What is a politician?

Updated
 

Let me finish tonight with this.

What is a politician?

Is he or she someone who has the natural touch with people, someone who can get people to go along with them?  Or is it a person who will say anything to “get along?”  Someone who will hide their beliefs, their strongest commitments, in order to get people to like them? 

Now, think about who meets that first definition.  The person who can get other people to go along with them because he’s so good with people they find themselves liking what he or she says.  

Well, I’d say Bill Clinton.  Wouldn’t anyone?       

Now, think of that second definition: a politician being someone who will say anything, admit nothing about their beliefs in order to get people to accept them, who doesn’t want to lead voters, just get by them?

Mitt Romney.  Mitt Romney.  Mitt Romney.

I think this is the reason why he’s having so much trouble getting anyone excited about him.  He doesn’t like this thing, this campaigning, this asking people to vote for him.  He wants to be back in the boardroom where he can talk the way he normally talks - about having a couple of Cadillacs, about liking being able to fire people who don’t deliver for him, where he can rib somebody for wearing some cheap raincoat when he’s sporting something just right.

Look, this campaign is a real teaching moment, and not just for Republicans.  It’s teaching us all the way these candidates look at things: the way Ron Paul doesn’t believe in government, the way Newt Gingrich calls himself “cheerful” even as he basks in his imaginings of world calamity, the way Rick Santorum sees the dominion of religion over the state, the way Romney sees the country from a comfortable seat in the boardroom. 

Politics isn’t for everyone.  Some learn to lead.  Some learn to be led. 

Romney spends these days learning not how to lead the voter but struggling to “get by” him, and that has made all the difference.  It’s why President Obama, who has led this country through difficult times and taken the heat for tough decisions, will never be taken for a Mitt Romney.

Politicians, at their best, use their skills to lead.  They let you know who they are, not who they’re not, because only if you get to know someone - with all their faults - will you take their word on those matters important to us all. 

Hardball Let Me Finish

What is a politician?

Updated