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Obama agenda: Breaking bread with Romney

The Boston Globe: “In a meeting that has been weeks in the making, Romney will join President Obama for private lunch at the White House just 23 days after he lost the election. It will be the first time they have met since the election, and it follows several weeks in which Romney has started to contemplate life outside of politics. It marks both an early olive branch extended to a vanquished political rival and also is a potentially pivotal moment for Romney.”

How the meeting happened: “Just before Thanksgiving, the White House called Matt Rhoades, who was Romney’s campaign manager, to see if Romney would be interested in having lunch at the White House. Rhoades replied that he would, and the lunch started to be pieced together.”

The meeting is something of a tradition, beginning in 1960 when JFK met with Richard Nixon at his Key Biscayne, FL, home.

More: “Those close to Romney say he hasn’t decided yet what he wants to do next. He is planning to move into an office within Solamere Capital, a venture capital firm on Newbury Street that was co-founded by Romney’s oldest son, Tagg, and his finance chairman, Spencer Zwick. Former Romney advisers say that he is subleasing office space, but he has no plans to actually have a role within the firm. Still, the move does indicate that Romney is beginning to lay the groundwork for a Boston-based life after the presidential campaign.”

The AP: “White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama had no specific agenda for the meeting, but he said the president would like to discuss Romney’s ideas for making government more efficient.”

Politico: “Lunch is on the menu, but that’s probably about it. For President Barack Obama, the meal he’s having with Mitt Romney at the White House on Thursday is another important post-election, post-partisan moment. For Romney, it’s a chance to make sure his last impression on the political consciousness isn’t all about the word ‘gifts.’ But like most Washington rituals, the former rivals’ post-election get-together is expected to be more symbolism, less substance.”

The meeting also comes a day after top Romney adviser Stu Stevens labeled the sitting president, in a Washington Post op-ed, as “a charismatic African American,” who benefited from the support of minorities.

Jennifer Rubin, for one, wasn’t impressed with Stevens’ interpretation of the election: “Stevens fails in precisely the way in which the campaign failed: a refusal to acknowledge real and material incompetence by himself and others on the campaign. … Look, if understandably he still wants to keep charging large sums for his services and therefore not openly confess his mistakes, that is fine. But then don’t write a self-serving op-ed.”

By the way, the guy who got the Romney “R” logo tattooed to his face and vowed never to have it removed is going to be doing exactly that. The turning point for him were Romney’s post-election “gifts” comments. “It stands not only for a losing campaign but for a sore loser,” the man said. “He’s pretty shameful as far as I’m concerned, man. There’s no dignity in blaming somebody else for buying votes and paying off people. I can’t get behind that or stay behind that.”

Kids, let this be a lesson to you – it’s going to take seven to 10 sessions that doctors describe as painful to get that tattoo off his face.