Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Democratic National Committee, Obama 2012 SuperTuesday Memos hit Romney

| No Comments

Mitt Romney gets SuperTuesday hits in memos from the Democratic National Committee chief Patrick Gaspard and Obama 2012 deputy manager Stephanie Cutter...

Click below for the memos....

below, from the DNC's Patrick Gaspard and Obama 2012's Stephanie Cutter...




To: Interested Parties

From: Stephanie Cutter, Deputy Campaign Manager

Re: Romney's Real Record in Massachusetts


Mitt Romney's 2012 campaign promises sound all too familiar to voters in Massachusetts. That's because while running for Governor 10 years ago Mitt Romney pledged, just like today, that his business experience as the CEO of Bain Capital would bring job growth and budget discipline to the corner office. Ten years ago, Romney pledged to be the top salesman for Massachusetts to bring jobs to the state and used platitudes to describe how he'd cut budget deficits.

What happened next? In some ways, Romney's predictions that his public-sector record would match the one he compiled in the private sector became true - but in all the wrong ways. At Bain Capital, Romney made millions by closing plants, laying off workers and shipping their jobs overseas. As Governor, Romney's Massachusetts was 47th out of 50 in job creation. At Bain Capital, Romney ran companies into debt and bankruptcy. As Governor, Romney ran up debt in Massachusetts, even as he raised taxes and fees on middle-class families and businesses.

Now Romney promises to bring that same experience to the White House, and is making the same empty promises to create jobs and balance the budget. It's no wonder that the more voters learn about Romney's record in Boston, the less they like him and the less enthused they are about coming out to vote for him.

· 47th Out of 50 in Job Growth: In Romney's four years as Governor, even as the national economy was growing, Massachusetts sat at 47th out of 50 in job growth. The state beat only Michigan, Ohio and Louisiana - which was still recovering from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

By contrast, under Gov. Deval Patrick, Massachusetts has excelled even while the nation struggled through the recession. Massachusetts moved from 47th in job creation in 2006 to fifth in the nation over the past two years.
Massachusetts' economy is now outpacing the national growth rate, it had the fourth-highest percent change in GDP between 2009 and 2010, and it was ranked as one of the top 10 places to do business under Gov. Patrick, a distinction Romney never achieved.

· Mocking Manufacturing: Romney recently called President Obama "out of touch" for encouraging people to pursue manufacturing jobs. Slighting this sector is nothing new for Romney: as governor of Massachusetts, he repeatedly axed funding for small manufacturers' workforce training. Not surprisingly, on his watch the state's manufacturing declined by twice the national average, the third-worst record in the country, according to the Boston Globe. The Globe also reported, unsurprisingly, that Massachusetts' workers' wages and income fell, too.

President Obama has revived manufacturing in America. Through his rescue of the American auto industry and other initiatives to help small businesses, expand exports and bring jobs back to our shores, American manufacturers are hiring for the first time since the late 1990s. Manufacturing has added more than 400,000 jobs since 2010, and February 2012 was the 31st consecutive month in which the sector grew.

· Piling on Debt: Romney often boasts of his budget mastery as Governor, noting that he balanced budgets as state law required. But what Romney forgets to mention is that under his leadership, debt in Massachusetts grew by 16.4 percent, even as he raised taxes and fees by $750 million a year on middle-class families and businesses. Each citizen's tax burden increased by nearly a third.

President Obama's budget would cut the national deficit by $4 trillion over 10 years in a balanced way that asks everyone do to their part and pay their fair share.

· Growing Government: Romney is campaigning on a promise to shrink government, an area in which he has no record or credibility. While Governor of Massachusetts, public-sector jobs grew at six times the rate of private-sector positions.

President Obama has done the opposite: During the nation's 23 consecutive months of private-sector growth, in which American businesses have created 3.7 million new jobs, government employment is down 2.6 percent - a record unmatched even by Ronald Reagan.

Today, Romney is hitting the "repeat" button. He is making the same case to America that he made to Massachusetts a decade ago. He is promising to grow jobs and shrink deficits, even though his past record fails to support his ability to do so. What's worse is that his current policy promises run counter to these goals.

The independent Tax Policy Center concluded last week that Romney's tax plans would add $480 billion to the deficit in a single year, equivalent to over $5 trillion in tax cuts over the coming decade. These trillions would go to tax giveaways that disproportionately favor the wealthiest Americans.

In fact, the top 0.1 percent of households -- those fortunate enough to make more than $2.9 million a year -- would get a tax cut of $725,000. That's more than what a dozen typical families make in a year, combined. And those same families would find themselves paying a higher share of federal taxes because Romney's plan is so slanted to millionaires and billionaires.

Meanwhile, about 18 million working families would actually pay higher taxes because Romney would end current tax breaks for college, children, and earned income. In Massachusetts, that means 260,000 households - including 18 percent of families with children - would pay an average of $900 more a year in taxes.

On top of these tax cuts, Romney would stack a massive buildup in defense spending. Our defense budget is already larger the next 10 nations combined. Romney would add about $2 trillion over the next decade, all in pursuit of an arbitrary target of making defense spending 4 percent of our economy, even though that target is untethered to any clear or strategic objectives.

It's the same formula that helped lead to an economic catastrophe in the last decade, and would again.

To help pay for these tax cuts and increase in defense spending, Romney has proposed deep cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid that would shred our system of retirement security and leave tens of millions of Americans without health insurance. But even these deep cuts would not be nearly enough to pay for his tax cuts and defense spending, much less meet his promise of balancing the budget.

His promises would "require extraordinarily large cuts in nondefense programs," according to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, cuts that "are far deeper than those that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan's (R-WI) austere budget plan would require." The Center estimated that $10 billion in cuts would be needed over 10 years, a figure calculated before Romney added an additional $3 trillion in tax cuts two weeks ago. Making cuts this large would require cutting everything from Social Security checks to college scholarships by 38 percent. If Romney chose to protect Social Security and Medicare, he'd have to cut everything else by 81 percent.

Past is prologue, and Americans can learn a lot from Romney's record in Massachusetts.


==================================================================
Memorandum

From: Patrick Gaspard, Democratic National Committee

To: Interested Parties

Date: March 6, 2012

Re: With Super Tuesday Looming, Mitt Romney's Vast Spending Advantage Gives Him an Edge but His Blatant Hypocrisy and Extreme and Out-of-Touch Positions Will Be His General Election Kryptonite

With Republican voters from coast to coast heading to the polls today as multiple states across the country hold Super Tuesday contests, this is one of the biggest and most important nights of the primary season. But if the GOP candidates have had a chance to look at the results of the latest national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll on the presidential race, it won't just be the tallying of votes that keeps them up tonight. In a strong demonstration of the damage that has already been done by the incredibly divisive and ugly GOP nomination process, four in 10 of all respondents say it has given them a less favorable impression of the Republican Party. When asked to describe the Republican contests in a word or phrase, respondents offered such choice answers as "painful," "lesser of two evils," "uninspiring," "poor choices" and "depressed."

But Mitt Romney ought to be more worried than anybody. Results of the new poll show Romney's favorability rating has dropped to an anemic 28 percent, with 39 percent having an unfavorable impression of Romney. He's faring even worse among independent voters, with just 22 percent having a favorable impression of Romney while 38 percent view him unfavorably. What might cause such a strong unfavorable view of Mitt Romney in the last few weeks? Perhaps it's the fact that he's running an almost entirely negative campaign; or, that he's pandering to the far right and in the process demonstrating that no one can trust him; it may also be attributed to his being incredibly out of touch.
It's very bad news for Mitt Romney, whose standing among voters is now worse than virtually all other recent presidential candidates who went on to capture their party's nomination. In fact, as MSNBC's First Read noted:

In fact, Romney's image right now is worse than almost all other recent candidates who went on to win their party's presidential nomination: Obama was 51%/28% and McCain was 47%/27%, per the March 2008 NBC/WSJ poll; Kerry was 42%/30% at this point in '04; George W. Bush was 43%/32% in 2000; and Bob Dole was 35%/39%.

As the GOP nomination fight continues through Super Tuesday and beyond, Romney has clearly done severe damage to himself should he make it to November. That's because in greater and greater numbers, voters are seeing that Mitt Romney will say anything to get elected. He has tried to buy his way to victory and has taken extreme and out-of-touch positions that will alienate general election voters.

ROMNEY VASTLY OUTSPENDING HIS OPPONENTS IN AN EFFORT TO BUY HIS WAY TO VICTORY IN OHIO AND ACROSS THE COUNTRY

Throughout the battle for the GOP nomination, Mitt Romney and his allies have made it clear they has no problem burying his opponents with millions of dollars in ad buys if that's what it takes to win. The Super Tuesday states have been no exception, where NBC News' Chuck Todd reported late last week that Romney and his Super PAC, Restore Our Future, have outspent Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and their Super PACs combined - an $8.4 million to $4.9 million advantage.

In Ohio, which will be one of tonight's most closely watched contests, the Wall Street Journalreported that Romney and his Super PAC have spent $4 million on television and radio ads, compared to just $968,000 from Santorum and his Super PAC - a 4-to-1 advantage. And as the New York Times reported late last week, of the 11 Super PAC-funded commercials connected to the presidential election that have run since the beginning of February, all but one has been negative. Simply put, Mitt Romney and his allies are carpet-bombing the opposition to win.

Now, according to NBC News' Mark Murray, new ad buys by Restore Our Future in Louisiana, Illinois, Mississippi and Alabama bring spending by Romney's Super PAC in the GOP race to a grand total of $28 million. Clearly, Mitt Romney and his allies are willing to spend any amount of money saturating media markets state-by-state to knock out their opponents and buy their way to the top. As Republican strategist and former Rick Perry backer Nelson Warfield was quoted as saying in a recent New York Times article, "It's clear the negative ads are what's keeping this guy alive. It seems like Republican primary voters will not vote for Mitt Romney unless they are forced into it. And the way they're forced into it is when he beats the other guy senseless."

EXTREME, OUT-OF-TOUCH POSITIONS WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT ROMNEY SHOULD HE MAKE IT THE GENERAL ELECTION

But the price that Mitt Romney is paying in the Republican nominating process can't be summed up in financial costs alone. As he's campaigned ahead of today's GOP contests, Romney has taken extreme and incredibly out-of-touch positions that will greatly alienate general election voters should he make it November. Just yesterday, for instance, while discussing rising tuition costs at a town hall event in Ohio, Romney dismissively suggested that students should "shop around" for affordable tuition. What Romney neglected to mention was that the plan he has embraced would cut Pell Grant funding and end a tax credit for higher education, and as Massachusetts governor, he cut higher education funding while tuition and fees increased. So students struggling to make ends meet should simply bargain-hunt while Mitt Romney actively works to eliminate benefits and make college less affordable?

Mitt Romney also went as far on the campaign trail as calling President Obama "out of touch" for encouraging hardworking Americans to pursue manufacturing jobs - as if that were something to be ashamed of in this country. Perhaps Romney's comment shouldn't come as much of a surprise - we already know his record when it comes to American manufacturing. During his time as Governor of Massachusetts, he repeatedly cut funding for small manufacturers' workforce training, and manufacturing in the state declined by twice the national average under his watch. That's in stark contrast to the President's record: thanks to his efforts to help the American auto industry recover and additional measures to help small businesses, expand exports and bring jobs back to America, our nation's manufacturers are hiring workers for the first time since the late 1990s. And manufacturing has added more than 400,000 jobs since 2010.

But Mitt Romney's recent collection of extreme positions and out-of-touch views doesn't end there. Last week, he embraced the extreme right wing of his party by advocating for the Blunt-Rubio Amendment, which would allow employers to deny access to health coverage they found objectionable. This could severely restrict women's access to health care and is a fundamental assault on the rights of women to make decisions about their health for themselves. But it wouldn't just stop at restricting women's access to contraception - it could affect access to mammograms, cervical cancer screenings and maternity care. He's also said he would have supported a so-called "Personhood amendment" in Massachusetts to define life as beginning at the moment of conception. It could have banned all abortions and likely banned many common forms of birth control. And if that wasn't bad enough, Mitt Romney showed just how weak a leader he is and how he's willing to cater to the worst elements of the far right wing fringe when he refused to condemn Rush Limbaugh for his slanderous invective against Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown Law student who was barred from testifying by Congressional Republicans on the issue of affordable access to contraception and other health care services for women. Romney's run to the right may be winning him Tea Party voters, but he's losing support from women after alienating them with his policies. It's no wonder Romney is losing among women by almost 18 percent. In Ohio alone, less than a third of women view him favorably.
For further evidence of just how far Romney is willing to go to shore up Tea Party support, look at his recent pledge to repeal the bipartisan Sarbanes-Oxley law - which was passed by a Republican House and signed into law by President George W. Bush. Following the infamous Enron scandal, Sarbanes-Oxley restored much-needed confidence and responsibility to Wall Street - and Romney's reckless call for a repeal of this critical reform shows there is simply no end to Romney's willingness to pander to the right wing and let our nation slide backward to the same failed policies of the past.

ROMNEY CONTINUES TO DISPLAY BLATANT HYPOCRISY AND DISHONESTY ON THE ISSUES

Still, if his extreme and out-of-touch positions weren't enough to give voters pause, his hypocrisy and dishonesty on the issues - of which some cases have just been exposed over the past several days - should do the trick. He's railed against earmarks and federal spending, but he bragged in 2002 during his run for Governor about his prowess at obtaining federal earmarks for the Olympics - even going as far as giving a PowerPoint presentation to show he knew exactly how to get taxpayer money out of Washington. And then just yesterday, a Romney op-ed from 2009 surfaced that showed just how dishonest Mitt Romney has been about his position on health reform. While he's slammed the Affordable Care Act signed by President Obama and said similar legislation he passed in Massachusetts was no national model, he argued the exact opposite on multiple occasions, including in this 2009 USA Today op-ed, where he said that the law passed in Massachusetts - including the individual mandate - could serve as a national model.

On Iran, Mitt Romney is misleading voters and completely distorting President Obama's record. Romney says he would enact crippling sanctions, isolate Iran internationally and keep a military option on the table - but President Obama is already doing all three. He's making Iran weaker and more isolated today than ever before. In fact, President Obama spoke just last week at AIPAC's Policy Conference, making clear his determination to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. But Mitt Romney won't talk about any of that, instead continuing his campaign of hypocrisy and dishonesty on issues Americans care about.
These episodes demonstrate yet again why so many voters - even in his own party - don't trust Mitt Romney: he won't tell the truth about his record, and he'll say anything to get elected.

CONCLUSION

While Super Tuesday represents a pivotal moment in the race for the Republican nomination, tonight is hardly the end of the battle for Mitt Romney. With 466 delegates at stake in today's contests and Romney's current delegate count at a modest 149, regardless of what happens tonight, Romney will still be considerably short of the 1,144-delegate total needed to clinch the nomination. And while he may find himself on top in any number of contests this evening, make no mistake: with the millions upon millions in outspending his opponents and the laundry list of extreme, out-of-touch positions that have characterized Romney's campaign since day one, Mitt Romney will emerge from Super Tuesday badly wounded among general election voters - and tonight will be anything but a victory lap.

Leave a comment

Get the Sweet widget

More widgets

Video

Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Stay in touch

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on March 6, 2012 7:51 AM.

SuperTuesday Romney message to Santorum: You can't win was the previous entry in this blog.

Republican National Committee memo: Why Obama can't win Ohio, Virginia is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.