'Romnesia': Can Obama convince voters that Romney can't be trusted?

The president's new zinger is trending. Whether it has staying power is another question

President Obama has a new diagnosis for his GOP challenger's shifting positions: Mitt Romney has a serious case of "Romnesia."
(Image credit: Dennis Van Tine ./Retna Ltd./Corbis)

The video: At a Virginia rally on Friday, President Obama blasted Mitt Romney for apparently forgetting the conservative policies he espoused in the GOP primaries as he tries to appeal to independents in the general election. Obama's diagnosis: Mitt has "Romnesia." (See the video below.) Obama said the affliction is particularly apparent when it comes to women's issues, launching into a litany of warning signs that mimicked a Jeff Foxworthy comedy routine. "If you say you're for equal pay for equal work but you keep refusing to say whether or not you will sign a bill that protects equal pay for equal work, you might have Romnesia," Obama said. "If you say you'll protect a woman's right to choose, but you stand up at a primary debate and said that you'd be 'delighted' to sign a law outlawing that right to choose in all cases, man, you've definitely got Romnesia." Virginia lawmaker Barbara Comstock fired back on behalf of the Romney campaign, saying that Obama's the one with the short memory, as he's appealing for women's votes but overlooking how they've "suffered over the last four years in the Obama economy with higher taxes, higher unemployment, and record levels of poverty."

The reaction: Judging by the laughs Obama's getting, his new zinger is a hit with the base, says Josh Voorhees at Slate. "We're guessing this isn't the only time that you'll be hearing this on the stump between now and November, especially given how much the president appeared to enjoy delivering it." Republicans are mocking "Romnesia" as another sign of "the superficiality of the Obama campaign," says Greg Sargent at The Washington Post. Still, it looks like Obama might have finally found a way to portray Romney "a flip flopper and an extremist." Which might work, if the joke weren't so lame, says Lindsay Mannering at The Stir. People are having a field day mocking this zinger. So far, the best one comes from Comedy Central's @Indecision: "'I hope Obama sends whoever came up with #Romnesia to Pun-tanamo Bay.' Ba dum, ching! Nailed it." Take a look at Obama's new punchline:

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