A brief word about my politics just so you know where my review is coming from. I supported Mitt Romney in 2008 and I support him now. My reasons are my own, suffice it to say, he has my vote. However, he almost lost it on Friday. Almost.
So word got out that Romney was coming to Boise for a big-shot $1000 a plate fundraiser but no public rally. That was until Santorum came to Boise and held a public rally. Now all of a sudden Romney was doing the same (after his expensive lunch of course). Start time for the rally was 1:30 and it happened that it was being held just down the road from where I work.
I called a friend I work with and we decided “Sure. That would be cool. Let’s go.” We left work at 12:00, drove thru McDonalds, went to the Rally place, parked, ate, then went inside at 12:30. It was exciting. It really was. I was actually excited all morning after setting these plans in motion. I had never been to something like this and never really thought I would get the chance to see Romney in person. We get there and music was playing, people of all stripes were gathering, secret service were keeping a watchful eye, media was snooping around. It was awesome.
We ended up getting a spot a few people back from the barricade that surrounded the raised platform and began our wait. Even for a fat guy like me, what’s an hour standing? Well, I’ll be honest by the time that hour was over, I was in pretty bad shape. My feet hurt, and my back was killing me, and it didn’t help that it was a concrete floor and as it got closer to the start time, people started pressing forward which made for a very uncomfortable situation. But that’s ok, it was show time.
This is where things started going askew. He didn’t show at 1:30. He didn’t show at 1:45 or even at 2:00. It was about 2:15 when things started to happen. This is about the time it should have been over and it was just starting. A woman with 4 small children had to leave at 2:10. Her kids, although very young, did great up until then but they had had enough and were ready to go home. Talk about disenfranchising your base. My friend and I even set a limit of 2:30. If he hadn’t shown by then we were out of there.
Well it started and out comes the owners of the establishment we were at. They got enough press that day; they aren’t getting any from me. They talked for 10 minutes about their business. This would have been fine if the whole thing started on time but it was only pissing people off at this point. Then the Governor of Idaho came out and talked for 5 minutes or so. I swear if I had a tomato I would have thrown it, consequences be damned. FINALLY, out comes Mitt. I got quite caught up with it all at this point and found myself grinning like an idiot and clapping and cheering.
His speech was the same as you could hear at any news outlet, but it was pretty cool seeing him in person, and he did customize it for Idaho. Talking about how he spent summers here in his youth, etc. But there was something missing. What was it? Oh ya. Where the hell was the apology for being 45 minutes late? So sorry your big-shot fundraiser went over and the really important people caused you to be late to meet with the peons but jeez at least apologize. I was in seriously pain here. People had to leave. Weren’t you here to meet with us?
The next day it dawned on me that no, in fact he was not here for us. We were here for him. All of us at the rally were unwitting pawns in some political show to make him look good. And I wouldn’t have minded, except he didn’t even really treat his pawns well. Santorum was on time and had a venue with seating. But all the people sitting at Santorum’s rally were pawns too.
All politicians are like this so even though Romney dropped a few points in my mind, it just meant they all dropped a few points. He’s still my guy but he does loose 2 stars for the disrespect paid to all of us there that day. And also I’m posting the picture I told myself I wouldn’t because it makes Romney followers look bad and therefore makes him look bad.
Romney you get 3 stars. If you live in Idaho remember to go to the caucus on March 6th, and for the rest of you, don’t forget to vote for Romney November 6th.
Monday, March 05, 2012 JustJim