Romney in 2002: I’m “Moderate,” “Progressive,” and “Not a Partisan Republican” [VIDEO]

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Mitt Romney says he’s a die-hard conservative. He says he’s not a flip-flopper. Yet…plenty of Republican voters don’t seem to believe him. They have plenty of reasons not to. As Romney has moved from Massachusetts politics to GOP presidential politics, he has famously reversed course on abortion rights, gun control, gay rights, and health care reform. And it’s all on video. Still, Romney keeps on denying any somersaults, but not convincingly. (See: Bret Baier.)

Now there’s new video out showing that Romnney has indeed pulled a 180 on his entire political persona. And it’s in Romney’s own words. In 2002, when he was running for governor in Massachusetts, he issued a strong declaration of his basic principles while campaigning in Worcester:

I think the old standby definitions of who votes for which party have been blown away in this campaign. I think people recognize that I’m not a partisan Republican—that I’m someone who is moderate, and that my views are progressive.

Here’s the worth-more-than-a-1,000-words clip:

A moderate, progressive, and nonpartisan Republican—that’s how Romney described himself just five years before first running for the Republican presidential nomination as a fierce conservative.

In his 2010 book, No Apology: The Case for American Greatness, Romney huffed, “progressives…rejected the notion of universal truths, objective judgments, and, ironically, progress itself, embracing neutrality among competing belief sets and rejecting the primacy of Western civilization, the great thinkers of the ages, and the principles espoused by the Founding Parents of the nation.” Yet Romney once proudly declared himself a fellow of progressive views. Maybe he should apologize.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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