Beam: Romney man of faith, character

By By Jim Beam / American Press

Dear Mitt Romney,

Before you fade into the sunset, a few final thoughts seem fitting and proper before we turn our attention to the serious

problems facing this great country.

You are a much better person than the

man who was so wrongly depicted during the presidential campaign. Most

Americans never

got to know the real Mitt Romney. Some of your finer qualities

emerged during the first presidential debate, but it was too

late to correct a false image of you so effectively created by

President Obama, the Democratic Party and some of your Republican

challengers for the GOP nomination.

Beth Reinhard said in a National Journal story, “Elected on hope in a season of despair, President Obama won his first term

by being the right guy at the right time. He won his second term making Mitt Romney the wrong guy.”

While you were fighting to secure the

Republican presidential nomination, Reinhard said an extremely effective

media blitz

by the Democratic opposition made your wealth and successful

business career a liability rather than an asset. Even your Republican

primary opponents used your wealth and social status to bash your

ability to identify with the problems of ordinary Americans.

Whit Ayres, a Republican pollster, wasn’t as nice as Reinhard. He said, “Obama won by thoroughly and completely trashing Mitt

Romney and his reputation. It is the classic definition of winning ugly.”

In fairness, it should be noted that

you made some serious mistakes and missed golden opportunities to

correct many of the

false impressions of your past and your business successes.

Perhaps your worst blunder was the statement that 47 percent of

Americans were looking for a handout, which Obama and MSNBC-TV

talked about repeatedly and which became the subject of a book.

The primary campaign also damaged you permanently when you talked about self-deportation of illegal immigrants. It helped

Obama receive over 70 percent of the Hispanic vote. Fawn Johnson talked about that in another National Journal story.

“... Sixty percent of Latino voters

know someone who is undocumented and 90 percent of them have parents or

grandparents who

emigrated from another country...,” Johnson said. “It

(self-deportation) referred to their parents, their aunts and uncles,

or their boyfriends and girlfriends.”

You said you would continue the president’s policy of deferring deportations of some young illegal immigrants, but it was

too late to improve your standing in the Latino community.

Your party was not your strongest asset, and shame on its conservative wing that never fully embraced your candidacy. In order

to secure its backing, you were forced to take unpopular stands on immigration and women’s issues that cost you dearly on

Election Day. And when your true beliefs emerged after you got the nomination, you were branded a flip-flopper.

We never had an opportunity to hear

about your many unselfish and caring acts over a lifetime of civic and

public service.

And maybe that is because your Mormon faith discourages

self-promotion. However, we wish you would have responded to the false

charges.

Obama made you out to be someone who

was only interested in enhancing his own prosperity. We heard about the

plants that were

closed by Bain Capital when you were a company official and the

people who were laid off as a result. But we were never told

about those businesses and jobs that were saved by Bain Capital

when all of them might have had to close their doors.

The opposition criticized you for failing to give the voters details about your agenda, but Obama didn’t offer an agenda either

until days before the election. And even that was just so much colorful fluff.

The cold, hard fact is many voters

don’t want to hear the real truth because it would require individual

sacrifices they aren’t

prepared to make. You and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, your

running mate, took a lot of heat over your calls for a Medicare

solution. The health care program needs to be fixed, but a

majority says leave Medicare alone.

The main purpose of this letter, Mr. Romney, is to let you know there are over 62 million people in this country who still

believe you have the ability, intellect, proven track record and impeccable character that would serve this country well.

Unfortunately, 65 million other Americans decided to go in a different direction.

We respect the decision of the majority and hope President Obama — and Congress — over the next four years can deliver what

they didn’t accomplish over the last four years. The country desperately needs bipartisan leadership in order to solve our

debt and employment problems and to restore our status as a leader of nations.

Meanwhile, our prayers and best wishes go with you and your family. Please continue to work for your country’s best interests.

The United States of America needs the talents of men like you who have faith and who are dedicated to putting the welfare

of the country above their own.

Thanks for the time and energy you gave to the campaign. We know your main goal was to serve your country as you have done

so many times in the past. You didn’t win, but getting to know you has been a rewarding and inspirational experience. May

God’s blessings go with you.

•••

Jim Beam, the retired editor of the American Press, has covered people and politics for more than five decades. Contact him at 494-4025 or jbeam@americanpress.com