Simon & Garfunkel, Thelma & Louise and Itchy & Scratchy have met their match in an unlikely duo that came to the forefront at the Republican National Convention.
That new duo is Clint Eastwood and Governor Mitt Romney.
“I remember three-and-a-half years ago when Mr. Obama won the election and, though I wasn’t a big supporter, I was watching that night when he was having that thing and they were talking about hope and change,” said Clint Eastwood in a speech for the RNC, “And they were talking about hope and change; and they were talking about, ‘Yes, we can,’ and it was dark outdoors and it was nice and people were lighting candles. I just thought this is great. I mean everybody is crying. Oprah was crying. I was even crying. I haven’t cried that hard since I found out that there’s 23 million unemployed people in this country. Now, that is something to cry for. That is a disgrace, a national disgrace.”
Eastwood’s speech at the RNC surprised many because of the candor with which he spoke, and the fervor that he generated from a crowd that was surprised to see him.
GOP strategist and CNN contributor Alex Castellanos said Eastwood “proved he cannot do improv. But he did something that is rare in politics. He made it socially acceptable to be able to laugh at Barack Obama.”
Romney’s speech that followed Eastwood’s focused on criticism of President Obama and his inability to create jobs.
“The President hasn’t disappointed you because he wanted to. The President has disappointed America because he hasn’t led America in the right direction,” said Romney. “He took office without the basic qualification that most Americans have and one that was essential to his task. He had almost no experience working in a business. Jobs to him are about government.”
In his speech, Romney harkened to a shared sense of perseverance in Americans and wanted the audience to know that he was going to be a better president.
“We are a nation of immigrants,” Romney said. “We are the children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the ones who wanted a better life, the driven ones, the ones who woke up at night hearing that voice telling them that life in that place called America could be better. They came not just in pursuit of the riches of this world, but for the richness of this life. Freedom.”
After Romney’s speech, a Gallup poll released on Sept. 3 indicates that four in ten adults say they are more likely to support Romney based on what they read or saw from last week’s convention in Tampa, Fla.
“I thought Romney’s speech was well crafted and showed that he is a good speaker, but he did not show me any great alternatives to the current economic problems that we have,” said sophomore Chris Ross.
Thirty-eight percent say they are less likely to vote for the Republican challenger and 22 percent say they did not know or the convention did not make any difference to their vote. These numbers are similar to John McCain’s numbers in 2008, and show that the Republicans may have some work to do before the election in November if they want a different result.
All in all, the RNC showed an intention to bring the fight to the Democrats this November. The Republicans did much to discredit the Democrats and had many Republicans thinking, “Do you feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?”