I had been sitting out the presidential race until now, hoping that Sonny Bono would throw his hat into the ring, but as soon as I was informed that he'd been dead for fourteen years, I decided it was time to get off the couch.
Once word got out that I was available, I immediately got a call from Mitt Romney, who asked me to join him on the "Believe in America" campaign bus as he toured around the Super Tuesday states. I showed up in front of his hotel in Fargo, North Dakota, this morning at 9 A.M and shook hands with the candidate. We loaded the family dog onto the bus's roof rack, and hit the road.
(For those of you who don't know me, I am, in my spare time, the highest paid political consultant in American politics. Modesty -- not to mention confidentiality agreements -- prevents me from telling you of all my greatest feats of consultancy. I can say that although I'd always been highly respected inside the Beltway, it wasn't until my "wide stance" defense for Senator Larry Craig that my theories on messaging and rapid response became required reading for the poli sci majors at Harvard and Yale.)
While Mitt drank his morning OJ and munched on a granola bar, I handcuffed the handle of the attaché case filled with $100 bills that comprised my fee to my left wrist. (I'd heard Romney 2012 might be a bit low on funds, hence the desire for cash and the necessity of handcuffs.)
Then, all of us seated in our alligator leather upholstered swiveling (and reclining), captain's chairs, I was informed by Mitt and his brain trust that the reason I'd been hired was to somehow cure the candidate of his Foot-in-Mouth Disease. "Two Cadillacs." "I like to fire people." "Friends who are NASCAR team owners." That sort of thing.
I told Mitt that he had been misdiagnosed. He didn't have Foot-in-Mouth Disease, or, in his case, Hermes-in-Mouth Disease. No, his "gaffes" were actually cries from the heart. His "gaffes" were actually his truest self, yearning to breath free and express the love of 5-star, yacht club, Lear jet living that makes his loins sing!
As such, they were likely to continue.
But, they don't pay me the big bucks for nothing. My solution? The Romney campaign had to make some moves that would act as counterweights to the Richie Rich moments. That way, whatever tidbits of privilege Mitt shared, voters would nonetheless start getting the impression that the candidate was not just a hopelessly out of touch 1 %er. Instead, they'd begin to think of him as a guy who understands the daily lives of average Americans.
Here were my suggestions:
• Arrange to have the campaign bus repossessed.
• Re-invest funds currently stashed in Cayman Islands in a hedge fund consisting entirely of scratch-off lottery tickets.
• At rallies, lead supporters in a rousing rendition of Weezer anthem, "I Want to Be from Beverly Hills."
• Leak to press that you've been eating Spam every night for a week.
• Hire at least one more person of color to stand in the background at campaign stops joining the one ubiquitous middle-aged black woman currently on display.
• Stop getting your hair done by the same hairdresser who does Calista Gingrich.
• Put up shelves in garage. Chop off finger with circular saw. Go to emergency room. Wait to see doctor for seven hours.
• Continue run for presidency but spend spare time selling non-essential possessions on eBay.
After hearing my advice, the candidate and his staff stood up on their alligator leather upholstered swiveling (and reclining), captain's chairs, and began applauding wildly. Mitt seemed most excited about singing the Weezer anthem at the end of rallies . "When I sing to the crowds they love it," he said beaming. It wasn't until that moment that I truly understood just how out of touch with the voters Mitt really is.
Follow Jonathan Leigh Solomon on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Solomonisms