The most interesting debates in the campaign's final weeks might not be between the two parties' candidates but between moderate Mitt Romney and severely conservative Mitt Romney. This was demonstrated by the flap over moderate Mitt's statement to the Des Moines Register yesterday that “no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.” That statement might sound reassuring to wavering voters worried that if the Republicans regain power, they will take the opportunity to restrict abortion rights. But much as moderate Mitt might want to calm these swing voters, severely conservative Mitt can't let moderate Mitt get away with that.
For one reason, it only takes about two seconds these days for anybody capable of doing a Google search to find statements by severely conservative Mitt that completely undermine the efforts of the new moderate Mitt. Take this video, for example (so far viewed by more than one-and-a-half million people), juxtaposing some new ideas from moderate Mitt against things that severely conservative Mitt said only a short time ago:
In the case of the Des Moines Register interview, it didn't take long to find that moderate Mitt's latest remarks on abortion are severely at odds with the statements of severely conservative Mitt, who has in fact pledged to sign pro-life legislation.
Another reason moderate Mitt won't be able to get away with some of the surprising stuff he is coming up with lately is that severely conservative Mitt's supporters won't let him. Especially on an issue as dear to social conservatives' hearts as abortion. They were quick to remind moderate Mitt of the pledges made by severely conservative Mitt on this issue.
So it wasn't surprising that it only took about two hours before a Romney campaign spokesperson advised the public that moderate Mitt had been overruled by severely conservative Mitt. “Governor Romney would of course support legislation aimed at providing greater protections for life," said Andrea Saul.
Well, it seems fair to ask, which Romney is candidate Romney asking people to vote for? Are voters going to get the guy who promised to lower tax rates across the board, including on the top 1%, or the guy who said he has no plans to reduce the tax burden on the wealthy? The guy who wants to fire more teachers and other public employees, or the guy who says we need more teachers? The guy who claims his health care plan will cover pre-existing conditions, or the guy who says we should not allow people to "play the game" like that? Stay tuned to find out whether moderate Mitt makes any headway in his ongoing battle with severely conservative Mitt.