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Lawrence O’Donnell Is Very Troubled By Mitt Romney And Rick Perry Using Nicknames

The “Rewrite” segment of The Last Word is typically the home of Lawrence O’Donnell‘s most poignant political statement of the night, in which to call out hypocrisy or attack injustice. Today, however, O’Donnell dedicated the segment to a personal pet peeve: “guys who don’t want you to know their first names,” like Willard “Mitt” Romney and James “Rick” Perry.

“I’ve always felt funny about guys who don’t want you to know their first names,” O’Donnell argued, noting that the two Republican frontrunners were lying with the first words they used: “‘Hi, I’m Mitt Romney’– no, you’re not!” He noted that the first name “Willard” was bad luck of the draw, definitely, but “I’ve got no idea what James or Jim Perry doesn’t like about his first name.” In fact, it gave O’Donnell an excuse for a bizarre confession: “That’s why I’ve been using ‘Jim’ as my Starbucks name for years now!” This he does as a service to baristas, as “I would never ask them to try to write an eight-letter name on my Starbucks cup”– a noble effort, as some of us with seven-letter phonetically androgynous names exhibit no such mercy. In any case, O’Donnell’s point with the story was that his alter ego, “Jim,” exists only in Starbucks, as “everywhere else, I endure life with a first name that I don’t really like because not using my first name just seems too phony to me.”

What’s more, authenticity may actually help Romney, O’Donnell argued. If Americans elected a Millard and a Ulysses and a Franklin– and even a Barack– why would they prefer a “Mitt” to a “Willard”?

If you read this far expecting some sort of ideological point to this segment, you will be disappointed, as O’Donnell simply wanted to make the point that using false names was strange to him, and possibly bad campaign strategy– unless you’re getting something at Starbucks.

The strange segment via MSNBC below:

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