent memory, we have Reagan and Bush as examples.

But it does get to who exactly is it, then, that Republicans want the country run by? The Republican Senate, clearly owned by the corporations, the banks, and the very wealthy, would be your answer.

And this is their vision for America? A country with an increasingly uneducated, stupid (and powerless) middle class that will be forced to work for minimum wages at the hands of people like the Koch brothers? A country where even the president is only a puppet?

Even George Orwell (were he alive) would surely blanch at what Republicans are fashioning for America's future. Dystopia indeed.
+18 # ozken 2012-02-15 03:00
Congress has an approval rating of 25% and Unions of 52%. Who would have thunk it? Everone with an ounce of common sense I suspect.
+6 # ABen 2012-02-15 03:24
To paraphrase H. L. Menken, people get the government they vote for, and they deserve to get it good and hard.
+12 # Grandkadolz 2012-02-15 03:52
Isn't Romney one of the 1% Of course he'll do as he's told, it's to his own benefit.
Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821) wrote in 1811: “Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle merite.” ("Every nation has the government it deserves.")He was in favor of restoring the monarchy after the French revolution. A nation of sheep will be governed by shphards. The sheep will eventually be led to sheering and when the wool is not enough, to the slaughter house.
+17 # tedrey 2012-02-15 05:59
Let's all get this speech spread as widely as possible. it can open the eyes of millions.
+8 # jack406 2012-02-15 11:47
Grover Norquist has all the Republicans under his thumb. He will be leading the Nation if they win.
Can you imagine a Lobbyist leading the country?. It's already happening in the Senate and House for the Republicans. They are afraid to say no or stand up against him. That's why Boehner can't get a budget done.
+7 # Majikman 2012-02-15 12:38
"people get the g'ment they deserve" is another meaningless, bullcrap slogan designed to blame the victims and let the perps off the hook. I think the OWS folks, Egyptians, Syrians, etal. would much rather be up against a g'ment force with one shot muskets than the mind bending armaments of our present day.
No people "deserves" to be beaten into submission by its dictator (most of whom couldn't succeed were it not for US assistance)
+1 # Bill Clements 2012-02-15 12:49
+4 # tahoevalleylines 2012-02-15 13:37
To understand the methodology of the oligarchy we call the Military Industrial complex, see "Under The Prophet In Utah", by the first Senator of Utah, Frank J. Cannon. We know Senator Cannon was a man of principle and intellectual honesty, because he was excommunicated from the Mormon Church during his tenure...

It would benefit Mr. Grover Norquist to spend some quite time with Cannon's book before he and the GOP talk themselves into (another) corner.
+13 # Caballero69 2012-02-15 16:03
Has G N forgotten the President of the United States has to be "the leader of the free world?"

Why would anyone not in the grip of Republican Derangement Syndrome think the Congressional Republicans are leaders?
+3 # rosaleee 2012-03-21 11:18
So. Grover Norquist is the self-appointed POTUS.

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