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Massachusetts Moderates for Mitt!

9:08 PM, Feb 27, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
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National Journal reports that a fundraiser for Mitt Romney, Christopher Jenny, is inviting donors opposed to "social arch conservative" Rick Santorum to a reception in support of a "Massachusetts moderate" for president:

An email sent Saturday by Christopher Jenny, president of the Boston-based Parthenon Group business consultancy, inviting potential donors to a Boston fundraiser, entreats them to help fight “social arch conservative Rick Santorum.”

“For those of you who are not offended by the idea of a ‘Massachusetts moderate’ in the White House, the opportunity to get involved is fleeting,” wrote Jenny, who has also donated to progressive Democrat Alan Khazei and was a George W. Bush bundler. National Journal obtained the email and attached invitation to the March 7 reception, which Jenny is co-hosting, from someone unaffiliated with the campaign.

As National Journal notes, Romney has worked hard to cast himself as a conservative during the race. He even called himself a "severely conservative governor" of Massachusetts at this year's CPAC. His opponents, most frequently Newt Gingrich, have tried to play up the "Massachusetts moderate" side of Romney's past, but as Fred Barnes pointed out in January, Romney has moved further right in this cycle:

On four of the biggest issues in 2012, Romney is anything but moderate—or timid. He gets no special credit for advocating repeal of Obamacare. That’s Republican dogma. But he’s been the most specific among the GOP presidential candidates in backing the Ryan budget in all its parts, including its remake of Medicare. It was House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s plan that Gingrich zinged as “right wing social engineering” before reversing himself under duress.

Still, there must be a reason a moderate Republican from Massachusetts (who gave $2,500 last year to liberal Democrat Alan Khazei's failed primary campaign in the race against Republican Scott Brown) is rallying his fellow moderates around the former governor. Why don't they believe Romney's the conservative he says he is?

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