Mitt Romney’s real NASCAR gaffe: mocking ponchos as “fancy raincoats”

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At the Daytona 500 on Sunday, Mitt Romney's humanity-mimicking A.I. software malfunctioned yet again. The GOP front-runner told the Associated Press that he doesn't follow NASCAR "as closely as some of the most ardent fans, but I have some great friends who are NASCAR team owners." (Mitt Romney! He has friends! Just like us!)

The comment, which came days after informing Detroit voters that his wife "drives a couple of Cadillacs," instantly sent Twitter into overdrive, so to speak. But another Romney comment from Daytona — reported by the New York Times — gained far less viral attention:

[T]he crowd initially booed Mr. Romney, who occasionally struck a discordant note, as when he approached a group of fans wearing plastic ponchos. “I like those fancy raincoats you bought,” he said. “Really sprung for the big bucks.”

It's one thing to absent-mindedly boast about your wealth and connections, but ribbing people for their inexpensive rain gear just seems… um… dickish? Beyond the terrible 1% vs. 99% optics, it's plain bad manners. Hey, money can't buy you class.

On Fox News Sunday, Romney defended his recent wealth-related gaffes: "If people think there’s something wrong with being successful in America, then they better vote for the other guy. Because I’ve been extraordinarily successful, and I want to use that success and that know-how to help the American people." With trickle-down economics, we won't have to worry about raindrops trickling down on our cheap riffraff plastic.