EXCLUSIVE: Rafalca Romney, Mitt Romney's Dressage Horse, Speaks to the Voice!

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Like much of America, we at the Village Voice have been bemused by Rafalca Romney, Mitt Romney's dressage horse who will be competing in the XXX Olympiad in London tomorrow. Imagine our surprise when we noticed that @RafalcaRomney was Tweeting*! We immediately emailed her, and Rafalca was more than happy to share her thoughts on being Mitt's horse, the difficulties of tweeting with hooves, the even more harsh realities of living off of expenditures that exceed those of the average American family's each year, and traveling to London via FedEx.

Thank you for speaking to the Voice by email from London, Rafalca! An indelicate question for a lady first: How old are you?

I'm a 15-year-old Oldenburg warmblood mare. Translation: I'm pretty as hell.

When did you first start Tweeting?

I decided to save the world sometime in late April.

Is it hard to Tweet with hooves?

Typing with hooves is not easy, even with a custom-fitted equine keyboard. Usually, I just dictate tweets to my PA.

Apple or Android?

I like Apples. Mitt's an Android guy.

When did you first start training for the Olympics?

Being an Olympian has been a dream of Ann's since she was a little girl. I have no say in the matter.

When you get hurt, who pays for your health care?

Sadly, Mitt must come out-of-pocket for all my expenses. But rest easy, America. My pampering is tax deductible, apparently, so you can all feel good that you're subsidizing the Romneys' dressage hobby.

Do you prefer Romneycare or Obamacare?

I didn't know there was a difference, but I can assure you neither is as good as Rafalcacare.

Who's your favorite team mate on Team USA?

I love my rider, Jan Ebeling. It's pretty surreal to have him on my back all day and then get messages from him on Twitter, but that's just the kind of partnership we have.

Does Mitt ever take you out for a spin? What's it really like to run around between Mitt's thighs?

Next time I see Sean Hannity, I'll ask him.

How does riding you help treat Anne's MS?

If riding dressage horses helps relieve Ann's MS symptoms, then I'm all for it. But let's be honest: It cost the Romneys a fortune to turn me into an Olympian, and it had nothing to do with MS.

What state do you think has trees with the best height?

I know, can you believe he said that?

Your mother was probably not baptized as a filly. Have you ever thought of baptizing her from beyond the glue factory grave?

Contrary to popular perception, I'm not a Mormon. I'm a Rafalcan, and it's against my beliefs to retroactively baptize the dead.

If your owner goes to the White House, you'll be the First Horse. Who would you tap for Vice Horse: "Mr. Ed" or the Lone Ranger's "Silver"?

I'd tap both those asses.

When your owner talks about riding the "Black Stallion," is he referring to the children's books or the current President of the United States?

"Black Stallion" is the name of the mechanical dressage horse Mitt rides when he needs to decompress.

Who has more culture: Israelis, Palestinians, or people on the dressage circuit?

I have no basis for comparison, but I'd guess either the Israelis or Palestinians.

Your Twitter says you're into liberal politics. Does that create tension with your owner? (Or did you get into liberal politics back when he was more liberal?)

When it comes to politics, Mitt and I have an understanding: He'll tool out every day and I'll make fun of him for it.

Speaking of making fun -- some people hate on your sport, but can you think of any sport more American than dressage?

There is no sport more American than dressage, except for all the other ones. Fun fact: Dressage and democracy were both born in Ancient Greece.

You're a pure bred, right? If some Mutt horse came along and knocked you up, would your owner want you to have the filly?

My lineage is impeccable, thankyouverymuch. Check out my family tree. Horses with my bloodlines cost more than the average home, but we're TOTALLY WORTH IT.

If I end up pregnant from one of my many, many encounters in Olympic Village, I don't know if Mitt would support my right to choose. Over the years, he's gone back and forth on that issue.

What advice do you have for your owner over the next three months?

Get over your daddy issues, update your software, pursue your passion for hairdressing, brush your teeth.

What was it like like to meet the head of MI6?

No comment. Only a fool would breach protocol and publicly discuss alleged meetings with MI6.

I read that you traveled to England via FedEx. What's that like?

I could have done without all the packing tape and being shoved into a drop-box, but still, going FedEx is better than travelling with Mitt.

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Wow, I guess someone should tell Gail Collins that Seamus got off easy!

Changing gears -- to borrow a phrase from the horseless carriage era -- have you noticed many Negroes participating in dressage?

Not many people of color participate in dressage, unless you count the (often undocumented) workers who muck out the stalls. One of the reasons the dressage circuit is so lily-white, I imagine, is that the dance music typically blows. Mine especially, which is personally selected by Mitt Romney himself, I shit you not.

Sounds like horse shit to me! Penultimate question: your owner seems to have gotten himself in a little trouble with comments about money making being part of Jewish "culture." Also, Wikipedia says your father (or damsire in dressage) was named "Rubenstein."

Is Mitt paying for Ann to ride a Jew all day long?

Ann doesn't ride me too often. She has many "lesser" horses she can ride without worrying about throwing off their Olympic-level game. As to your question, I really don't know, but some people have suggested the same thing by comparing my competition hat to a yarmulke.

Final question, Rafalca: How do you think American families would feel knowing that more money goes into you every year than their whole family unit makes?

Many Americans are jealous of my lifestyle and the fact that I probably have more frequent flyer miles than they do. Conservatives, I imagine, would say these people are just envious of Mitt's wealth. That may be true for some, but I don't think people in general are bothered by Mitt being rich, it's how he got there - largely by bankrupting companies and laying off thousand of workers - that has people upset. The reality is that Mitt has caused a lot of suffering and hardship in pursuit of the almighty dollar, and knowing that he's spent millions of his ill-gotten gains on dressage horses over the years is hard for some Americans to take (me included). What really pisses people off, though, is that Mitt has the gall to deduct his dressage hobby expenses ($77,731 in 2010 alone). The minor uproar over this dubious write-off is likely one reason why Mitt has not released more returns. This is pure speculation, but I suspect the Romneys have sheltered at least $5,000,000 in income over the last 10 years by deducting the care, feeding, and acquisition costs associated with their dressage "business."

Wow, you sure have a lot more to say than that other talking horse! Thank you for talking to the Village Voice, Rafalca. Hope typing via email is easier than Tweeting, good luck tomorrow, and here's to many more years before the final write off as you're donated to a glue factory!

You can follow @RafalcaRomney on Twitter or on Tumblr. Note: *@RafalcaRomney doesn't have a Twitter verification check mark, but how manyother horses Tweet?

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You can follow staff writer Steven Thrasher on twitter (@steven_thrasher) or reach him by email (sthrasher@villagevoice.com).

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