In a taped interview scheduled to air this weekend on Fox News Sunday, 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney and his wife Ann said the end of the presidential race was like getting off a roller coaster. Months on the campaign trail – both in the primary and the general election – has often been said to be essential in helping future presidents prepare for the rigors of living in the White House; but little is typically said about the impact it has on the other guy and his family. What’s it like for the losing candidate when the Secret Service, the massive staff, and the time-crunched schedule go away?
In the aforementioned interview with Chris Wallace, the Romneys apparently said it was like “We were on a roller coaster, exciting and thrilling, ups and downs. But the ride ends. And then you get off. And it’s not like, oh, can’t we be on a roller coaster the rest of our life? It’s like, no, the ride’s over.”
“In our church, we’re used to serving and you know, you can be in a very high position, but you recognize you’re serving. And now all of a sudden, you’re released and you’re nobody,” she said. “And we’re used to that. It’s like we came and stepped forward to serve. And you know, the other part of it was an amazing thing, and it was really quite a lot of energy and a lot of passion and a lot of — a lot of people around us and all of a sudden, it was nothing.”
The brief clip Fox News has released also shows Governor Romney discussing a bit of politics – from sequestration to the administration’s decision to release detained illegals. While he’s done the admirable thing and distanced himself (publicly) from post-election hot button issues, it does appear the former GOP nominee has been paying close attention. Frankly, if the 70-second clip can be a measure, he looks like he’s ready for another round of debates.
I have no idea what the rest of the interview looks like. We’re talking about a combined three minutes of video Fox News has released. The rest could be spent talking about his Jolly Ranchers and soda pop for all I know. That said, President Obama has stayed very much in campaign mode, so it would only seem natural that his opponent from the general election would remain in a similar posture. How many times have you heard the president remind us that “a majority of the American People agreed with him?” That, at least, implies that they disagreed with Governor Romney. Human nature alone would incite some push-back.
But considering this president now supports “closing tax loopholes” as an effective tool for revenue generation – a position he rejected in the campaign when Romney raised it – and the fact that sequestration is on our doorstep – even though the president strongly rejected Romney’s assertions in debates that it represented a failure of leadership and would ultimately come to fruition – how could Romney not have a few criticisms for the guy that edged him out for the office he was seeking?
I rarely actually look forward to the Sunday political news shows – even though I admittedly watch them religiously; but this one’s going to be an exception. Part of me wishes another network – and not Fox News – landed the exclusive interview. The state of things being as they are, the only people likely to see the sit down are going to be those that voted for him in November. An ABC, NBC, or CBS appearance may have led some to feel a bit of buyer’s remorse. While that certainly wouldn’t change anything, I’m not ashamed to admit I would have really enjoyed the thought of knowing some “moderates” out there would have to watch an interview with the only guy that could have made the last two months feel different than the last four years.