Barack Obama continues, apparently, to lead Mitt Romney by a considerable distance when Americans are polled on the question of the candidates’ “likability.”
This is particularly galling to me because of what I know about Governor Romney from personal sources.
Considerably before Mitt Romney took over the 2002 Winter Olympics, I had begun to take notice of him. Why? Because, somewhat coincidentally, I had gotten to know several people (Mormons and non-Mormons, in Utah and on the east coast) who knew him very well, and I was struck by the awe, affection, even veneration, with which they spoke of him, his competence, and his character. I’ve never met Mr. Romney myself, but I know a surprising number of people who are closely tied to him in one way or another.
Talking with my friends, I didn’t hear this story, but I did hear this one, from the girl’s father himself, whom I’ve known for quite a few years now. And I heard many others of similar import, even if less dramatic.
With my friend and colleague Dr. Michael Bush, who has known Mitt Romney since they were LDS missionaries in France together several decades ago, I’m bothered and frustrated by what I have excellent reason to believe is an utterly false public image of a very good man. Professor Bush was so exasperated by public comments against Mr. Romney, in fact — comments portraying Mr. Romney as heartless, cold, aloof, uncaring, greedy, arrogant, and the like — that he launched an excellent website called Mitt: The Man in order to counter these serious misperceptions.
I recommend it.