“I was speaking with one of these business owners … And he said, ‘You know, I’d like to change the Constitution,’?” Romney said, citing the earlier conversation. “?‘I’d like to have a provision in the Constitution that in addition to the age of the president and the citizenship of the president and the birthplace of the president … I’d like it also to say that the president has to spend at least three years working in business before he could become president of the United States.’?”
Romney did not explicitly endorse the suggestion, but added that if business experience were a requirement, the president “would understand that the policies they’re putting in place have to encourage small business, make it easier for business to grow.”’
Let’s see if this rationale holds up:
In a scholarly ranking of great presidents, a 2009 survey conducted by C-Span,6 of the 10 best leaders lacked sufficient business experience to be president by Romney’s rumination. This list includes Ronald Reagan, the actor, union activist and corporate spokesman, and John F. Kennedy, the naval officer, writer and politician. There is one failed businessman on the list of great presidents, the haberdasher Harry S. Truman.
By contrast, two 20th century businessmen — George W. Bush, whose sweetheart deal with the Texas Rangers made him a multimillionaire, and Herbert Hoover, who came by his mining fortune honestly — were ranked among the worst presidents ever by the same historians. Bush left the country in a sea of debt and an economic crisis rivaled only by the one that engulfed Hoover.