Skip to comments.How Romney can start to energize conservatives [Hello-ooo! Anyone home?]
Posted on 02/09/2012 8:31:40 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
Mitt Romney wants to be the next president of a country in need of serious and sweeping economic reform. And here are the first two points in his 59-point economic plan:
1. Maintain current tax rates on personal income
2. Maintain current tax rates on interest, dividends, and capital gains
Now imagine private-equity boss Romney back at Bain Capital sitting down to read his teams 59-point turnaround plan for some troubled widget maker. And imagine if the first two action items started with the phrase Maintain current .
Romney probably wouldnt bother reading any further before tossing the report in the trash, calling a meeting, and cracking heads. Heck, if Private Equity Romney were called in to turn around Romney Campaign Inc., axing CEO Romney might be the first move on his to-do listespecially after looking at last nights numbers from Colorado, Minnesota, and Missouri.
Romney needs to give conservatives, and voters in general, a much clearer picture of the sort of conservative governance President Romney would strive for. Exactly how would Mr. Fix-it fix America? Heres how he can do it:
Stress entitlement reform and keep stressing it. Romney has embraced the broad outlines of a Paul Ryan-style Medicare overhaul which would reform the program into a premium support system for younger Americans. As for Social Security, Romney would raise the eligibility age and alter the way benefits are indexed to inflation for high-income retirees. Good stuff.
But guess what? Neither plan is one of his 59 points. Nor can either be easily found on his web site. And in his speeches after winning the New Hampshire and Florida primaries and Nevada caucus, there wasnt one mention of entitlements, Medicare, or Social Security. These programs are at the very heart of Americas long-term debt problem and thus should be at the heart of Romneys campaign.
Specify which federal programs he would cut. Romneys op-ed today in USA Today is a perfect example of what turns off Tea Party GOPers. He says hell cap spending at 20 percent of GDP by 2016, which will require between $400 billion and $500 billion in cuts. And whats going to get cut, exactly? Well, he wants to trim non-security discretionary spending by 5 percent across the board and then cap it below 2008 levels. On his website, Romney talks about eliminating or scaling back a wide range of programs, from Amtrak to the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities. Another $50 billion would come from reducing waste, fraud, and abuse. And $50 billion more from shrinking the federal workforce and its compensation.
Thats all fine, but Romney should mimic Senator Tom Coburn, who last summer released a 600-page plan to cut spending by $8 trillion over the next decade. Coburn didnt just wave a Lean Six Sigma magic wand over the budget to make the red ink go away. He went over the federal budget line by line to identify and exorcise wasteful, duplicative, or unnecessary programs. He treated it the way a private equity firm would a floundering rust-belt manufacturer or overbudget Olympic Games.
Get a tax reform plan worthy of the name. In his USA Today piece, Romney again said he would pursue fundamental tax reform that makes our system simpler, flatter and fairer. When are we going to get some details on this, first term or second term? Faster, please. Washington is full of tax reform plans. Just steal one and tweak it a bit. Theres the Bowles-Simpson plan which would get rid of all tax breaks and lower the top rate to 23 percent. Jon Huntsman stole it and then modified it by getting rid of investment taxes. That would be a great option for Romney, too. Call it the Entrepreneur First option and stress how it would boost growth, income, and jobs.
Or Romney could go with the Family First option. Under a plan created by conservative economist Robert Stein, rejiggering tax rates and tax credits would create a system where middle-income families with kids under 18 would pay substantially less in taxes while high-income workers and upper-middle-income taxpayers who do not have children in the home would pay more. Stein would also eliminate the double taxation of corporate income and cut the effective tax rate on capital investment.
Push education reform. Romney thinks in terms of human capital and creating a 21st century workforce. Mostly, this involves enhanced worker retraining and more high-skill immigration. But fixing K-12 must be a core element, too. Washington should support in every way it caneven if that just means getting out of the waythe introduction of market forces and accountability. Oh, and it also means lending support, if only from the bully pulpit, to governors battling teachers unions. Just about every conservative whos seen Waiting for Superman now views depowering teachers unions as a moral imperative, even more than a fiscal one. Does Romney?
Both shrink and expand the 59-point plan. Romney needs to focus on a few key policies and hammer them over and over again. Rinse and repeat, just like Herman Cain did with his 9-9-9 plan. At the same time, he should greatly enlarge his 160-page economic outline into something more like the 500-page analysis of the U.S. economy published last year by venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers. Its fantastic, chart-heavy USA Inc. reportthe cover of which I reproduced abovetreats America like a corporation and analyzes it like an investment firm would.
Even the most capable Mr. Fix-it needs a blueprint. And if more conservatives knew what Romneys was, they might be more willing to lend a hand.
And this is REAL basic stuff.
Comments are interesting too.
I think Mitty should drop out.
It would sure energize me.
One is not capable of thinking of, much less implementing anything that’s on that list when one is a communist such as Mitt.
Here is my Whitewashed Jackass Prophecy:
If elected, Bishop Willard Romney will govern in the same activist left wing manner he did in Massachussets. At the end of the day, Bishop Willard Romney is Democrat mascot who has been whitewashed.
On a ship headed over the falls thats not who you want at the helm.
Damn, you beat me to it,,
If he hasn’t picked on how to relate to conservatives in the 6 years he’s been running for the White House, it’s obvious it’s not on his mind — or in his playbook.
Oh, and there is that thing about conservatives not trusting him. So it would be a waste of time even if he did say all the “right” things.
I agree. It is time for Mitt to drop out.
For me, it is not even about how Romney does not energize me any more. It is about how THE LEFT is going to destroy Romney and his faith in front of America. The stuff Obama is doing to the Catholic Church will be child’s play to how bad they will distort Mormonism.
How is a RHINO supposed to energize conservatives? Mitt has already energized conservatives to stay at home because of his mud slinging.
That’s Mitt -THE LOSER, who lost to McCain -THE LOSER, who lost to Obama.
Just to clarify...
Mitt- The “most electable” was beaten by McCain - who we must assume was even more “electable” who went on to lose to an idiot incompetant socialist moron who never ran anything larger than a ‘cummunity organization’
That’s what I’m waiting for! Better promises! Because politicians are so good at keeping promises! I won’t look at his track record or years of hard evidence regarding what he REALLY does when he has the power. Just give me promises!
By the way, Obama has PROMISED to govern from the middle while balancing the budget, exploding government growth, giving more freebies to everyone, cutting taxes, and making the whole world (including every third world despot) love America again. Gee, he makes great promises too!
Someone needs to ask him what kind of pride he feels knowing that at least half the republican electorate wants to see him beaten as badly as we want to see Obama beaten.
Frankly its pretty pathetic
Mitt is like the stalker who wants a romantic relationship and just will not accept a clear “no”. Romney won’t even accept a simple, “you disgust me, and if you were the last politician on earth, I’d rather die alone than settle for you.” Can we get a restraining order to keep him and his name more than 100 yards from any media microphone and from any polling place?
2. Maintain current tax rates on interest, dividends, and capital gains
That is fine with me,I can affored to pay the interest on the $34.00 dollars worth of interest I get on the $34,000 dollars I have on my CD
.10 interest is really making me a rich man.
That is fine with me,I can affored to pay the TAXES on the $34.00 dollars worth of interest I get on the $34,000 dollars I have on my CD
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