During Tuesday night’s New Hampshire primary election coverage on the Fox News Channel, the senior political analyst Brit Hume had a message for Republican front-runner Mitt Romney: Figure out a way to explain capitalism, and his success in the private sector. And do it soon.
In his regular commentary segment, Hume doubted these attacks would get Romney’s competition very far. But they still may need an explanation.
“It is hard to imagine that the attacks by Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and Jon Huntsman on Mitt Romney’s role of as a venture capitalist will get them far with the Republican voters,” Hume said. “But that doesn’t mean they won’t damage Romney.”
“And it will provide fodder for similar attacks that have already started from the Obama camp. Romney will need answers and he’d be wise to start developing them now. Sure, a lot of voters get it that successful capitalism involves layoffs and other cost-cutting to make the businesses more efficient and profitable. They may even understand that profits are the purpose of a business and that jobs are a byproduct.”
Hume continued by explaining his interpretation of capitalism, which was one he suggested Romney should implement on the campaign trail.
“But that doesn’t mean they like it about the capitalism and it doesn’t mean they won’t be moved by the sound bites by people laid off in Bain’s restructuring of businesses,” Hume continued. “It has long been true and more so now in competitive world economy that businesses get as much productivity as possible out of as few workers as possible. So, for example, the manager of a Domino’s Pizza outlet — to mention one Bain company — will try to have a small staff. If that’s profitable, the company will use that model to open new outlets. So, the more it opens, the more people it must hire.”
“This is how hard-headed, even ruthless capitalists pursuing profit have become the greatest job creators the world has ever known. It is a story Mitt Romney needs to find a way to tell, and soon.”
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“I don’t think it will play well, as I suggested, with the Republican voters,” Hume added. “And Gingrich in particular seems to have attracted anger from important figures on the right. Rush Limbaugh today, for example, was down Gingrich’s smokestack on this, likening it to those attacks coming from Occupy Wall Street and, worst of all from a Republican point of view, from The New York Times. Even Ron Paul today was defending Gingrich against these attacks.
“So I don’t think they’re going to do these candidates much good and I suspect they may abandon them. I’m not sure about Newt Gingrich. He seems so angry at Romney that he may be willing to spend millions of dollars to continue this and he seems to have the millions from Las Vegas businessman Sheldon Adelson. So we’ll see.”