Don't Panic

Why are Britons so hostile towards Mitt Romney?

There seems to be a trend in the British press of out and out hostility towards Mitt Romney.Mitt Romney on the campaign trail

According to Oscar winning film producer, Harvey Weinstein, David Cameron has picked up on it, too.

Speaking on the BBC, Weinstein said: "I witnessed [the] Prime Minister saying to a group of people, myself included, that Mitt Romney had that unique distinction of uniting all of England against him with his various remarks."

Part of it appears to be Romney’s BoJo-esque (that’s Boris Johnson-like) talent for being filmed saying something inflammatory.

This latest anti-Iran sentiment follows the release of footage where Romney appeared to dismiss 47 per cent of Americans as government freeloaders.

In the video, which emerged from a "private" fundraising event, he says: "There are 47 per cent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what... who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that the government has a responsibility to care for them."

But Obama has made gaffes, too - how come we don't hear much about those? His "private sector is doing fine" statement implied that American businessmen did not need help from the government during the quagmire of recession. Many, who have seen their livelihoods perish during Obama’s presidency would argue otherwise.

More recently, his impassioned and "you didn't build that" tirade ruffled many feathers. Here Obama stated how ‘If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own", reinforcing the state’s role in wealth creation.

Not only did this strike at the very heart of what Americans think of as a uniquely meritocratic society, but the whole statement used uncharacteristically brash language. This was a poor move when Obama’s greatest tool against Romney remains his statesmanlike sobriety - yet it was widely unreported here.

Romney’s policies should be better known, and herein lies the crux. Obama has put forward genuinely progressive bills during his four year tenure, whereas the challenger appears to have branded himself as a generic Republican with no unconventional ideas of his own.

Interviewed in July, Romney stated some of his key policies. He said it all came down to 'restoring economic freedom; that means keep our taxes as low as possible, have regulations modern and up-to-date, get healthcare costs down. These things will restore economic freedom, so my policies are very different from anything you’ve seen in the past.’

Actually, these policies sound pretty familiar, Mitt.

As long as this state of affairs continue, it will be Romney’s gaffes and Obama’s swagger that hog Fleet Street headlines.

But I guess British opinion is not Romney’s focus - he’s got 53% of Americans to represent.

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