Mitt Romney

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Willard Mitt Romney
MittPortrait.jpg
70th Governor of Massachusetts
From: January 2, 2003 – January 4, 2007
PredecessorJane Swift
SuccessorDeval Patrick
Information
Party Republican
Spouse(s) Ann Romney
Religion The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Willard Mitt Romney, most popularly known as Mitt Romney, (born March 12, 1947) is the former governor of Massachusetts, and a successful U.S. businessman, and was the Republican nominee for the Presidential Election 2012. Romney lost against the incumbent President Obama in November 2012.

According to CNN, Romney won by a margin of 67-25% the first presidential debate against liberal incumbent Barack Obama. This debate had the largest television audience for a presidential debate since Ronald Reagan's 1980 classic against Jimmy Carter.[1]

He was first runner-up for the nomination in 2008. In 1994, Mitt Romney proved to be the most difficult challenger that incumbent Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts ever faced for reelection, causing Kennedy to pour far more money into the race than he expected.[2]

Romney led Obama among many key segments of the electorate: "Romney leads Obama 58%-34% among veterans, who make up about 13% of the electorate" and influence many other voters.[3] 50-43%, in early May.[4] Other polls show different results,[5] in swing states like Ohio,[6] Virginia[7] and Wisconsin.[8] Most national polls showed Obama with a lead over Romney later in the summer, but that lead evaporated after Obama's weak performance in the first debate. One national poll showed Romney with a 7-point lead over Obama. Romney then lost the second and third debates by emphasizing neocon rather than conservative positions, and Obama improved in some polls. By Election Day, however, the Gallup and Rasmussen polls showed Romney with a one-point lead. Before entering politics Romney was a businessman in Boston, having served as CEO of Bain Capital, a management consulting firm known for saving American companies. [9] His political start began during the financially unsteady 2002 Winter Olympics. He gained popularity in Massachusetts, a state known for being extremely liberal, and was elected governor in 2002. As governor he raised taxes several times. He unashamedly admits creating RomneyCare, which is a complete disaster and forces everyone to buy health insurance and has resulted in long delays for obtaining medical services, such as an ordinary physical, in that state. Ted Kennedy and other liberals supported the bill and probably wrote key parts of it. Romney declined to run for reelection and announced his candidacy for President.

During his campaign for the Republican nomination in 2008, Romney was widely but incorrectly supported as a staunch conservative and ran on his business experience in the private sector. Romney fought a rough battle against Senator John McCain in Florida, Michigan, and other key states, but large losses on the Super Tuesday primaries ended his campaign. Romney dropped out of the race and endorsed Senator John McCain on February 14, 2008. His name was circulated as a potential running mate for McCain as their relationship improved, though Sarah Palin eventually became the vice-president nominee.

Romney had supported many left positions: Romney had a pro-abortion record but has claimed to be pro-life since 2005; Romney acknowledges global warming but says that he doesn't know how much is due to human activity; Romney has been criticized for standing behind his 2005 health care plan in Massachusetts whilst pledging to "replace" ObamaCare during his campaign for president in 2012. RomneyCare featured an 'individual mandate' requiring everyone to purchase health insurance, and unlike Obamacare, featured socialized medicine as a backup for those who could not afford to pay. This plan is very similar to the 2010 ObamaCare bill that was adopted on a national level, and Obama claims Romney's people helped craft it.

Contents

Personal Life

Ann Lois Davies and Willard Mitt Romney

Romney is the scion of an old Mormon family. His grandparents were polygamists who fled the United States in the early 20th century when the Mormon Church repudiated polygamy; his father was born in Mexico. The Romneys returned to the U.S. in 1911 when a violent civil war broke out in Mexico.

Mitt Romney is a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and spent time as a missionary during his youth converting Catholics and agnostics to Mormonism in France. In fact, his time as a student and missionary helped him defer from military service during the Vietnam draft,[10] but he stated during interviews that "he had longed to join the soldiers in Vietnam and support the war effort." His father had stated in 1967 that he felt "brainwashed" by U.S. officials over the justification of the prolonged Vietnam war. This statement had been very costly in George Romney's 1968 campaign for president against Richard Nixon.

Romney maintains a stable marriage with his wife Ann, with whom he has five children.

Romney is the son of former Michigan governor and presidential candidate George Romney, a "Rockefeller Republican,"[11] who amassed a large fortune as an automobile industry magnate during World War II. George Romney was popular among moderates during his presidential run and was well-equipped for victory; many of his political advisors had come from Nelson Rockefeller's 1964 campaign.

Business Career

From 1978 to 1984, Romney was a vice president of Bain & Company, Inc. a worldwide management consulting firm, and in 1984, Romney co-founded a spin-off called Bain Capital. He invested in or bought many well-known companies such as Staples, Brookstone, Domino's, Sealy Corporation and Sports Authority. Critics say he advised corporations to cut their U.S. taxes by reincorporating in Caribbean tax havens such as the Caymen Islands, while maintaining their operations in the U.S.

Record as Governor

Romney served as governor of Massachusetts (2003-2007), with a generally conservative record that included economic expansion. He balanced the budget every year of his administration with out increasing taxes or increasing state dept. Romney turned a $3 billion budget deficit into a $500 million surplus by reducing government spending and added 80,000 new jobs by the end of his term. In 2004, 2005, and 2006 Governor Romney proposed cutting the state income tax from 5.3% to 5.0% [12]. Although the Democratic super majority in the state legislator refused to budge. Romney vetoed 844 pieces of legislation, with over 700 overridden. [13] He vetoed an increase in the minimum wage, saying "there's no question raising the minimum wage excessively causes a loss of jobs." [14] Under Governor Romney the state abolished a retroactive capital gains tax that would have forced nearly 50,000 taxpayers to pay additional taxes and fees. [15] Massachusetts Citizens For Limited Taxation Executive Director Barbara Anderson praised Romney, saying "There was no one else out on the horizon and with the legislature almost entirely Democratic, we felt it was necessary to have a grown-up in the corner office. … And we were right to back him. He's been a really good friend to the taxpayers."

However, some of the actions Governor Romney took received criticisms from conservatives, such as supporting moderate fee increases and creating and the nation's first universal health care program. During his 2002 gubernatorial campaign Romney supported abortion, his views evolved and would later take pro-life positions such as vetoing emergency contraception and vetoing stem-cell research that would allow cloning of human embryos. In 2006, Governor Romney testified before the United States Senate to support the Federal Marriage Amendment, which would limit marriage to one man and one woman. Additionally, Romney filed legislation to reinstate capital punishment, but was defeated in the Massachusetts House of Representatives on a 99-53 vote.

Mitt Romney made no pardons as governor, "My conclusion was, if somebody has been convicted by a jury of their peers, and they’ve been prosecuted and the police were able to get the evidence necessary to put them behind bars, why in the world would I step in and reverse that sentence?" [16]

On Education Romney called for the privatization of the University of Massachusetts medical school[17]. In 2004, he established the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship Program, which rewarded the top 25 percent of Massachusetts high school students with tuition-free scholarship to any Massachusetts public university or college. In August 2006, Governor Romney refused to allow former Iranian President Mohammed Khatami, an outspoken opponent of the United States and Israel, state police escorts during his speech at Harvard University. [18]

In December 2006, Romney signed a memorandum of agreement with the federal government that would allow state troopers to enforce federal immigration laws [19], however was revoked when Democrat Deval Patrict took office as Governor in January 2007.

Political Views

Abortion

Currently, Romney claims to be pro-life, but his record is very spotty. At times he has claimed to be pro-infantacide. "I am pro-life. I believe that abortion is the wrong choice except in cases of incest, rape, and to save the life of the mother. I wish the people of America agreed, and that the laws of our nation could reflect that view. But while the nation remains so divided over abortion, I believe that the states, through the democratic process, should determine their own abortion laws and not have them dictated by judicial mandate." (Boston Globe, Mitt Romney Editorial, July 26, 2005) [20]

Despite having a largely pro-life record as governor, in a 1994 debate with Senator Edward Kennedy, Romney said that abortion should be legal, declaring that "regardless of one's beliefs about choice, you would hope it would be safe and legal." "Many years ago, I had a dear, close family relative that was very close to me who passed away from an illegal abortion", Romney said. "It is since that time my mother and my family have been committed to the belief that we can believe as we want, but we will not force our beliefs on others on that matter. And you will not see me wavering on that."[21]

In his campaign literature for the 2002 Massachusetts gubernatorial election, Romney expressed a willingness to defend that State's pro-choice status quo.[22] He stated in a live, televised debate:[23]


"I've been very clear on that, I will preserve and protect a woman's right to choose, and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard."

Civil Unions

Romney claims to be opposed to the idea of gay marriage, however he has voiced explicit support for the homosexual agenda. He has advocated for domestic partnership benefits and equal rights for homosexuals, which is gay marriage in everything but name and an easy stepping stone on the vile gay agenda path towards homosexual recruitment.[24]. He also supports adoption for gay couples[25].

Economic Agenda

As President, Romney promised to pursue a conservative, pro-growth economic agenda. His number one economic priority would be to grow the economy — helping to create good jobs, raise incomes and preserve American strength. He says he would work to rein in excessive government spending and reform entitlements. To ensure America's continued economic growth, he promises to cut taxes — such as the Death Tax, savings taxes, corporate taxes and marginal tax rates. Despite these claims, he has supported the socialism agenda. He claimed credit for the government bailout of the union controlled car companies.[26] Also his RomneyCare law started the process of socializing medical care in Massachusetts. He continues to defend this law up to this day, undermining his commitment to repel the similar and equally atrocious ObamaCare.[27]

Romney says he would also promote trade, bring market forces to bear in health care, pursue national tort and liability reform, eliminate excessive regulations that put a burden on our economy and strengthen American families.

Immigration

Immigration has been an important part of our nation's success. The current system, however, puts up a concrete wall to the best and brightest, yet those without skill or education are able to walk across the border. We must reform the current immigration laws so we can secure our borders, implement a mandatory biometrically enabled, tamper proof documentation and employment verification system, and increase legal immigration into America.[28]

Romney supports a strong stance on illegal immigration.[29] On 5/24/07, Romney spoke about how he was tolerant about gays and then he discussed the current illegal immigration bill before Congress:

He expressed less tolerance for illegal immigrants, and said he and President Bush have a difference of opinions on a bill that would provide a path toward legalization for an estimated 12 million people unlawfully in the country. "He has his view, and other people have their views and I have my own," Romney said. "This is for all intents and purposes a form of amnesty in that everyone who is here illegally today will be able to stay under this bill." The bill is unfair to people who are trying to come to the country legally, he said. People here illegally should be able to apply to come to the United States, but under the same terms as everyone else and behind those who have already applied. "I don't think that we're going to round up 11 or 12 or however many million people and bus them out of the country. That's not what I'm talking about," Romney said. "Those who committed felonies, of course, would be deported. Those who require government assistance to stay here would surely need to get off government assistance and ultimately could not remain here on government assistance."[30]

Stem Cell Research

Mitt Romney supports the right of scientists to research on embryos created during fertility treatments. Critics consider this to be essentially infantacide.[31]

Foreign Relations

During the Syrian Civil War, Romney called for arming the rebels.[32] He also said that Russia is America's 'number one geopolitical foe'.[33] Romney and Paul Ryan said that China is a cheater in global economy.[34]

Evolution

Mitt Romney belives in Evolution as a part of Creationism and he opposes Intelligent Design.[35]

2008 Presidential Campaign

Main Article: Mitt Romney 2008 Presidential Campaign

Dude and mitt romney.jpg
As chairman of the Republican Governors Association, Romney campaigned nationwide for GOP gubernatorial candidates in 2006, building up a network of allies and supporters. While he did not run for reelection as governor, in 2004 Romney set up a federal political action committee (PAC) called the Commonwealth PAC, which raised $2.71 million during the 2006 election cycle. On January 3, 2007, his next-to-last day in office as governor of Massachusetts, Romney filed to form a presidential exploratory committee with the Federal Election Commission. He officially announced his candidacy for President a month later. Romney was the first candidate in either party to start running television and radio ads. The ads focused mainly on his record as governor, running the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics, and his work as a very successful businessman. Romney's five sons had been actively campaigning for their father, traveling around in a campaign bus called the "Mitt Mobile, A Five Brothers Bus."

As a presidential candidate Romney sought the support of the business community and social conservatives. He reversed moderate positions on abortion and gay rights to take a hardline conservative position on them, and on opposition to illegal immigrants. Opponents charged he changed too often. Romney was a leader in fund-raising, augmented by over $35 million from his own fortune. However he was little known outside of Massachusetts, so his strategy was to play for early wins in Iowa and New Hampshire, then "sling-shot" the momentum into national visibility. Romney won the Michigan primary on January 16th, 2008, with 39% of the vote, edging out McCain with 30% and Huckabee with 16%. Romney was favored to win in the state of his birth, where his father, George Romney was governor from 1963-1969. After losing both the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary (to Huckabee and McCain, respectively), Romney won a low-publicized Wyoming caucus. On January 19, Romney easily won the Nevada caucuses by 37 percentage points when there were seven candidates on the ballot, however, on that same day he placed a distant fourth in the South Carolina primary. After a disappointing performance on Super Tuesday, Romney announced the suspension of his campaign on Thursday 7th February. He expressed his wishes not to divide the Republican party and later endorsed Senator John McCain of Arizona. Commentators correctly speculated on his chances for a return effort in 2012.

Fundraising

Mitt Romney had done well in fund raising. During his first fund raiser as a presidential candidate, he raised $6.5 million dollars compared to the claimed original goal of only $1 million. During the first quarter Romney raised more money then any other Republican presidential candidate with $23 million. However, a substantial portion of his funds ($17 million) came from his own personal wealth. [1]

2012 Presidential campaign

In April 2011, Romney announced his candidacy for President of the United States for the 2012 election, running as a Republican.[36] Romney was criticized throughout the primary season for being a Republican In Name Only due to his liberal views on social issues as governor and his flip-flops, as well as a controversial business record. His main competitors during the primaries were former conservative Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, Pro-Life Senator Rick Santorum, and libertarian Congressman Ron Paul. Romney ended up winning the vast majority of contests, though the race remained close in delegate count throughout. Romney together with Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan are running against President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden in an election to be held on November 6, 2012. During the campaign, Romney was criticized for saying that the 47% of Americans who do not pay income taxes consider themselves to be 'victims'.

Prior to his campaign for president in 2012, Romney had been criticized for flip-flopping on key social issues:

  • Mitt Romney once changed his positions on gun control. He was originally for it, but recently joined the National Rifle Association, an organization opposed to it.
  • Romney changed his position on immigration shortly before the 2012 Presidential Election. He originally supported amnesty for certain illegals and moratoriums on criminal prosecution for drug dealing by illegal immigrants. It is possible that Romney is trying to erode President Obama's support in the Latin community in places like Nevada, where immigration is a hot-button issue and Obama's victory in 2008 was by only a few percentage points.

Romney was defeated in the election. It is speculated that Romney's inability to connect with core conservatives and his history of flip-flopping on many issues (only a few years before his first candidacy for President) cost him the election.

See also

References

  1. http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/04/presidential-debate-drew-more-than-70-million-viewers/
  2. Romney to the Rescue: Mitt Romney's Got the Right Stuff for 2008 Kessler, Ronald, newsmax.com archives, retrieved April 27, 2012
  3. http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2012/05/gallup-romney-tops-obama-with-veterans/1
  4. http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/polls/226943-poll-romney-opens-up-big-lead-nationally
  5. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/us/general_election_romney_vs_obama-1171.html
  6. http://www.re alclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/oh/ohio_romney_vs_obama-1860.html
  7. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/va/virginia_romney_vs_obama-1774.html
  8. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/wi/wisconsin_romney_vs_obama-1871.html
  9. Staples, Toys R Us, Babies R Us, Clear Channel Radio, Dunkin Donuts, Domino's Pizza, The Weather Channel, Burger King, Sealy Mattress, Baskin Robbins, Outback Steakhouse, Guitar Center, Gymboree, Bonefish Grill, Burlington Coat Factory, Carrabba's Italian Grill, Michael's, to name a few
  10. Michael Kranish, "The Making of Mitt Romney: Mormon church obtained Vietnam draft deferrals for Romney, other missionaries" June 24, 2007. The Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/news/politics/2008/specials/romney/articles/part1_side_2/?page=1
  11. Lisa McGirr, Suburban Warriors(2001) pp. 141, 222.
  12. http://www.clubforgrowth.org/2007/08/mitt_romneys_record_on_economi.php
  13. http://www.ontheissues.org/Governor/Mitt_Romney_Government_Reform.htm
  14. Telegram & Gazette, 08/01/06
  15. http://www.americansformitt.com/
  16. http://hotair.com/archives/2009/12/04/romney-on-huckabee-unlike-some-people-i-never-pardoned-anyone/
  17. Telegram & Gazette, 02/27/03
  18. http://www.nysun.com/editorials/khatemi-at-harvard/38903/
  19. http://www.iowapolitics.com/index.iml?Article=96543
  20. America's Culture and Values mittromney.com
  21. http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2005/07/03/clarity_sought_on_romneys_abortion_stance/?page=2
  22. http://web.archive.org/web/20021218005104/www.romneyhealey.com/issues/4
  23. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_w9pquznG4
  24. http://web.archive.org/web/20021218005104/www.romneyhealey.com/issues/3
  25. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57432292-503544/romney-says-hes-fine-with-gay-couples-adopting-children/
  26. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/05/07/romney-taking-credit-for-auto-industry-success/
  27. http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/romney-defends-romneycare_560953.html
  28. http://www.mittromney.com/Issue-Watch/Immigration
  29. IowaPolitics.com: Romney Touts Strong Stance On Illegal Immigration
  30. http://www.foxnews.com/wires/2007May24/0,4670,RomneyGays,00.html
  31. http://www.boston.com/yourlife/health/diseases/articles/2007/02/11/romneys_stem_cell_view_may_upset_the_right/
  32. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/10/08/romney-hope-is-not-strategy-in-middle-east/
  33. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/us-election/9168533/Mitt-Romney-Russia-is-Americas-number-one-geopolitical-foe.html
  34. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/10/13/romney-ryan-call-china-cheaters-in-global-economy-obama-soft-on-issue/
  35. http://evolution.about.com/od/Overview/tp/2012-Gop-Presidential-Candidates-On-Evolution.htm
  36. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/apr/11/mitt-romney-president-candidate

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