By The People

There are fundamental flaws in how American government operates today,
contrary to the Constitution and the vision of a representative republican form of governance.
I intend doing something about it: by educating and informing others who
are not even aware of the dangers.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Unwavering - Openness - Clarity - Transparency

“So will there be some [programs] that get eliminated or combined?  The answer is yes, but I’m not going to give you a list right now.”
— Mitt Romney

“I actually have a[n immigration] plan in mind, I haven’t unveiled it. ”
— Mitt Romney

“Because Gov. Romney has not specified how he would increase the tax base, it is impossible to determine how the plan would affect federal tax revenues…”
— Tax Policy Center

WASHINGTON, DC – Admittedly afraid of how voters will react to his ideas, Mitt Romney has a bad habit of teasing his policy proposals before refusing to show voters the details. First, Romney told told the Washington Examiner that he had an immigration plan that he hadn’t unveiled — that was over 100 days ago. Next, he gave a highly publicized “major” policy address at Ford Field in Detroit to unveil his new tax plan, but he failed to actually release the details of the plan in question. And finally, while speaking with the Weekly Standard, Romney flat-out admitted he was keeping secrets from voters because he was afraid his ideas would be unpopular. The Standard wrote:  “But Romney, ever cautious, is reluctant to get specific about the programs he would like to kill. He did this in his bid for the Senate 18 years ago and remembers the political ramifications.”

“Mitt Romney’s refusal to release his plans before the election shows he’s fully aware that his ideas are out of touch with American values. The only thing more cynical than Romney’s outdated policies that make the rich richer is his willingness to keep the details secret from voters."
 —  Rodell Mollineau, American Bridge president

Americans expect presidential campaigns to be worthy of the office they’re seeking — for candidates to offer competing visions for the future, instead of defaulting on the promises that got them there.  Romney has yet to prove to anyone he has what it takes. In fact, in the sixty months since Mitt Romney began his quest for the White House, the most noteworthy thing he’s done is outspend Rick Santorum in a couple of states. He has failed to realize it’ll take more than that to reach the White House.

Romney promised to eliminate cabinet agencies and government programs, but refused to specify which, out of a fear of the plans being politically unpopular. According to The Weekly Standard, “Mitt Romney wants to eliminate government programs and shutter cabinet agencies. Doing so, he says, is ‘the critical thing’ that needs to be done in order to bring government books back into balance and to begin restoring the promise of America.' ‘Actually eliminating programs is the most important way to keep Congress from stuffing the money back into them,’ he revealed in a 30-minute interview on March 21. It’s a smart answer in that it actually says nothing and is a deeply politically correct one.

Romney, ever cautious, is reluctant to be specific about any programs he would like to kill. He did this in his bid for the Senate 18 years ago and remembers the political ramifications. ‘One of the things I found in a short campaign against Ted Kennedy was that when I said, for instance, that I wanted to eliminate the Department of Education, that was used to suggest I don’t care about education,’ Romney recalled. ‘So I think it’s important for me to point out that I anticipate that there will be departments and agencies that will either be eliminated or combined with other agencies. So for instance, I anticipate that housing vouchers will be turned over to the states rather than be administered at the federal level, and so at this point I think of the programs to be eliminated or to be returned to the states, and we’ll see what consolidation opportunities exist as a result of those program eliminations. So will there be some that get eliminated or combined?  The answer is yes, but I’m not going to give you a list right now.’
[The Weekly Standard, 04/02/12]

December 7, 2011:  Romney admits he had an illegal immigration plan, but refused to unveil it.

In a Washington Examiner editorial board meeting, Romney was asked, “Have you not said enough to encourage that… simply by saying, ‘Well, once we’ve secured the border, we can do something?’" Romney responded, “I actually have a plan in mind, I haven’t unveiled it. There are other people I’d like to sit down with and review it with me. I went down to Florida and met with Jeb Bush six, seven months ago, laid out what I thought would be a complete plan to deal with permanent immigration policies with regards to our legal system to simplify it. Number two, how to deal with those who are here illegally today. And then number three, how to secure the border. And every piece of advice I've received from people who talk about this topic say get the first job done first, because if you talk about the other jobs you get highly confused with whether you are going to create incentives for people to come here illegally to take advantage of whatever program you might describe.”
[The Washington Examiner Editorial Board, 12/7/11]

Romney promised to eliminate tax deductions to pay for his tax plan, but did not specify which deductions, making it impossible to accurately evaluate his proposal. According to the Tax Policy Center, “In his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, Mitt Romney has proposed permanently extending the 2001-03 tax cuts, further cutting individual income tax rates, broadening the tax base by reducing tax preferences, eliminating taxation of investment income of most individual taxpayers, reducing the corporate income tax, eliminating the estate tax, and repealing the alternative minimum tax (AMT) and the taxes enacted in 2010’s health reform legislation. …

The plan would recoup the revenue loss caused by those changes by reducing or eliminating unspecified tax breaks, thereby making more income subject to tax. Gov. Romney says that the reductions in tax breaks, in combination with moderately faster economic growth brought about by lower tax rates, will make the individual income tax changes revenue neutral compared with simply extending the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.  He also promises that low- and middle-income households will pay no larger shares of federal taxes than they do now… Because Gov. Romney has not specified how he would increase the tax base, it is impossible to determine how the plan would affect federal tax revenues or the distribution of the tax burden.”
[Tax Policy Center]

Mitt Romney Platform:
What is the platform of Mitt Romney? Is Mitt Romney's 2012 platform truly conservative? And most importantly, can Mitt Romney be trusted to stand by his platform?

Mitt Romney's 2012 candidacy platform is contrasted below with the platform Mitt Romney maintained before and during his governorship of Massachusetts, and the previous article. Why is Mitt Romney running for President on a platform that has been so drastically altered?

Obviously, the 2012 Mitt Romney platform plays to the conservatives to win the Republican nomination, while Mitt Romney's earlier platform played to the liberals in Massachusetts to try to unseat Senator Edward Kennedy. In fact, Mitt Romney's earlier platform was actually more liberal than Kennedy's liberal platform.

Mitt Romney on Gay Marriage:

1994:  "As we seek to establish full equality [for gays], I will provide more effective leadership than my opponent, [Edward Kennedy]."

2011:  "I believe we should have a federal amendment to the Constitution that defines marriage as between a man and a woman."

Mitt Romney on Abortion:

1994:  "Abortion should be safe and legal in this country."

2002:  "Let me make this very clear, I will preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose."

2011:  "I believe people understand that I'm firmly pro-life."

Mitt Romney on Homosexuality in the Military:

1994:  "[I support] gays and lesbians being able to serve openly and honestly."

2007:  "‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ has worked well... We’re in the middle of a conflict. Now is not the time for a change in that regard, and I don’t have a policy posture as to allowing gays in the military to serve there openly."

Mitt Romney on Health Care:

2007:  “I’m proud of what we’ve done... If Massachusetts succeeds in implementing it, then that will be a model for the nation.”

2011: "What works in one state may not be the answer for another."

Mitt Romney on Immigration:

2006:  "[I am against] rounding up 11 million people and forcing them at gunpoint from our country."

2008:  "I disagree fundamentally that the 12 million people who come here illegally should be allowed to stay here permanently. I think that is a form of amnesty and that it's not appropriate."

Mitt Romney on Campaign Finance Reform:

1994:  "I would like to have campaign spending limits."

2007:  "The American people should be free to advocate for their candidates and their positions without burdensome limitations."

Platform 2012?

Abortion:  pro-life

Capital punishment:  against

Censorship:  against the Fairness Doctrine

Child protection:  "would propose a "One-Strike, You're Ours" law for child sex offenders convicted of using the Internet to prey on children."

Education:  supports No Child Left Behind

Abstinence education:  supports this in public schools

Prayer in schools:  He was against this in 1994, but in 2007 said,  "We ought to allow ceremonies, graduation ceremonies and public events that we have the ability to recognize the Creator."

Gas crisis: Wishes to become independent of foreign oil by using alternative fuels as well as domestic reserves of petroleum.

Environment\Global warming:  Pro-environment; regulation of greenhouse gas emissions through voluntary measures.

Family life:  Mitt Romney has said,  "That strong families are one of his three pillars, along with military and economy, for a strong America."

Gun control:  Romney has "flip-flopped" on this issue, once stating that he supported, "the right of individuals to keep and bear arms as guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution." and at another date saying he supported gun control and a ban on assault weapons.

Health Care:  supports the right of states to form their own health care plans for their respective state citizens.

Same-Sex Marriage/Civil Unions:  Romney has avidly supported same-sex marriage in the past, saying, "We must make equality for gays and lesbians a mainstream concern." However, in his 2008 campaign, Romney stated that, "I oppose same-sex marriage and I also oppose civil unions."

Medical Marijuana:  Stated, "I am not in favor of legalizing medical marijuana."

Stem Cell Research:  Believes it is ethical, but opposes research involving cloned embryos and opposes federal funding for it.

Free Trade: Supports

Minimum Wage:  Supports predictable, steady "changes" in the minimum wage. Up or down... Who knows?

Taxation:  Has pledged to not produce any new taxes or increase any existing taxes;  advocated for the elimination of the estate tax.

Immigration:  Supports legal immigration and decreased illegal immigration. Opposes amnesty for illegal aliens, but supports a path to citizenship for them, without any special treatment over legal immigrants, as well as the requirement to pay taxes and register with the government.

Iran:  Believes the use of tactical nuclear weapons against Iran if the latter country threatens to use nuclear weapons is an option.

Iraq War:  Romney has stated, "So long as there is a reasonable prospect of success, our wisest course is to seek stability in Iraq, with additional troops endeavoring to secure the civilian population." Is willing to withdraw from Iraq if the surge proves unsuccessful, which Romney believes is too early to tell.

Pakistan:  Wishes to aid this country in military, informational, and governmental ways through the Special Partnership Force."

What... if anything does the previous information actually mean?  You could corner Willard Mittington Romney in a closed room and sweat it out of him... but he might not know.

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