In choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney passed up a much more strategic choice.
All political organizations to the left of George W. Bush are sending out appeals to their members for help in stopping what People For the American Way calls “the Koch brothers’ dream ticket.”
And the right wing is jumping with joy.
If both sides are going to do that anyhow, why not ante up and choose the real dream partner, Sheldon Adelson?
What Romney most needs to show right now is that he has a mind of his own. The right wing and Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal have been pressuring him to choose Ryan; why better way for Romney to show his mind of his own that to choose someone else who wasn’t even mentioned as a possible running mate?
Adelson has already proven himself a loyal Romney partner: he was at Romney’s side during their recent trip to Israel, and didn’t utter a word for public consumption. That is most unlikely for Ryan, who loves to sound off about his economic priorities and might even upstage Romney even on astage of Romney’s own choosing.
As the ideal representative of the party of big business, Adelson is a successful entrepreneur—so much so that people would stop complaining about Romney’s paltry $200,000,000+ fortune amassed in hedge fund activities, with a little help from the US tax system.
Think of the funding a Romney-Adelson team would get from Adelson, who singlehandedly financed Newt Gingrich’s primary campaign. If Adelson donated just 10% of his fortune as the 8th richest American to the Romney-Adelson campaign or its “independent” friends, that would come to two billion and a half dollars, surely enough to buy any office in the world.
Ah, but Adelson, who celebrated his 79th birthday on August 4, is too old, you say. That’s another advantage: Romney, who is gambling all right now on Ryan, will never be able to get rid of him or the Republican hard right wing (remember how George H. W. Bush wanted to retire Dan Quayle after one term but wasn’t allowed?).
Did you notice that coincidence? Adelson and Obama have the same birthday, August 4, exactly 28 years apart. Great symbolism: Adelson, the new Obama. So much for that Democratic “forward” motto!
And, as a near-octogenarian nearly twice Ryan’s age, Adelson could rally senior citizens (at least, those who don’t care about Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid).
Furthermore, unlike four years ago, no one could accuse Romney of choosing Adelson for any intimation of shallow sex appeal.
And then, Adelson could rally the gambler vote, a vast swathe of Americans. All happy customers of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation and Venetian Macao Limited should be Adelson fans; he could even put up “independent” advertising in all his casinos and hotels.
Adelson, who started out as a Democrat, has like Romney been moving to the right as he grew wealthier. Very good symbolism!
As part of Adelson’s political evolution, “‘Why is it fair that I should be paying a higher percentage of taxes than anyone else?” he once asked,’ according to Wikipedia. That perfectly frames one of the biggest issues of the year, doesn’t it? The question could just be updated to “Why is it fair that I should be paying the same percentage of taxes as everyone else?”
So there’s the dream team. Too bad, they missed their chance. Now they’ll be sorry.