We already know about Mitt Romney’s talent as a business leader, governor of Massachusetts, and someone who saved the 2002 Olympics from near bankruptcy. At the Republican convention, America had a chance to see another side of this remarkable man. We saw testimonials from friends and family about his character and selflessness as he helped so many. Time after time it was Mitt Romney who came to the aid of those in need with his time, experience, and compassion. He never sought recognition for himself, but his humility and talent for getting things done was noticed by all.
President Obama came into office promising to slow the rising oceans and heal the planet. Mitt Romney came to the podium with a much simpler promise: to help you and your family. He announced his five-step plan for America: Energy independence by 2020. Helping workers gain the skills they need for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Supporting trade agreements that make sense, but insisting on unmistakable consequences when nations cheat. Assuring every job creator that their investments in America will not vanish because of debts and deficits, and that America will be on track to a balanced budget.
Finally, Mitt Romney will champion small business, the source of America’s job growth. That means reducing taxes on business, not raising them. It means simplifying and modernizing the regulations that hurt small businesses. It also means reining in the skyrocketing cost of health care by repealing and replacing Obamacare.
The Democratic convention was faced with a real challenge. Unemployment has been stuck at over 8 percent, and when considering the underemployed and discouraged worker, the rate is over 15 percent. For every new job that has been added, four workers have given up looking for work. Food stamp usage and poverty are at record highs, the national debt is $16 trillion and growing toward disaster. We are borrowing 40 cents out of every dollar spent by the federal government. Our dollar is becoming weaker and government continues to grow. Our banks and energy producers are crippled with oppressive regulations. Household income has fallen below pre-recession levels.
The Democratic convention began with a video proclaiming that “government is the only thing we all belong to.” We belong to government? Is this how Democrats really think? Government exists to serve us and protect our God given rights. We do not belong to government, it belongs to us.
Democrats wrote a platform that deleted God from the document and removed any reference to Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. When the details of the omission surfaced there was a public relations firestorm and delegates scrambled to hit the undo button. The change to put God back required a two-thirds affirmative vote, but at least half the delegates voted to leave God out. In spite of a failure to achieve the required two-thirds, the chairman ignored the obvious defeat and rammed the measure through anyway. Good for God, but the Democratic Party was left shaking its head, and in some cases its fists.
During his speech the president did not even mention his signature legislative victories, Obamacare, which is largely unpopular, and his stimulus program, which promised and failed to keep unemployment under 8 percent. The president did say that “the path is harder ... and the road is longer,” which simply means we can expect more of the same if he is re-elected. And don’t forget higher taxes and “tax fairness,” even though the top 10 percent of wage earners already pay 70 percent of all federal taxes.
Obamalaid down the marker for how to gauge his success or failure. Early on in his presidency he said, “If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.” At least he got that right.
Mark E. Munroe, is chairman of the Mahoning County Republican Party.