Mitt on Mitt

Mitt Romney got off to a royal start Wednesday when he visited London.

On the eve of the Olympics, as The Washington Post reports, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee roundly implied that Britain isn’t ready to host the Olympics whereupon he so infuriated Prime Minister David Cameron that Cameron was forced to declare detractors like Romney will “see beyond doubt that Britain can deliver.”

After a meeting with Cameron later, Romney attempted to walk back his remark by expressing confidence that the Olympics will be successful, but no matter how you slice it, there’s no walking back ‘open mouth, insert foot’ and, more importantly, the former governor of Massachusetts merely showed how unprepared he is to become a figure on the world stage. Clearly, when Mitt Romney was talking about not being prepared, he was projecting.

And, as if that insult weren’t enough, Romney planned to attend a fundraiser last tonight with Barclay Bank executives. The Mittster is clearly aligning himself with the banksters of Europe.

For a candidate who has been remarkably diffident, and circumspect in his answers to questions by the press, one can’t help but wonder why he chose his first major foray across the pond as the venue for revealing who he really is?

Romney also tried to disengage himself from a comment made by “an unidentified Romney campaign adviser” that appeared in a Daily Telegraph story that suggests he touts the U.S.’s unique bond with Great Britain because both countries allegedly share an “Anglo-Saxon heritage.” For this, Mitt Romney, in the mainstream media, may quickly earn the moniker: Birther-in-Chief. Clearly, Mr. Romney needs more than someone named Talent to advise him.

After the White House weighed in on that one, the governor quickly denied saying that. But, given that he is a member of a party that has consistently questioned President Obama’s legitimacy for office, this appears to be more than a gaffe, but instead one of the few underlying beliefs held by a candidate who has been as demure about his belief system as his bank account.

This is just the beginning of a three-country trip that will also include a visit to Israel. Maybe it’s the water, having to cross the Atlantic Ocean, that is behind Romney’s sudden boldness, and lack of circumspection. He ought to travel abroad more often over the next few months as the more he talks, the more obvious it becomes that there is no place for Mitt Romney on the world stage.

Jayne Lyn Stahl is a widely published poet, essayist, playwright, and screenwriter, member of PEN American Center, and PEN USA.

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