Mitt’s missing gifts

Mitt’s right. Obama won because of “gifts.”

Okay, maybe Mitt was trying to say President Obama bought the election, so I guess he wasn’t really right. The gifts I am talking about come at birth or are developed in one’s upbringing. I am talking about gifts like empathy, compassion and charisma.

Those are gifts that Mitt was shortchanged on. It wasn’t Mitt’s fault, he had a privileged upbringing. When Mitt thinks about healthcare, education and other human needs, he is only thinking of the bottom line. That’s the gift Mitt brings to the table. If you are a shareholder in a business then you want Mitt Romney at the helm, he will look out for your interests. Your profit margin will be more important than the needs of the people who do the work that fattens your bank accounts.

In case you haven’t heard, in a conference call with big donors yesterday, Mitt Romney blamed his loss on President Obama giving “gifts” to constituencies.

From The Times’ report: “With regards to the young people, for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest was a big gift,” Mr. Romney said. “Free contraceptives were very big with young, college-aged women. And then, finally, Obamacare also made a difference for them, because as you know, anybody now 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents’ plan, and that was a big gift to young people. They turned out in large numbers, a larger share in this election even than in 2008.”

The president’s healthcare plan, he said, was also a useful tool in mobilizing black and Hispanic voters. Though Mr. Romney won the white vote with 59 percent, according to exit polls, minorities coalesced around the president in overwhelming numbers: 93 percent of blacks and 71 percent of Hispanics.

“You can imagine for somebody making $25,000 or $30,000 or $35,000 a year, being told you’re now going to get free healthcare, particularly if you don’t have it, getting free healthcare worth, what, $10,000 per family, in perpetuity – I mean, this is huge,” Mr. Romney said. “Likewise with Hispanic voters, free healthcare was a big plus. But in addition with regards to Hispanic voters, the amnesty for children of illegals, the so-called Dream Act kids, was a huge plus for that voting group.”

Mitt thinks that when President Obama fought to allow young adults to stay on their parents’ healthcare plans that he was “gifting” them in exchange for their vote. You see Mitt didn’t “have” to pay for his healthcare when he was in school or just starting out. I’m not saying that he didn’t pay. I would have to see his tax returns to know, but if Mitt got sick when he was young, he didn’t have to go without healthcare because his parents could afford the best doctors money could buy. Most of us understand that the people who will be staying on their parents’ healthcare plan need to be there. For many people, no insurance means suffering through illnesses because they can’t afford a visit to the doctor. It wasn’t a bribe Mitt, it was a promise delivered.

When it comes to interest rates on student loans, I don’t think George Romney charged interest to Mitt. That is, if Mitt ever borrowed money from his dad as he suggested to students as a way to start a business. That lack of empathy explains why Mitt thinks that relief on student-loan interest rates is a bribe. In my opinion, Obama did not go far enough on student loans, but if he wanted to buy votes he would have given everyone a Pell grant.

Mitt also thinks that immigrants and minorities think that Obamacare was a handout to them. He expressed that attitude in his famous 47% speech. Mitt wrote minorities and young people off months ago, Obamacare was again a promise kept. It is not free healthcare. Young people who are not on their parents’ plan have to buy in. The mandate is not popular with young people, but they didn’t see anything better from Romney and Ryan.

The timing of the action on Dream Act may have been suspect. To be fair though, Obama supported the Dream Act and tried to get it through Congress before this year. Again a promise kept. Obama didn’t keep all his promises to immigrants, besides, those taking advantage of the Dream Act didn’t vote, they are on a path – but not citizens yet.

I don’t think the actions that Mitt Romney cited in his call with major donors were “gifts” from Obama, they were promises kept. We all know who would be getting “gifts” if Mitt Romney won the election. Many of them were on that conference call.

Scott Galindez was formerly the co-founder of Truthout, and is now the political director of Reader Supported News. This is republished from Reader Supported News. Photo: Ten thousand Obama campaign volunteers celebrate the president’s re-election at Chicago’s McCormick Place, Nov. 6 (PW/Teresa Albano).