We Are SO Looking Forward to the Debates
As Romney speaks notice he is smart enough to do so wo TelePrompTer unlike obama
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) September 7, 2012
The more Republicans stick to this tired meme, the more they’ll be blindsided. (Or they’ll just ignore it, like they ignore the rest of reality.) The whole notion of Romney as a Great Debater — we even caught Patton Oswalt assenting to it last night — stems from a friendly comparison to such Giants of Locution as Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, and Newt Gingrich. Even Clint Eastwood would shine with that competition.
Whether or not he uses a Teleprompter at a given moment, Mitt Romney is bound to his slogans. He has shown no facility whatsoever with extemporaneous speaking — witness the $10,000 bet, the cookie slam, or any Curb Your Enthusiasm-worthy Awkward Moment throughout his campaign. (And witness this Sunday’s appearance on Meet the Press, although we don’t trust David Gregory to throw Mitt anything except the softest of pitches.)
This is the problem with caricature: Caricature can be fun and useful — we swear by it — but the moment you lose sight of the reality your caricature is meant to lampoon, you’re doomed. You end up arguing with an empty chair.