Voters prefer "Moderate Mitt," but he doesn't really exist

Over the last week, Mitt Romney has made a concerted effort to appear reasonable, moderate, and bipartisan. It's something he's very good at -- in fact, he's made an entire political career out of being all things to all people -- and voters seem to like the act. The question is, who is the real Mitt Romney and what does he believe? Unfortunately, nobody knows.

During last week's debate, Romney broke with his own positions to portray himself as a moderate. But back on the campaign trail, he seems to be having a hard time remembering exactly what his stance is. For example, after Romney said in June that we shouldn't hire firefighters, police officers, and teachers, he claimed in the debate that he absolutely did want to hire more teachers. A week later, though, he had apparently changed his mind again:

He wants to hire more school teachers. We all like school teachers. It's a wonderful thing. Typically, school teachers are hired by states and localities, not by the federal government. But hiring school teachers is not going to raise the growth of the U.S. economy over the next three-to-four years.

Romney doesn't think hiring teachers -- giving more people a middle-class profession and helping our kids succeed -- will help the economy? I guess that's what you'd expect from a plutocrat that thinks what our economy really needs is more hedge-fund managers. So is that the real Romney? Or is Moderate Mitt the real one?

Abortion is another issue that has him confused. Last week, Moderate Mitt claimed he didn't want to implement an anti-abortion agenda -- another break from his previous statements. Campaign officials walked back his comments within hours. On reproductive rights, Moderate Mitt was just a brief mirage. And those are just two examples; I could go on.

I don't know what Romney really believes. I do know that if he wins, it won't be Moderate Mitt in the White House. Romney will defer to Congress, where the severely-conservative House Republicans will be in charge. Romney made too many promises to Tea Party Republicans; they'll never let Moderate Mitt show himself. No matter which Mitt is the real one, I guarantee you we'll never see Moderate Mitt again.

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