Katie Couric: “You said if you were to have run this time [for president] it would have been a very different campaign, how so? How would it be different this time?”
Mitt Romney: “I would spend a great deal of time taking my message to Hispanic Americans and to other minority groups in this country, African Americans, Asian Americans and describing why it is that conservative principles are best for them and for their families, that’s something I wish I would have spent a lot more time doing…
We would have taken ad dollars as well and responded to some of the attacks that came our way, some of them by the way were below the belt…there were things that were said in some of the ads that came against us in Hispanic media but also in English media that were not accurate and we should have fought back harder against those things, and shut them down and made it loud and clear that those things were wrong….but I will be talking with our nominee about the mistakes I made and suggesting things that he or she ought do differently than I did…. but the real thing that I wish I had done differently is make a greater effort at communicating to minority voters in this country the policies that I think are right to help minority families and that’s without question the biggest mistake I made in the campaign.”
The above exchange was taken from an interview Katie Couric, of Yahoo News, recently did with former presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Over the past two years, America has begun to see the Mitt Romney that should have been shown during the 2012 elections. If the “real” Romney was shown, he would be president right now.
I was very critical of Romney’s 2012 campaign for president in my columns. I criticized his campaign for the dearth of Blacks on staff. The couple of Blacks they finally added to the campaign were totally in over their heads. They did more damage than good. They had no authority, power, or connection to the Black community.
Blacks are totally disillusioned with Obama and the Democratic Party. Blacks are begging the Republican Party to give them a reason to vote Republican in the next election. Philosophically the Republican Party is in synch with the Black community on issues like family values, traditional marriage, lower taxes, education, and entrepreneurship.
Blacks simply don’t believe the Republican Party want them involved in their party, philosophy notwithstanding. Republicans are horrible when it comes to messaging toward the Black community. The biggest shock in Romney’s interview was that he would have spent money in Black media if he had decided to run again.
To this day, none of the would be Republican presidential candidates have any Blacks on staff, as a consultant, or as an adviser. They all “talk” diversity, but it is never backed up by their actions. It’s not enough to go to a Black university, with an all-White staff, and lecture students about Civil Rights.
I have had the privilege of spending some intimate time with Romney at the Utah home of our good mutual friends Scott & Karen Keller. Romney is one of the most decent people you will ever meet. With his recent TV appearances, America is even beginning to see that Romney has a great sense of humor to go along with all of his intellect.
Right before the eyes of the American people Romney is metamorphosing from a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly. He is becoming an elder statesman within the party. Quietly as it’s kept, there are many people from all levels of the party seeking Romney out for his guidance and counsel.
If all those would be Republican presidential candidates are smart, they would heed Romney’s advice regarding the Black community. They should hire “real” Blacks for their staff now; not Blacks who want to remain invisible or have disdain for their own community (ala Obama). They should fully utilize the Black press—there are 205 Black owned newspapers in the U.S.
How can anyone take a Republican seriously about wanting to be president in 2016 when his staff looks like 1916? I have made a commitment not to vote, give money to, or raise money for any Republican candidate whose staff doesn’t reflect America.
And to Romney, it’s not too late for you to engage with the Black community. The Black community is open to the message you have to share, especially regarding entrepreneurship.
The poet George Bernard Shaw once stated, “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”
So, to Mitt Romney I say, please be “unreasonable” enough to join me in my 25 year battle to make our Republican Party look like America.