Keller @ Large: Romney’s Hair A Campaign Problem?

BOSTON (CBS) – It was such a beautiful holiday weekend around here that, I admit, I let some of the presidential campaign news feed go by me without eating any.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

So I’m just now getting caught up with what the New York Times seemed to feel was the lead political story of the day on Friday – Mitt Romney’s hair.

No kidding, I am not making this up:

“Mr. Romney’s head of impeccably coiffed black hair has become something of a cosmetological Rorschach test on the campaign trail, with many seeing in his thick locks everything they love and loathe about the Republican candidate for the White House…. Privately, some Democratic strategists have seized on it as a physical manifestation of what they say is a deeper truth: Mr. Romney…is not like most Americans.


“A cosmetological Rorschach test”?

Whoever wrote this has made it impossible for anyone associated with the Times to ever again criticize the cheapening of our political discourse.

But since the Times believes Romney’s hair has become the subject of “unusually intense political speculation and debate,” let’s see what this debate is telling us about the candidate.

Romney’s barber tells the Times that his client’s hair color is natural, he does not use any product to keep it looking that way, and that he resists attempts to give him a more “stylish” look.

Romney is also tight with his grooming budget, says the barber, who reports Romney in the past has had his wife cut his hair, or even trimmed it himself.

“He is a very controlled man,” he says. ”The hair goes with the man.”

OK, so what have we learned about Romney here that’s so telling?

That he’s not all that vain, watches his spending closely in spite of his wealth, and trusts his wife to handle scissors around him?

I can see Romney’s hair generating a degree of envy, but even the Times quoted a voter calling it “presidential.”

Last time Romney ran, the Times notes, his own advisors admitted they saw his hair as a potential voter turnoff.

It turned out hair was well down the list.

This time, it might be among his better selling points.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

More from Jon Keller
  • roudydowdy

    I don’t care about the hair. I just want to know why his head doesn’t bob up and down a little when he walks. Every other human’s head bobs a little when they walk. If they made a bobble-head of Mitt Romney the whole world would shake while Mitt’s head grinned perfectly still.

  • Stephen Stein

    I think you’re about 8 years late to the party. The Times has been obsessing over candidates’ hair at least since Maureen Dowd penned the “Breck Girl” column about John Edwards in the 2004 campaign.

  • The Owl

    I believe that Jon was giving The Times the benefit of the doubt.

    Since there is the admission that this obsession is 8 years old, there should be the admission that The Times has flirted with irrelevance for eight years.

    Actually, it’s flirt with irrelevance has been extent for a much longer time.

  • tsal

    We are talking about hair when there is so much more that is amusing to discuss. From what I understand Cain is now vetting himself and has said he WILL BE accused of a long-term extramarital affair but he didn’t do it – no he didn’t – in other words he didn’t have $ex with that woman. I love when they come clean before the media can go after them.

    Great choices we all have.

  • Mahatab Ahmed

    Hair problems affect virtually all of us at some point in our lives, and they can cause us a fair amount of frustration! Whether it’s split ends, frizzy hair or dandruff, our hectic lifestyles and a temperamental climate tend to conspire against our hair, creating hair care issues which can seem to get the best of us unless we have the right advice on how to treat them.

  • JohnC

    I would take Romney’s hair any day! Can hair be successfully transplanted?

  • Jerry Howe

    I can assure you that Mitt Romney’s hair is darkened to cover grey. I am Romney’s age, grey haired, but I had a father who dyed his hair like Romney. It is very obvious to me
    Romney, true to character, is lying. This is indicative of the moral and corporate world he represents

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