One of my favorite book titles ever, thank you Mr. Franken.
Watching the debate today, I was disappointed that several times, Obama misrepresented something when he didn’t need to. Yes, I’m going to stick with misrepresented, but I will acknowledge that if Romney had said what Obama said, I might have used “lie” instead. Or, I might not have.
So, instead of trying to decide what both candidates were dishonest about, as well as the severity of the dishonesty and the appropriate title for it, I’m going to make a list of what I believe about the candidates.
- I believe that Mitt Romney is not communicating his tax reform plan clearly.
- I believe that this is allowing Obama to misrepresent it when speaking about it.
- I believe that Romney’s tax plan, IF he executes it as he says he wants to, would effectively lower taxes on the middle class.
- I believe that what Romney is trying to say, which is not always clear, is that if he lowers the tax rate across the board to, say, 20%, but eliminates deductions and credits that are taken by the rich, then people like Romney, who paid 14% in income taxes, would now be starting at 20% and taking almost no deductions. And there would still be a level where no/very little taxes would be paid, so the poor would also be protected.
- I believe that Obama is right to criticize Romney for not saying specifically which credits and deductions he will cut. That’s the only part of Obama’s criticism that I think is fair.
- I believe that the majority of Romney’s career was built on efficiency in business. Because of this, I also believe he would balance the budget. But I further believe that creating jobs is not typically part of corporate efficiency, and that should be noted when considering who will get America back to work.
- I believe that balancing the budget is Obama’s last priority.
- I believe Romney is wrong to criticize Obama for not delivering information about the embassy attack, when it could clearly be a matter of national security, especially since there is an ongoing investigation.
- I believe Romney’s overseas investments are being blown out of proportion. Most Americans who have any sort of retirement plan are investing in foreign assets of some sort. And while I haven’t seen the President’s pension, I wouldn’t doubt if Romney’s claim was true.
- I believe that the portrayal of Romney’s extreme wealth and disassociation with the middle class is both an big concern, and a big asset. Let’s face it, a person in Romney’s position in business makes hard decisions that most Americans will never face. You would hope that the President would have experience with those kinds of decisions. But at the same time, I fear his ability to accurately assess the true impact of his decisions on middle America’s lives.
- I believe that Obama has done a very good job despite having a Republican Congress that is blocking most of his attempts at new policy.
- I believe that Romney does not understand foreign policy.
- I believe Romney’s stance on social issues, specifically abortion, gay marriage, make him dangerous. We are a country that has begrudgingly evolved throughout time, and conservative social policy is trying to set us back 30 years.
- I believe Romney makes a good point when he says that illegal immigrants are essentially cutting in line in front of those who are trying to enter legally. I do not know enough about immigration policy to know if I believe that to have been portrayed accurately.
- I believe Mitt Romney is a sexist. I came to believe this when he announced to the world that he one day realized that women needed to leave work early to attend to their kids and cook dinner for their family. Both because he attached that roll to a woman’s identity, and because he positioned it as something a man would never do, or want to do.
- I believe the consistent dishonesty of the Republican party, specifically Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney, make it impossible to accurately assess whether or not Romney will do what he says he will.
- I believe that I am better off today than I was 4 years ago. 4 years ago I had left a job that was tanking due to the economy for a job I hated, which I would ultimately get let go from as it tanked, due to the economy. Keri was also in a job that was tanking due to the economy. My interest rate was 75% higher than it is today. I had fewer skills and less experience.
- I believe that $4 a gallon sucks. It is the last thing I care about in this election.
- I believe that if Romney and Obama ever opened their minds and listened to each other they would make one damn good President.
- I believe that’s not going to happen, so I’m going to stick with the man who will stand up for what is right socially. But I believe, if he does what he says he’s going to do, while he could set us back decades in some very important areas, Romney would not be a bad President when it comes to the economy, unemployment, and once he gets a better adviser, foreign policy. And he certainly wouldn’t be another George Bush.
But I don’t think I can believe Mitt Romney to do what he says he will, so most of the things I like about him are moot.