In an apparent attempt to re-brand himself yet again — after playing corporate buccaneer at Bain Capital, downsizing thousands of Americans out of their jobs, reformatting the hopelessly corrupt Utah Olympics™, implementing the ObamaCare prototype in Massachusetts, and launching his presidential campaign amidst artifacts of his dad’s Michigan auto success — Willard “Call Me Mitt” Romney may now want Americans to think of him as a Californian.

That’s right; MItt has not only pitched in to help his Bain Capital protege Queen eMeg attempt a hostile takeover of the governorship with her checkbook campaign. The Mittster has joined other denizens of La Jolla, among them Cindy McCain, Anne Rice, and Raquel Welch. He and wife Ann have a beachside cottage ($12 million) they purchased after selling their suburban Boston manse.

Clinging to their Massachusetts residency (for reasons unclear) the Romneys have prevailed upon one of The Sons:

Romney and his wife, Ann, sold the 6,500-square-foot Massachusetts colonial where they raised their five sons, fetching $3.5 million. They also unloaded a 9,500-square-foot family retreat at the Deer Valley ski resort in Utah for close to its $5.25 million asking price.

The couple held onto their waterfront home at Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire, while adding a 3,000-square-foot oceanfront house carved from the California estate once owned by actor Cliff Robertson.

They still do not own a property in Massachusetts, forcing them to claim temporary residence at a basement apartment in the Belmont home owned by their eldest son, Tagg. It’s the address Romney used to vote in Republican Scott Brown’s recent victorious Senate special election race, all legal with town officials.

Mitt and Ann’s new house in Belmont has been pushed back until June due to “contractor delays,” thus the need for the basement subterfuge.

But might Ann, who loves the Pacific seaside for its sunny, healing equestrian opportunities, be excited about making La Jolla her permanent home? After all, Massachusetts has that Kennedy blue tinge, that collapsing health care program, that fluke centerfold Senator up for re-election in 2012, that snowy weather.

Of course, California has pesky nurses, who appear decidedly unwelcoming to Queen Meg and the Romney fundraising coterie. In their latest demonstration of noblesse no-thanks, the nurses mobbed a Romney fundraiser for Whitman:

Inside, Whitman told the tech executives and guests who crowded into the sold out event that in her administration, she will look to many of them for her top appointments. “Fasten your seatbelts, because I will be calling on many of you in Silicon Valley to come serve in Sacramento,” she said. The former eBay CEO added to laughs, “many of you will not be excited about that.”

And the noisy crowd of about 100 blond-wig-wearing protesters staged a protest which aimed to suggested billionaire Whitman was aiming to install her own hand-picked crowd of wealthy insiders in Sacramento. In a theatrical show of support for “Queen Meg” — the tiara-wearing look-alike candidate whom the California Nurses Association drafted to dog the GOP hopeful — the nurses mobbed the lobby and chanted “we can’t afford a democracy, so why not have a monarchy?” as guests looked on.

But these ungrateful nurses don’t represent the oligarchy of California, who jammed events all over the state this week to meet and greet with the top end of the national GOP:

Arizona Senator John McCain, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former Secretary of State George Shultz and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney all headlined with Whitman at the event at the Sofitel Hotel in Redwood City, which raised at least $500,000 for the billionaire candidate’s campaign.

The Whitman bash had it all, from the custom-made M&Ms (message: “create jobs”) and the individual chocolate tiramisu cakes emblazoned with “Meg 2010” inside, to the nurses’ protest plane droning overhead outside dragging its “Meg for Queen 2010” banner.

I hope Mitt wasn’t put off by the reception he got from the nurses. After all, Americans have gotten used to a Western White House before. And it’s never too cold in San Diego for the dog to ride atop the old station wagon.

Teddy Partridge

Teddy Partridge