The Agenda

My Latest Column: Mitt Romney is a Nerd (and That is a Good Thing)

In my latest column for The Daily, I argue that Mitt Romney has been misunderstood by the public. As Radley Balko recently suggested, he has come to evoke the villain in a John Hughes film — the handsome preppie with a villainous heart. This is the candidate the president and his allies intend to run against. Yet Romney is better understood as the earnest and uncool hero of a John Hughes film, who is always keen to do the right thing but who is constantly undermined by his extreme social awkwardness. Rich Lowry, in a related vein, argues that Romney is “the last WASP,” for whom politeness and gentleness of spirit is often mistaken for stiffness and a lack of authenticity. I am somewhat more inclined than Rich to believe that Romney can turn his awkwardness into an advantage, but that remains to be seen.  

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