Mitt Romney Fails to Charm Tea Partiers

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AMES, IA - AUGUST 11:  Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks during the Iowa GOP/Fox News Debate on August 11, 2011 at the CY Stephens Auditorium in Ames, Iowa. This is the first Republican presidential debate in the state ahead of Saturday's all important Iowa Straw Poll. (Charlie Neibergall-Pool/Getty Images)
AMES, IA - AUGUST 11: Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks during the Iowa GOP/Fox News Debate on August 11, 2011 at the CY Stephens Auditorium in Ames, Iowa. This is the first Republican presidential debate in the state ahead of Saturday's all important Iowa Straw Poll. (Charlie Neibergall-Pool/Getty Images) Photo: Pool/2011 Getty Images

Reportedly, the GOP candidate's Sunday appearance at a Concord, New Hampshire tea party rally didn't really win him any new fans. Perhaps it's because tea partiers like to get a little weird and Mitt Romney is totally not-weird. Case in point: Though he was greeted in Concord with everything from Sharon Angle to a "blunt" tea party symbol of "one stick figure shooting another under the heading 'socialism'" to a man dressed in a "Flip Romney" dolphin costume, the most Romney could muster was a lame zinger about not being a career politician. (“I spent four years as a governor; I joke that I didn’t inhale.)

Or maybe it was because his ten-minute speech was completely devoid of the words "tea" and "party." As attendee Jerry DeLemus told Politico, "I thought he'd pander more." Let's be fair here, Jerry — he just might not be programmed to do that.

Mitt Romney courts tea party movement — with a bit of distance [Washington Post]
Mitt Romney doesn't pander to N.H. tea partiers [Politico]