Romney, Relaxed

by Katrina Trinko

Des Moines, Iowa — Score one for the White House: Mitt Romney ditched the skinny jeans for a tour around the Iowa State Fair today.

A Politico article earlier this week quoted Obama advisers outlining the personal attacks they planned to use against Romney in the general election, including that he is “weird” and that he has had makeovers (the switch to skinny jeans an LA Times piece noted earlier this year).

But today, Romney wasn’t weird. (He wore brown pants, for those curious.) In fact, he was surprisingly relaxed and comfortable as he greeted fair-goers. There was little awkwardness. He dealt easily with the huge media scrum that tailed him up and down the fairgrounds.

He guessed kids’ ages — and when he posed for pictures with kids, he did a one-knee kneel to be closer to eye level with them. (When one kid was joined by a taller sibling for the picture, Romney had to tweak his position to find a way to reach mid-height.) He signed photos of himself. He told a college student that what he offered college students was the prospect of a job awaiting them when they graduated. He asked people how they were doing, shaking plenty of hands. There was no suggestion that he was unemployed or jokes about his rear being pinched.

He met up with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa), and worked another pathway of fairgoers with him. They headed over to a tent selling pork, and barbecued together briefly. It’s hard to see, if Romney’s forays into retail politics continue in this vein, how Democrats’ “weird” label is going to stick.

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