“Recognize this is the decision that will be made by the Supreme Court,” he said. “The Democrats try and make this a political issue every four years, but this is a matter in the courts. It’s been settled for some time in the courts.” [CBS NEWS]

AN INTERESTING place to start for Mitt Romney considering the background to the convention roll out is right wing Republicans who have made the entire party look like cretins. In his answer you see the germ of the man who became governor of Massachusetts. There’s no question he is an abortion rights opponent, that in his heart he’s against abortion, but unlike most of his party, Mitt Romney wants to send the message that Roe v. Wade is “settled” law. He also reaffirms the more sane position that in cases of rape, incest or the life of the mother, these are exceptions to his stance. Mitt Romney’s statement above is as far as you’re going to hear any Republican nominee in our lifetime go on this issue. That it sends an unmistakable message to women is the ramp to getting them to listen to him on the economy. Whether undecided or other voters who are softly decided will let this message in over the weeks ahead depends on Romney’s speech this week.


David Brooks hints at the challenge Mitt Romney faces in the coming days, with a snarky column befitting the moment.

Mitt Romney was born on March 12, 1947, in Ohio, Florida, Michigan, Virginia and several other swing states. He emerged, hair first, believing in America, and especially its national parks. He was given the name Mitt, after the Roman god of mutual funds, and launched into the world with the lofty expectation that he would someday become the Arrow shirt man.

[...] There was, frankly, a period of wandering. After hearing Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side,” Romney decided to leave Mormonism and become Amish. He left the Amish faith because of its ban on hair product, and bounced around before settling back in college. There, he majored in music, rendering Mozart’s entire oeuvre in PowerPoint.

[...] After his governorship, Romney suffered through a midlife crisis, during which he became a social conservative. This prepared the way for his presidential run. He barely won the 2012 Republican primaries after a grueling nine-month campaign, running unopposed. At the convention, where his Secret Service nickname is Mannequin, Romney will talk about his real-life record: successful business leader, superb family man, effective governor, devoted community leader and prudent decision-maker. If elected, he promises to bring all Americans together and make them feel inferior.

Who is this man about to be nominated for the Republican ticket? Lois Romano does a piece today for Politico about Ann Romney’s role to “humanize” her husband. Will people looking in give her and his family the chance? Romney himself has done a lot of damage to his own image over the last months, with the Obama campaign very successfully lowering the hammer to such affect that they were able to define him first.

We know that Mitt Romney is a devout Mormon who’s given more to his church than anyone else ever to run for the presidency. If you were worth a quarter of a billion dollars would you give 10% away to your church or favorite charity? He’s a family man who is unquestionably an amazing father and husband. The interviews with family now pouring into the media stream show incredibly touching moments of intense struggle that any family experiences. As for his career at Bain Capital that exercised Team Obama and his supporters, none other than Pres. Clinton lauded his tremendously successful business career, along with Steve Rattner, as well as Cory Booker, among others. When you look at Romney’s role in saving the Olympics, it was vividly covered Los Angeles papers where I lived at the time and the reviews were off the charts, as was the television coverage, painting Romney as the hero. Interviews with friends don’t recognize his portrait in the media.

The demonization on Mitt Romney by Democrats, with Team Romney utilizing their own on Pres. Obama, which Republicans have been doing for years, is the nature of American politics, as is the compromising and tortured political philosophy of both men that has rendered viewers of the spectacle, except for blind partisans and loyalists who support the current system, worn out and distrustful, including of the media covering the men who want to be our next president.

But Mitt Romney sent a signal with his statement on abortion. Oh, the partisans will say he’s lying and will do anything to get elected. That’s not really news, though, is it? It’s what all politicians do in this position. The soberness of Romney’s abortion statement seems to answer Kathleen Parker’s plea from Monday, What the *#@% Is Wrong With Republicans?“

Mitt Romney’s answer is to state that Roe v. Wade is settled law; of course that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t be for overturning Roe v. Wade, it’s just not what he’s running on or his priority. Unlike his fevered base and the people who handed him the nomination, Romney jumped through the wingnut hoops that neither Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Rob Portman, Bobby Jindal, or Mike Huckabee, a man who Mike Murphy said could have gotten the nomination this year, would tackle. When you think about it, considering the zealots of the Republican base, it’s a miracle the Republican Party came up with anyone remotely sane.

Mitt Romney’s strongest pitch remains the economy, which is the voters biggest issue. So, when you take away the extremists who are killing Republicans with the broader electorate, the Todd Akin wing, with the economy still rocky and Pres. Obama doubted so deeply on his stewardship of it, if the media will cover Romney’s “settled” law philosophy on Roe v. Wade, while it being clear he’s adamantly against abortion, what might happen with women? Is there enough time for Romney-Ryan to bridge this wide gender gap?

Though Democrats won’t give him an inch on it, even if he does have his governorship to prove that he has respected the court, while going further to implement that decision in how he governed, which today would make the Todd Akin wing’s head explode, Mitt Romney’s statement to Scott Peley on abortion is a very big deal. It’s also why the wingnut zealots in his party don’t trust him.