We got a glimpse of it during the debates. When confronted about his landscaping service by competitor Rick Perry, Mitt Romney nearly lost his temper.
Here’s the video:
Was last November an isolated incident or does it hint at a man who has trouble maintaining his cool when faced with confrontation? The Week profiles a man who has, on at least four occasions, let his temper get the best of him.
The first and worst time actually got him arrested.
This story first surfaced in Romney’s doomed 1994 bid to unseat Sen. Ted Kennedy, Kaczynski says: In 1981, Romney was putting the family boat into Lake Cochituate, an hour outside of Boston, when a park officer told him he couldn’t because the license looked painted over. If he launched, he’d face a $50 fine. “I was willing to pay the fine,” Romney told The Boston Globe. But the officer returned as Romney put the boat in and, visibly angry at being ignored, handcuffed Mitt, who was “dripping wet in a bathing suit,” and booked him for disorderly conduct. Romney contested the arrest in court, threatened to sue, and got the arrest dismissed and sealed. “He did not have the right to arrest me because I was not a disorderly person,” Romney told The Globe. Right, I guess “laws are [just] for little people and suckers, aren’t they?” says Kaili Joy Gray at Daily Kos.
The second incident was during the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, where he dropped a few “f-bombs” during a traffic snarl. The cursing was aimed into sheriff’s deputies (who he pushed) and even an 18-year-old volunteer. Incidentally, swear words are frowned upon by the Mormon church.
In 2007, he lost his temper with two radio hosts:
In March 2007, when he was starting his first bid for the GOP nomination, Romney met with about a dozen conservatives in Chicago. Things were cordial until talk-radio host Sandy Rios asked him about printing gender-neutral marriage certificates when he was governor of Massachusetts, Rios told MassResistance. “At that point Romney lost his temper” and accused me of lying, Rios said. “He asked if I was an attorney and I said, ‘No, sir, I am not.’ ‘I am a graduate of Harvard Law School,’ he stated.” It wasn’t the only time Romney got snippy with a radio host in 2007. Watch Romney get mad on video, via Politico:
Here’s the video:
In another altercation with Skyler Gordy of the band, LMFAO, Romney became very upset when Gordy refused to return his seat to an upright position. He even said Gordy “broke (his) hair.” Gordy said Romney put a “condor grip” on him and called him “hostile.”
Perhaps the deeper question is does it matter? Throughout history, many politicians have been known for their tempers. John McCain is famous for his temper. House Speaker, John Boehner has thrown a temper tantrum or two. A fiery Mitt Romney would stand in direct contrast to the cool and collected Barack Obama. The tea party was created from anger. I’m sure that many in the GOP base would welcome a leader who shares their emotion if not their interests. Look at how the right-wing swoons whenever New Jersey Governor Chris Christie verbally abuses a constituent.
The modern role of the Presidency is one of diplomacy. A President’s job includes working with world leaders, with Congress and with the American people. It would be one thing for a President to bully his way through Congress, but a temper tantrum thrown at a tenuous ally could be another. A temper could be the difference between war and peace.