The Romney campaign is partly built on the argument that Mr. Romney will balance the federal budget, because deficit spending is bad and leads to a weaker economy. And of course there is the moral argument about deficit spending, the implication being that people and governments that have to borrow are bad, bad, bad.
So it is with some amazement that it was just revealed that earlier this year the Romney campaign took out a $20 million loan from a nice accommodating Washington bank to finance their campaign when, amazing as it may seem, the Romney people were spending more than they had.
Even as it bragged about beating President Obama in fundraising over the summer, Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign was so low on cash that it ended up engineering an unusual $20 million loan to meet expenses until the former
governor was formally named as
the Republican nominee in late August, officials disclosed Tuesday. Massachusetts
The loan from the Bank of Georgetown, first reported Tuesday night by National Review Online and confirmed by a senior campaign official, provides a telling glimpse into previously unknown money troubles within the Romney camp over the summer. Romney has relied heavily on wealthy donors but has had persistent difficulty raising money among grassroots donors, who could have helped buoy his finances during the long summer before the Republican convention in
Now a large part of the problem here is somewhat ridiculous election financing laws that prevent a candidate from using general election contributions before the candidate is nominated. But note that even today the Romney campaign has not paid off the loan.
The campaign has paid back $9 million of the loan so far, with $11 million remaining on the debt side of the ledger, the senior campaign official said.
and also note that unlike in 2008, Mr. Romney is not willing to put a single dollar of his own considerable fortune into the campaign.
Romney, who loaned more than $40 million of his fortune to his 2008 bid, has not given his 2012 campaign any loans, officials said.
And while we have no reason why Mr. Romney has refused to invest his own funds, it is pretty easy to speculate that the wife and kids put their foot down, that they told Mr. Romney in no uncertain terms that if he wanted to run he wasn’t doing it on their dime.
In the final act, none of this is really important as far as the campaign is concerned. Outside spending will mean that Mr. Romney far exceeds the Obama campaign in funding ugly attack ads. And regardless of the outcome of the election no one will really care who spent what.
But the fact that Mr. Romney is willing to borrow money says a lot about his principles or lack thereof, and the fact that yes, he is willing to do anything or say anything to get elected.