Is Christie's 'Jersey Style' Misogyny Helping Romney Or Turning Off Voters?

Mitt Romney is trying hard to combat the perception of his elitist, well-heeled upbringing in the age of 99 percent protests. Why, he wants you to know he's a man of the people, not a ruthless corporate raider or soulless automaton. Pay no attention to his nine-figure bank account, his multiple mansions and privileged childhood. So he rolls up the sleeves of his button-down shirts, restrains himself from pressing creases into his denims, and lets his carefully-coiffed hair get just slightly mussed. Obviously, that gives him the cred to hang out with Jersey tough Gov. Chris Christie, who likes to go "Jersey Style" at campaign events to prove what a big, tough guy he is:

On Sunday, Jan. 8., New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was speaking at a Romney for President rally in New Hampshire when he was interrupted by some female hecklers. It’s difficult to make out exactly what Christie’s critics were yelling, but it’s something to do with jobs going down. Ever the class act, Christie’s response: “You know, something may be going down tonight, but it ain’t going to be jobs, sweetheart.” He then goes on to insult the women by saying that if they were from Jersey, they wouldn’t be so silly as to think that his policies don’t support job creation.

Because nothing says "Vote for Romney!" than condescendingly referring to NH females as "sweetheart", "girls", make thinly veiled allusions to fellatio and to cap it off, insinuate that they are not as smart as New Jersey females. Does Mittens think this shores up his "regular Joe" vote? Gawker:

The question is: Does this stuff "work" for Mitt Romney, having a surrogate whom the Christian Science Monitor describes as "the larger-than-life governor" step forward in some sort of bodyguard-hitman role for the Massachusetts Moderate? It seems to remind Republican voters of how weak the field is: They couldn't get their cherished New Jersey monster to come and yell at liberal ladies and unionized teachers in his own campaign for President of the United States; instead he just throws out a couple of Jersey lines to make the Romney go down easier. Sigh.

Honestly, this isn't going to help Mitt any more than it's winning over more supporters in Christie's home state, where the local editorial page beseeches Christie to find his inner Alan Alda:

Christie knows his belittling of town hall critics has made him a YouTube sensation. It attracts a national spotlight and he's good at it. In this case, he has every right to shoot back at this heckler. But he misfires. He picks two words, in a macho, pat-the-little-girl-on-the-head tone, that grate on the majority of women.

"Sweetheart" is patronizing. In an intimate context, it's a pet name. In any other context, it's a putdown.

Amazing that most media coyly avoids the "going down" reference and focuses solely on the paternalistic verbiage. Seems like that's the clincher in the misogyny sweepstakes.


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