Romney: Israel-Palestine Two State Solution: “Kick the Ball Down the Field”

The New York Times OP-ED Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Let Them Eat Crab Cake, Maureen Dowd

Washington–Maureen Dowd, Op-Ed columnist commented on Mr. Romney’s appearance at a campaign fund-raiser for “high rollers” in Boca Ratan, Florida.  A video of his remarks at a $50,000-a-plate dinner was filmed and released recently.  Among his remarks were the following about the Israeli-Palestinian dispute and the two-state solution:  “He said he sometimes felt ‘that the Palestinians have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace–that the pathway to peace is almost unthinkable to accomplish.’ 

He continued, ‘You hope for some degree of stability, but you recognize this is going to remain an unsolved problem,’ adding ‘And we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately somehow, something will happen to resolve it.”

There are two sports and games idioms here: high rollers and kick the ball down the field.  “High rollers” refers to gamblers who gamble with a lot of money and perhaps for high stakes.  In the context of Mr. Romney’s comments, the term means very wealthy people.  “Kicking the ball down the field” refers to games such as football, soccer where the ball is kicked towards a goal, and sometimes to the opposite team when it is their turn.  Mr. Romney is stating that the problem is not going to be solved soon, but he hopes it will be in the future.

Maureen Dowd’s title is a play on Marie Antoinette’s supposed remarks about French citizens marching for bread during the French Revolution:  “Let them eat cake.”

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