CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- In his Thursday address at the Democratic National Convention, Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer (D) wasted no time before getting right to his point. "I know Mitt Romney," he said as soon as the crowd followed his repeated order to "settle down." Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm (D) also skewered Romney in her speech, defending the auto bailout and suggesting that "in Romney's world, the cars get the elevator; the workers get the shaft."
In 2008, Schweitzer played the attack dog against GOP opponent John McCain, and reveled in taking on the role again Thursday night. "Governor Mitt Romney saddled Massachusetts taxpayers with an additional $2.6 billion in debt, and left 'em with the most debt per capita of any state in America. In Montana, that dog don't hunt," he said, employing a cliche he'd return to throughout the speech, as the crowd recited it along with him.
"I'll let you in on a little secret: when a politician doesn't want to be honest about a tax hike, he calls it a fee. Mitt raised taxes -- uh, fees -- on driver's licenses, on school bus rides, on mental health services and even on milk. And here's the one that got a burr under my saddle: he quadrupled the fee for a gun license! Maybe that's okay for a guy who hunts 'varmints,'" he said. "But for the rest of us, that dog don't hunt."
After reciting a list of lousy economic trends in Massachusetts under Romney, Schweitzer guessed that Romney the businessman wouldn't approve of Romney the governor's record. "If private equity Mitt Romney met Governor Mitt Romney, he'd do what he says he likes to do. He'd fire 'um, and outsource the job," he said.
Schweitzer also slammed Romney for saying that capturing Osama bin Laden was "not worth moving heaven and earth."
"Tonight," Schweitzer said, "bin Laden isn't on earth, and he sure isn't in heaven. Thanks to the courage of American Special Forces and the bold leadership of our president, Osama bin Laden is at the bottom of the ocean."
Granholm, who spoke before Schweitzer, also challenged Romney's ability to create jobs. "He loves our cars so much, they have their own elevator. But the people who design, build, and sell those cars? Well, in Romney's world, the cars get the elevator; the workers get the shaft," Granholm said. "Mitt Romney says his business experience qualifies him to be president. Sure, he's made lots of money. Good for him ... But how did he make that fortune, and at whose expense? Too often, he made it at the expense of middle-class Americans."