Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Campaign 2012: The Two Faces of Sandy

If you want to know a man's character, put him under pressure.  That's what my grandfather used to tell me.

Well, I think a major natural disaster right before a presidential election covers it.

With multiple states incurring billion dollar devastation, we are getting a clear picture of the leadership skills of both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

Barack Obama put his campaign on hold so that he could be hands on in dealing with the emergency management. "The election will take care of itself next week. Right now, our number one priority is to make sure that we are saving lives, that our search and rescue teams are going to be in place, that people are going to get the food, the water, the shelter that they need in case of emergency, and that we respond as quickly as possible to get the economy back on track."

Even die-hard Republicans have appreciated Barack's on the ground leadership. Chris Christie commented on the Today Show, "The President has been all over this and he deserves great credit." and "I was on the phone at midnight again last night with the President, personally, he has expedited the designation of New Jersey as a major disaster area."

So, President Obama put aside the campaign and not only did the job he was hired to do, he did it well and worked with people who have in the past attacked him politically.

What was Mitt Romney doing?  Since he lauds his business acumen he could have stopped his campaign and made fundraising phone calls to his fellow corporate 1%'ers and raised millions to help utilizing private money as opposed to federal money proving the Republicans' small government theory worked.

He didn't.

He merely renamed his campaign rallies "storm relief events" which were nothing more than regular rallies in unaffected areas. When asked why political rally videos touting the candidate were played at an event which was supposed to be non-political, Stuart Stevens, a major strategist for Romney, could only say, "I don't know how that could have happened."  Apparently, even a Republican strategist knows when you've crossed the decency line.

When asked by reporters if  he would still consider eliminating FEMA as he has claimed in the past, Romney refused to answer.

Mitt had the perfect chance to show what he could do for the people.  Instead, he showed that he continues to be all about what is best for Mitt Romney.  Any assistance for the 99% is merely window dressing.

The choice could not be any clearer.

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