I’ve been asked to outline the reasons why Willard Mitt Romney’s election to the presidency would be bad for our Valley and our nation. The powers that be at The Vindicator have asked me to make my case in 550 words or less.
I don’t need that many.
That’s because the obfuscating, shape-shifting, unprincipled, say-anything-to-get-elected GOP nominee actually wrote this column for me in October of 2008. Here, in 36 of his own words published in The New York Times, is the reason why Mr. Romney tells all of us why he is wrong for our community and America:
“Let Detroit Go Bankrupt
BOSTON — If General Motors, Ford and Chrysler get the bailout that their chief executives asked for on Tuesday, you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye. It won’t go overnight, but its demise will be virtually guaranteed.”
I don’t have to say anything more, do I?
OK, I can’t help myself, I will.
Those words illustrate the disdain for working families that characterized Mr. Romney’s years as the job-destroying CEO of Bain Capital and they prove he has no clue about how to move our nation forward.
The fact is that the prescriptions for our economy, taxes, Medicare and health care, the environment, women’s issues, labor, education, Social Security, defense, and foreign policy are every bit as wrong as his prediction for the future of GM and Chrysler.
President Obama’s commitment to the industry that employs tens of thousands of Valley residents and one of every eight Ohioans was the catalyst for a remarkable turnaround that’s paying huge dividends for our nation and our community. It’s a turnaround symbolized by the success of the Lordstown-built Cruze which beat both the Honda Civic and the Toyota Corolla to become the nation’s best-selling small car in August and September.
And the good news doesn’t end there. Because the Lordstown workforce — a workforce comprised of our neighbors, friends, and family members — has done such an outstanding job producing the nation’s number one small car, GM recently announced that the next-generation Cruze will be built right here in our backyard.
That means GM will invest $200 million in the Lordstown plant. It means that thousands of Valley workers will have jobs there until at least 2020. It means success and security for the local businesses who supply GM and the merchants who sell everything from pizzas to Harleys to the men and women who build the car that is driving our local economy.
And it means that Mitt Romney was wrong.
That, of course, didn’t stop him from trying to alter reality. As he has throughout the campaign, during the second presidential debate Mr. Romney flip-flopped and fibbed. His preposterous claim that President Obama followed his plan for rescuing the automakers was immediately dismissed by fact-checkers and derided by autoworkers.
But no matter how hard he tries or how often he lies, Mitt Romney can’t hide from these stark truths:
He was wrong about the auto industry, his economic plan that favors tax cuts for Wall Street over good jobs for Main Street is wrong for America, and that makes him dead wrong for the Mahoning Valley.
David Betras is chairman of the Mahoning County Democratic Party.