So by now you've all seen that MoveOn.org anti-Romney ad, which gives a preview of the coming year in attack ads I fear. Now Reuters follows up on the story, painting an unsightly picture of the Kansas City steel mill's failed turnaround. My question is: How does Romney plan to respond to this thoroughly predictable line of attack?
Soon after, in October 1993, Bain Capital, co-founded by Mitt Romney, became majority shareholder in a steel mill that had been operating since 1888. It was a gamble. The old mill, renamed GS Technologies, needed expensive updating, and demand for its products was susceptible to cycles in the mining industry and commodities markets.
Less than a decade later, the mill was padlocked and some 750 people lost their jobs. Workers were denied the severance pay and health insurance they'd been promised, and their pension benefits were cut by as much as $400 a month.
What's more, a federal government insurance agency had to pony up $44 million to bail out the company's underfunded pension plan. Nevertheless, Bain profited on the deal, receiving $12 million on its $8 million initial investment and at least $4.5 million in consulting fees.
There’s no question that in his career, Romney has created wealth. But among the broader voting populace, no impression exists that he created jobs. He has to correct that by connecting the two - that by creating wealth and profit he created jobs elsewhere even as some companies died - before it defines him.
His campaign needs a better response than the one they’re currently giving, that’s for sure. Perhaps Romney should give a speech like Danny DeVito’s in Other People's Money?
It'd be a start, at least.