TAMPA -- When Mitt Romney stands before the Republican National Convention and the nation Thursday night, he has to come across as both old Mitt and new Mitt.
Before he started his presidential journey five years ago, Romney was regarded as an easy conversationalist and collegial guy. Since then, he has come off as cautious, perfectly pressed, and prepared, a man who can make even a moment such as his “surprise” embrace of his wife on the convention stage after her speech Tuesday seem cold and scripted.
Romney’s mission is to appear as warm as his wife painted him in her address that evening. He needs to slay the image that Democrats have been crafting for months — and he has inadvertently helped along — that he’s an insensitive, out-of-touch business executive with little feel for the plight of those who aren’t in his economic or social class.