The Buck Starts Here

W. Mitt Romney had quite a day in Great Britain yesterday!

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Before his arrival things were looking a little shaky.

His foreign policy team was in full retro-mode talking about Anglo-Saxon history and threats from the Soviet Union.

Romney delivered his foreign policy speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars and failed to mention Al Qaida one time. The speech was panned across the spectrum of political views, excepting the neo-cons, as being devoid of ideas.

When criticized because Romney has not delivered specifics on what his Afghanistan policy is, the reply from Team Romney was that “real Americans” don’t care about his Afghanistan policy.

Not good signs.

But Mitt Romney organized the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics so certainly his arrival in London as the games opened would go well for him.

Instead misstep after misstep generated the comment that Mr. Romney’s charm offensive was “devoid of charm and mildly offensive” and the two-page headline “Who Invited this Party Pooper”.

The Twitter hashtag RomneyShambles exploded onto the scene delivering a healthy mix of reporting and jokes at Mr. Romney’s expense.

Maybe his goal was to force President Obama to apologize for him, so Romney could criticize Obama for apologizing?

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Or perhaps it was all a distraction so that we would not notice that W. Mitt Romney was raising money overseas, organized by a banker at the center of the Libor scandal.

That’s right. After Mitt was done insulting the country’s preparations for the Olympics, forgetting names, exposing spies and inspiring quotes like “apparently devoid of charm, warmth, humor or sincerity, “worse than Sarah Palin” and “total car wreck”, Romney moved on to cashing campaign checks from bankers and lobbyists who are at the center of the rate-fixing scandal.

Libor (The London Interbank Offered Rate) is essentially a poll of banks that is used to measures the confidence of the financial system. That measure is used in the U.S. derivatives market and influences interest rates. Manipulation of the Libor rates is a crime – it is essentially gaming the system to benefit the banks.

No stranger to financial manipulation, apparently W. Mitt Romney does not have a problem with the activities of these bankers and lobbyists. They favor Romney’s plan to repeal Dodd-Frank and essentially give bankers all the freedom that created the global financial crisis.

The bankers are not fans of the consumer protections and much-needed regulations that President Obama has put in place, nor do they like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau the Administration has put in place.

To his credit, Romney did create so many distractions that his fundraiser was mostly overlooked. Now he can go about visiting with his ballet horse and all the money he has parked in Europe.

Let’s hope the rest of Mr. Romney’s trip goes better. Two pieces of advice for Team Romney: he ought not discuss posthumous baptisms in Israel and avoid offensive jokes in Poland.

About Bill Buck

Bill Buck is a Democratic strategist, President of the Buck Communications Group, a media relations and new media strategies consulting business based in Washington, DC, and Managing Director of the online ad firm Influence DSP. He has over twenty years of international and national communications experience. The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of CBS Local.

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