What can Mitt Romney possibly say today that will put a dent in Trump?

Mitt Romney is set to make a Very Serious Speech in Utah today about the “phony” and “fraud” who is “playing the American public for suckers.” The speech is being billed as the Republican establishment’s last best hope to put a serious rhetorical dent in Donald Trump before he blows Marco Rubio out of the water in Florida and locks up the Republican nomination.

He is not announcing a run of his own, nor is he endorsing any of the current Republican candidates.

Which leads one to wonder: What can Mitt Romney possibly say that will seriously damage the Bronzed Bomber?

Will the guy who refused to release his tax returns until late September of his election year — who even then only released one year of actual returns — call on Trump to make a similar show of transparency?

Donald Trump endorsing Mitt Romney in 2012, screenshot via YouTube

Donald Trump endorsing Mitt Romney in 2012, screenshot via YouTube

Will the guy who ran hard against Obamacare, a bill modeled after a law he himself championed at the state level in Massachusetts, accuse Donald Trump of being unprincipled on policy issues? After one of his top campaign aides in 2012 popularized the term “Etch-A-Sketch” in American politics?

Will the guy who insisted that negative five trillion plus “we’ll see” equaled a balanced budget say that Donald Trump doesn’t have a firm grasp of policymaking reality?

Will the guy whose immigration plan in 2012 was essentially to make life so difficult for brown people that they chose to leave on their own accuse Donald Trump of being a racist?

Will the patrician kazillionaire who described half the country as leeching takers who don’t want to better themselves accuse Donald Trump of being out of touch with the working man?

Will the guy who vigorously sought Donald Trump’s endorsement — knowing full well that Trump broke into Republican politics by championing a racist conspiracy theory — turn around and say that now, when he doesn’t need white nationalist votes, Donald Trump is not the kind of guy he’d want to have a beer with?

The answer to all of these questions is probably yes, which only prompts one followup:

What makes him think this will work?


Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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