From the BBC: The foundation of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan has expressed outrage after a vial said to have held a sample of his blood was put on sale in an online auction.
U.K.-based PFC Auctions says the blood was taken from Reagan after the failed 1981 assassination attempt against him.
The PFC website put the latest bid for the vial at £6,270 ($9,910) on Tuesday....
Mitt Romney campaign headquarters. The candidate is in a meeting with a number of his aides, including advisers Eric Fehrnstrom and strategist Ed Gillespie. He's displaying an intensely angry side of himself the public's never seen.
"Goddammit, Eric, how'd it get out that there's a vial of Reagan blood out there?" Romney storms. "I'll fire the bastard who leaked it -- and we all know I'm good at firing people!"
"Governor -- "
"An auction? Can you imagine how dangerous this would be if it fell into Gingrich's hands ahead of the convention? Bachmann's?" Romney yells. "That blood can seal the presidency!"
"We've confirmed the blood is still in the U.K.," Gillespie says. "Gingrich's people are no closer to getting it than we are."
Romney is fuming.
"With the Blood of Reagan, I could warn against the perils of Big Government spending, while raising the debt ceiling 18 times," he says. "I could reform Social Security and Medicare without decimating them."
Romney looks up. "I could be the national father figure everyone craves -- not a guy from a Land's End catalog."
"Yes, Governor, we're aware."
"So why can't I just give them a million dollars for it? For god's sake, how many Super PACs do I have?"
"If word got out that you offered a million dollars for the Blood of Reagan, when the highest offer is under $10 thousand," Fehrnstrom says, "you'd look as out of touch with the middle class as when you bet Rick Perry during the middle of a debate."
"Is that so, Etch-a-Sketch?" Romney sneers. "I want that blood."
"But what if there's a trend? I'm not sure we want to risk having the Tea Party trying to dig up the Founding Fathers," Gillespie says. "I mean -- literally."
"The Blood of Reagan means a landslide victory," Romney says, sounding envious. "And invasions that only last a weekend!"
"But there's something else," Fehrnstrom says. He shifts uncomfortably. "It could turn you into a Democrat."
"Well, Obama in many ways is just a 90's era Republican -- especially on defense. And he killed bin Laden. So you've got to play to the right of that," Gillespie says. "Having you on both sides of every issue just hasn't been working."
Fehrnstrom nods. "With Santorum's anti-women crusade, Tea Party fundamentalism and Boehner's campaign of contrarianism, America's been pulled so far to the right, that the Blood of Reagan would shift you left on the political spectrum -- once and for all!"
"Is that really so bad, for the former governor of Massachusetts?" Romney looks momentarily thoughtful. "I mean, I hate having to disavow Romneycare."
Fehrnstrom looks alarmed. "Think about it! The Blood of Reagan turns the Republican presidential candidate into a Democrat? You can't do it! The party would finally collapse in on itself! The Republican narrative can't take any more blows!"
The room goes quiet.
"What would it look like," Romney asks softly, "if I turned Democrat?"
"It wouldn't look too different," the Gillespie says. "First, you'd hear yourself apologizing for attacking that gay kid, and supporting gay marriage."
Romney thinks for a moment. "But if Gingrich gets the blood? Before Tampa?"
"We spin it as a transparent attempt to manipulate the memory of a pillar of the Republican party, when being Republican meant bringing down Communism without firing a shot, it meant uniting the country during times of national tragedy, not dividing it, and it meant putting the public interest over political sabotage."
"Besides, it could turn Gingrich into a Democrat, too," says Gillespie, "just when he needs to get back on the lecture and punditry circuit. He hasn't got the nerve."
"What if we get the blood, but hold off on using it unless we really need to?" Romney asks. "Just so it doesn't fall into the wrong hands."
"We can do that," he says. "We'll send someone to the U.K. today. We don't want the Obama people making a move."
Romney speaks quietly, but with conviction. "I could really use that blood."
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