US economy key to White House job

 
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Worthington, Ohio 25 October 2012 Mitt Romney must project a presidential image in the last week of campaigning

It wasn't exactly the "major" economic speech trailed by the campaign, but Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's speech in Iowa was important.

His demeanour is serious and sober, but the strategy is almost schoolboy cheek. Remember 2008 - hope and change? Mitt Romney says he is now the candidate of change, big change, while President Barack Obama stands for the status quo.

Some people will vote for him because he promises a new vision. Like the man in the "coal=jobs" baseball cap and bright red Romney-Ryan T-shirt. He was choked with emotion.

We spoke as he was making his way out of a rally for Mr Romney in the state of Ohio, a bright-eyed toddler in one arm, a slightly older child holding his free hand.

"It's devastating to us," he says. "Without a change in the United States, small businesses over here, people working every day to feed their families." His voice breaks and he is close to tears.

"Things are really bad, very bad here. We need a change now, and Mitt Romney is the man to do it. We cannot afford four more years of this."

Given his cap, I suspect he is a miner or construction worker. I couldn't be more wrong. He owned a hairdressing salon and had to lay off 22 stylists.

The Romney campaign will be hoping there are millions as distressed and as passionate as him.

But Friday's better-than-expected (GDP) figures won't help Mr Romney's campaign much - although they call it "discouraging news".

Two percent is not spectacular, but it is going in the right direction. But most people will vote on how they feel the economy is, not what some statistics point towards.

By now, people know what they think of the state of the economy. It is what - or who - could make it better. That is the question.

It is why, in these final days of campaigning, Mr Romney is attempting to make a much more positive case.

I doubt there will be much new in today's "major" economic speech - indeed it would be slightly incoherent if he did produce new ideas at this stage.

But his message is that he is a man with a plan, ready to take on the big job. One of his strategists told me he is not by nature a campaigner, but now as the big day grows closer he is much more focused on thinking about how he would do the job.

This is spin, of course, as are reports of the work he is doing with a team preparing for power (1 min 40 sec in).

But expect to hear Mr Romney sounding much more presidential in the final full week of campaigning.

 
Mark Mardell Article written by Mark Mardell Mark Mardell North America editor

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  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 214.

    #210
    Kat - given the paucity of decently paid jobs what is the alternative to a welfare program.
    OK, some people will always exploit the system and that's really sickening but it's also common to every strata of society - we need only look at Goldman.
    What is the solution in the absence of jobs? Do we let bands of homeless people with no money roam the country?

  • rate this
    -9

    Comment number 213.

    "What we must do is avoid breaking the records set by Reagan and Dubya for raising the debt ceiling."
    +++

    Reagan increased deficit but bankrupted Soviet Union, forcing it and its Empire to collapse (huge peace dividend)

    And the name of a US. president on whose watch both federal deficit and national debt increased more than under any other is not Reagan or Bush - but Barack Hussein Obama.

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 212.

    MagicKirin @201
    All that you wish

    Deliverable
    With ease
    Automatically
    'Magically'
    By setting The People free, secure in their belonging
    No longer corrupted by Fear & Greed

    Possible only with understanding & agreement on Income Equality

    Will you not give it at try, a thought experiment?

    How else, on what else (bar continued chaos), peace conceivable?

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 211.

    #207
    Kat -Romney is under intense media scrutiny yet still adopts an intransigent position in relation to openness about his own taxes.
    The problem is endemic and institutionalised and will not be solved "overnight".
    A good start would be the abolition of tax havens and all the murky scams associated with them - powerful lobbies will continue to fight attempts at progressive reform

  • rate this
    -4

    Comment number 210.

    206.All for All
    pmk@199
    One 'entitlement' must be, for peace & prosperity: 'belonging', for all
    Astronomical peace-dividend: slash bureaucracy.



    Under pres. Obama federal bureaucracy hasn't shrunk; it has GROWN.

    Btw. Do you know how many thousands are employed in Social Security Administration alone? Do you know we're not even allowed to know what Food Stamps are actually spent on?

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 209.

    "Things are really bad, very bad here. We need a change now, and Mitt Romney is the man to do it. We cannot afford four more years of this."
    It's the promise of change that will take Romney to the WH, but if I were Romney I'm not sure that I'd want to be there when the country goes over its fiscal cliff. There has been no interrogation about the fiscal cliff and what will happen.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 208.

    #202
    Economic stagnation, unemployment, huge federal deficit and $16 TRILLION
    ---
    Bush legacy well documented and as our more enlightened contributors have indicated there is no "quick fix" (in relative terms Kat, given the colossal scale of the problems) for the economic malaise.

    What we must do is avoid breaking the records set by Reagan and Dubya for raising the debt ceiling.

  • rate this
    -4

    Comment number 207.

    203.Billythefirst
    The key entitlement that has to cease is that of not paying taxes - far too many people who can easily afford to do so use complex technicalities and obfuscation to avoid their responsibilities
    ++++


    True. But pres. Obama had 4 years to simplify US Tax Code; especially during 1st two years during which his party was in full control of both chambers of US Congress.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 206.

    pmk@199

    One 'entitlement' must be, for peace & prosperity: 'belonging', for all

    Astronomical peace-dividend: slash bureaucracy, liberate from crime, free initiative for all

    The cost? Education, truthful, relevant, inspiring

    The benefits, not 'dull peace & gross plenty': knowing security of others, far in space and time; able to have 'rational trust' in others, in all; on a journey, together

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 205.

    "he [OBama][ appears to be doing a pretty good job considering the hand he was dealt by years of Republican tax cuts & vastly increased borrowing to pay for their wars"
    +++


    Firing ca 110 Tomahawks at Libya's governmental installations
    [a military action not authorized by the Congress) alone cost US taxpayers $62 000,000.00.

    Not to mention cost of deployment od US planes, ships&subs.

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 204.

    #201
    What'S "entrepreneurial" about Romney's policies - his opportunism or commitment to tax shirkers?

    Is the GOP free of vested interests?

    By appeasement, do you mean tact and diplomacy?

    Does increasing the size of the military constitute an increase in Government?

    Take 5 minutes to reflect on how absurdly partisan your position is.No point posting infantile nonsense is there?

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 203.

    #199
    Kat

    The key entitlement that has to cease is that of not paying taxes - far too many people who can easily afford to do so use complex technicalities and obfuscation to avoid their responsibilities - Romney is a perfect case in point - his refusal to be open and honest in relation to offshoring is damning testimony of a disgraceful lack of integrity.

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 202.

    194.coram-populo-2010
    Why is there no middle ground representation in American politics when it comes to electing a President?
    ++++

    Economic stagnation, unemployment, huge federal deficit and $16 TRILLION national debt being the most important issues to US voters (check the polls) who'll be next US president is not that important.

    But who'll control the Congress (power of the purse) is.

  • rate this
    -7

    Comment number 201.

    Obama's solution:

    Big goverment
    Instrusive govt regulation
    Power to Labor unions and special interests group
    apeeaement aroud the world

    Romney
    Entrepeneurial
    less goverment
    curb union power
    strong foriegn policy

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 200.

    183.M Holderbach


    From where I'm sat he appears to be doing a pretty good job considering the hand he was dealt by years of Republican tax cuts & vastly increased borrowing to pay for their wars:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-20096380

  • rate this
    -8

    Comment number 199.

    Re #190 "Voters need to come to terms with the seismic shift that has occurred as a result of over reliance on a dysfunctional financial sector and the mass export of jobs to the east."
    ++++


    First&foremost voteters will have to accept that unsustainble ENTITLEMENTS US Constitution says nothing about will have to be either significantly curtailed or (in case of SS) at least partly privatized.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 198.

    #193
    I posted that Romney wants Trump no where near his campaign anymore than Palin.
    ----------
    What's the problem Kirin? - Romney's 5 point plan and Trump's hair are a match made in heaven.

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 197.

    Chryses@178
    Not to quibble?

    "Your claim 'The tragedy' was about people in general?"

    My observation indeed, all of us assaulted, and many grievously wounded, even (not rather than as @173,178,182) in US military, exemplars in 'public service' duty & sacrifice

    "Patience!" bid @182: with this next term???

    49:51% 'trust' will not be 'rational'!

    Logic & History dictate Equal Partnership, or ruin

  • rate this
    +7

    Comment number 196.

    Romney's "real change": more poorer poor Americans, and greater accumulations of wealth for a tiny population of the Hyperrich... People with hidden assets, undeclared revenues, property (and rents) hidden in a succession of shell corporations that any child can open in the USA today (and now online, just about anonymously). Who needs a middle class, anyway? Ann "feeds" 30 on$138! You should, too!

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 195.

    Chryses@182
    "inconsistencies"
    An echo?
    Enough @175

    Last thought: fairly for people & planet, long-term?

    Pieces of crust adrift; mountains rise, bit-by-bit fall; dust holds fading event horizons; 'recent' with mass extinctions

    Life shaped Earth 3b years, insults no doubt countless
    Last 'major' from small planetesimal just 60m ago

    'We' are a 'life-shock'. Earth will be back. Our choice to stay?

 

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