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‘Mitt’ Offers Fascinating Look at Romney’s Presidential Campaigns

Leading Conservatives Attend 40th Annual CPAC
Alex Wong/Getty

If you are interested in politics and you have Netflix, the Mitt Romney documentary will definitely be of interest to you.

‘Mitt’ follows the Romneys during Mitt Romney’s 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns and provides an inside look at how decisions were made by Romney, thoughts about other politicians, and the family support he had around him.

The film shows the decision-making process Romney and his family went through in 2007 to decide whether to run for president or not.  The decision process showed the family’s desire to see Romney get into the White House and lead the nation, but it also displayed some of the resentment and displeasure about the road to the White House.

In watching the documentary, it felt like the former Massachusetts governor and his family did not want to run for president and would have been satisfied not being commander-in-chief.  But you also saw that the family felt it was necessary for the nation to have Romney as president.

It was also commented during the documentary by Romney that the election process makes it difficult for qualified candidates to become interested in becoming president.

Viewers also got a look at Romney’s perspective of the 2008 primaries, with Romney’s objections to the number of debates in the primary process and even the format of the WMUR/ABC debate in Manchester, NH.  Even more interesting, you see Romney’s campaign also contending with the rising star of Barack Obama, seeing why he was being successful, and tried to apply that message to his own campaign.

But it became apparent to his campaign in 2008 that Senator John McCain would become the Republican nominee, despite knowing and asserting that he was the candidate the nation needed in 2008.  It was noted by others around the former governor that McCain was the Republican “next in line” for the nomination and that if that logic applied in 2012, Romney would have to be the nominee.

The film continues to Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign against now-sitting President Barack Obama and the pair’s first two debates.  The documentary highlighted the nerves Romney had going into debates and some of his debate prep with Senator Rob Portman.  It also showed how his family and supporters reacted to the debate immediately after, offering honest thoughts on how the Republican handled himself.

‘Mitt’ also highlights the personal difficulties of running for any political office, especially one like President.  Romney personally noted the difficulty and strain of doing fundraisers and events where he can’t be himself.  Even one of Romney’s sons had a difficult time expressing how he really felt about the situation around his father’s campaign.  Both of these offer an incredibly interesting peek at how politicians and their families operate when not in front of a microphone.

One of the most notable parts of the film, maybe even the highlight of the entire documentary, is when Romney asked his family how one even writes a concession speech as they find out that the Republican will not win the White House.  While it was apparent throughout the entire film that Romney had an uphill battle, it’s unclear if the family thought there was no shot of an Obama reelection or if Romney just didn’t have time to think about a concession speech.

Even more fascinating was the debate over the speech itself.  In a way, it tells the entire story of the Romney campaign in one discussion: should Romney make his speech be about how he really feels about the state of the nation with Obama as president or should it be a muzzled, make-nice speech?

‘Mitt’ is an incredibly fascinating sneak peek into a presidential campaign.  Though while feeling thin at times, this documentary is a must-watch for anyone who has an interest in politics or are curious about the election process and those involved in it.



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