Please read Part 1 of my Election '08 article on Mitt Romney to get the full analysis
While Mitt Romney's change from moderate Republican to full-blown conservative left a sour taste in the mouth of Massachusetts citizens, only time will tell if the Republican base in early primary states will ultimately accept this "new" right-wing Romney as one of their own. If this recent Rasmussen survey means anything, the upside for Romney going forward is not good, as he is tied with Hillary Clinton at 47% for having the highest level of "core opposition" among voters, meaning they won't vote for him no matter how bad the other choices are.
Perhaps some of those absolutely negative feelings towards him contributed to his somewhat disappointing "Silver Medal" finish in Iowa Thursday night. After leading Iowa for much of the primary season, voters only gave him 25% of their votes, as opposed to the 34% they gave to the other former governor in the race, Hope, Arkansas's Mike Huckabee. New Hampshire though, whose primary is next week, has Romney and John McCain in a dead heat atop the latest polls, so maybe those potential voters are loyal to Romney or fail to understand how unprincipled and untrustworthy a candidate he really is.
For example, on Meet The Press a couple of weeks ago, one minute Romney said the 12 million illegals in this country should not have to go home and should be able to sign up for citizenship. The next minute, he said a "great majority" of them should go home. Furthermore, the Boston Globe pointed out that in 2005, he said McCain, President Bush and other proponents of immigration reform bills didn't have his full endorsement but were "reasonable proposals" that were "quite different from amnesty." By 2007, as the paper pointed out, he called the McCain-Kennedy bill "amnesty" and rejected it outright.
Romney has also taken both sides of the embryonic stem cell debate and become a hypocrite on pardons. The candidate brags that he didn't pardon one criminal as governor out of respect for jury verdicts, not even for a decorated Iraqi veteran who was charged with shooting (but not really injuring) a kid with a BB gun in his youth.
As bad as that is, he now thinks former White House aide "Scooter" Libby deserves a full pardon by President Bush based on a false belief that prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald abused his power and nailed the wrong guy during his investigation of who was criminally responsible for leaking the identity of former CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson to the media in 2003. Libby was convicted early in 2007 on 4 of 5 counts for obstructing justice, committing perjury and providing false statements to federal officials. Bush however, thought the prison sentence was too harsh a punishment so he used his executive power to commute (or kill) it, but did not fully pardon him. Gotta love Romney's priorities: pardon the White House war hawk but not an actual veteran of the Iraq war.