Business Leaders Supported Mitt Romney for President
2008 Presidential Primary (Partial List- e.g. Florida alone had > 80 business leaders supporting his campaign)
Steven Reinemund Don Keough David Brandon
Jack Welch Jack Taylor Arthur Blank
Robert Ulrich Edward Lampert
Kevin Rollins John Donahoe Michael Jordan
William Stavropoulos Charles Schwab
Alan Fishman C Robert Henrikson
David Neeleman Robert Nardelli Rick Wagoner
R David Yost
Stephen Bechtel, Jr
Harold C. Simmons
William DeWitt Jr.
William Barron Hilton
Pepsico - Chairman, CEO The Coca-Cola Co - former President Domino's Pizza - CEO
GE - CEO 1981-2001 Enterprise Rent-A-Car - Founder Home Depot - Co-Founder, Atlanta Falcons - Owner Abbott Laboratories - Chairman, CEO
Target - Chairman, CEO Kmart - Chairman
Intel - Chairman, CEO 1998-2005
Intel - Chairman, CEO
Dell - CEO 2004-07 eBay - CEO EDS - Chairman, CEO
Dow Chemical - Chairman Charles Schwab Inc - Chairman, CEO
Washington Mutual - CEO Sept 2008 MetLife - Chairman, CEO 2006-present
Wells Fargo - Chairman, CEO
JP Morgan Chase - Chairman, CEO
Citigroup - Chairman, CEO 2002-07
The Blackstone Group - Chairman, CEO (Private Equity firm valued over $40B)
Union Pacific - former Vice-Chairman, Southern Pacific - former Director, Qwest - former Director, Chairman
JetBlue - Founder Chrysler - Chairman, CEO GM - Chairman, CEO
Global Crossing Ltd - former Chairman
AmerisourceBergen - CEO
CVS Pharmacy - Chairman, CEO
Countrywide Financial - Co-Founder
Chesapeake Energy - Chairman, CEO
Occidental Petroleum - Chairman, CEO
Valero Energy - Chairman, CEO
Merck - Chairman, CEO 1994-2005
Bechtel Group - Co-Owner
Valhi - Chairman ($1.6B Corp in chemical, component and waste industries)
Koch Industries - Director, Executive VP
Clear Channel Entertainment - CEO
Orkin Inc - CEO
Waffle House Inc - CEO
New England Patriots - Chairman, CEO
Arizona Diamondbacks - CEO
Cincinnati Reds - President, CEO
Orlando Magic - Owner
Milwaukee Brewers - Principle Owner
St. Louis Cardinals - Chairman
Joseph Abboud Worldwide - Chairman, Fashion Designer
HCA Inc - Chairman, CEO
Hilton Hotels - Co-Chairman
“When Romney took office as Governor of Massachusetts, the S&P was threatening to downgrade the state’s debt. Romney met with them in their offices in New York, invited them up to Boston and met with them in his office, and laid out a debt reduction plan that instilled so much confidence in the S&P folks that they not only relented on the downgrade, they upgraded Massachusetts debt.”
"The Romney-Ryan ticket gets another boost today when about 400 prominent economists from industry and academia endorsed his economic revival and jobs plan.
"We came across an advance copy of the statement which reads: "We enthusiastically endorse Governor Mitt Romney's economic plan to create jobs and restore economic growth while returning America to its tradition of economic freedom. The plan is based on proven principles: a more contained and less intrusive federal government..."
“Between January 2003 and December 2006, Massachusetts was one of seventeen states to accelerate its job growth every year (creating more jobs each year than were created the year before), and one of only two states — Illinois being the other — to accelerate its job growth by at least 20,000 jobs each year. Massachusetts was one of the top ten most-improved states (seventh overall) in terms of job creation, going from 49th in the nation in the first year of the Romney Administration to 36th in the nation in the last year.”
At the time Mitt Romney became governor, Massachusetts had the most job losses in the nation and was ranked 50th (at the bottom) in the increase in unemployment. The year he left office Massachusetts was 12th best in the nation in its employment trend and had added tens of thousands of jobs. (See Massachusetts economic record.)
“The [Obama] ad also rehashes the claim that under Romney, “Massachusetts fell to 47th in job creation” ...
“The state ranking for job growth went from 50th the year before Romney took office, to 28th in his final year. It was 47th for the whole of his four-year tenure, but the ranking was improving, not declining, when he left.”
Unlike Mitt Romney, who substantially lowered the unemployment rate in Massachusetts (see Gov. Romney's economic record) even though it was increasing when he took office, the national unemployment rate under Obama has been higher every month of his tenure than the month he took office. When he took office it was 7.8%, and the unemployment rate has never dropped below 8% since then.
“In promoting a big fiscal stimulus earlier this year, two of the administration's top economists, Christina Romer and Jared Bernstein, estimated that the unemployment rate would not go above 8% if stimulus were enacted. It has been well above that rate since February and is now above 10%.”
To the contrary, a net total of nearly a million jobs have been lost nationally under Pres. Obama. (Yes, although there have been a small number of jobs created in recent months, overall, a large number of jobs have been lost under Obama's watch, much more than have been created.)
“...after reviewing numerous corporate filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, contemporary news accounts, company histories and press releases, and the evidence offered by both the Obama and Romney campaigns, we found no evidence to support the claim that Romney — while he was still running Bain Capital — shipped American jobs overseas.”
“The Obama campaign complains that we got a key fact wrong in our June 29 article, “Obama’s ‘Outsourcer’ Overreach.” We strongly disagree. We find the Obama campaign’s evidence to be weak or non-existent, and contrary to statements Romney has made on official disclosure forms under pain of federal prosecution.
“The Obama complaint claims we erred in saying Mitt Romney gave up active management of Bain Capital in early 1999 to run the 2002 Winter Olympics...
“And after reviewing evidence cited by the Obama campaign, we reaffirm our conclusion...
“The Obama campaign’s objections are contained in a six-page letter sent to us (and — without notice to us — to other news organizations as well). It cobbles together selective news snippets and irrelevant securities documents in an attempt to show that Romney was still running Bain Capital on a part-time basis while he was also running the Olympics committee.
Fmr. Gov. John Sununu on Romney and Obama outsourcing - MSNBC with Andrea Mitchell - Jul 10, 2012
Mainstream media outlets agree, including the New York Times:
“ “It’s a disconnect between the ownership interest and managerial functions,” said Harvey L. Pitt, who served as S.E.C. chairman under President George W. Bush. “When Bain takes positions in public companies, they’re required to show anyone who has an ownership interest that could be the effective equivalent of control. So Romney has to be shown on those filings. If they didn’t show them on those filings, they would have broken the law. But it has nothing to do with who’s actually running Bain Capital.”
“Indeed, no evidence has yet emerged that Mr. Romney exercised his powers at Bain after February 1999 or directed the funds’ investments after he left... And financial disclosures filed with the Massachusetts ethics commission show that he drew at least $100,000 in 2001 from Bain Capital Inc. — effectively his own till — as a “former executive” and from other Bain entities as a passive general partner.”
“Facts don't support Obama's charges against Romney
“Editor's note: David Gergen is a senior political analyst for CNN and has been an adviser to four presidents. A graduate of Harvard Law School, he is a professor of public service and director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government...
“As the New York Times reports Monday, there was an expectation at first that Romney might return to active management of Bain so he did not sever his ownership ties right away -- an additional reason why his name was not struck from documents for a while. The Times account goes on to say there is no evidence that during this interim he was actively engaged in managing the firm...
“FactCheck.org, a respected website that nails candidates for inaccuracies, earlier investigated the whole issue of Romney's departure and reached a conclusion that he was telling the truth. Last week, little noticed by Romney's critics, FactCheck went back, reviewed the evidence again, and based on what we know so far, reaffirmed its earlier conclusion. FactCheck's recent article was co-written by a man who was once a top investigative journalist for CNN. (The piece last week also recalled an Associated Press report on the Olympics that said in his early tenure at the Olympics, Romney was working 112-hour weeks to save the Salt Lake City games. Does this sound like a man who was also managing a private equity firm on the East Coast?)
“Last week, in another article that critics tend to ignore, Fortune reported that it had obtained confidential documents that Bain gave to prospective investors in advance of that seventh round offering in 2000. The prospectus is the way a company such as Bain informs possible investors who will manage their money. The prospectus listed 18 managers at Bain who would have responsibility. Romney's name was not among them.”
During Governor Romney's tenure from 2003-7, Massachusetts dropped from 13th to 17th in national tax burden rankings. Gov. Romney created the 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 budgets (and slashed spending in the existing 2003 budget as soon as he entered office). Massachusetts' combined state and local tax burden was the same in 2007, the year he left office, as it was in 2003 when he took office, at 9.9%.
However, he cut taxes while city and county governments within the state raised them, which along with Massachusetts residents being charged increased taxes by other states, caused a small bulge in the tax burden in the years in between. But the tax burden ended at the same level in the year of his final budget as in the year he entered office, with the help of the tax cuts that he made.
This improvement in tax burden rankings occurred while Massachusetts experienced the worst economic situation in the nation and had the highest ratio in the nation of democrats controlling the legislature, a veto-proof 85%, whose leadership stated intentions to raise taxes.
Contrast that with other fmr. and current republican governors:
For comparison, when examining FL Gov. Crist, AK Gov. Palin, AR Gov. Huckabee, MN Gov. Pawlenty, and TX Gov. Perry, their state's tax burdens increased from 0.4% to 0.9%.
The tax burden on citizens of each state includes the taxes they must pay their own state and that they must pay other states.
As noted on the 'Record as Governor' page, taxes that Massachusetts citizens actually paid to Massachusetts dropped during Mitt Romney's term in office from 7.33% to 6.99% although the overall tax burden started and ended at 9.9%, due to other states taxing Massachusetts residents more, from 2.6% of their income to 2.9%.
STATE ECONOMICALLY RANKED #1: With Increased Lead During Romney's term in office
“The U.S. is in the midst of its third major economic transformation of the last 120 years, equivalent in scope and depth to the emergence of the factory economy in the 1890s and the mass-production, corporate economy in the 1940s and 1950s. This means states must act decisively to encourage entrepreneurship or be left behind in this New Economy...
“The study, based on similar ITIF studies in 1999 and 2002, uses 26 indicators—such as educational attainment of the workforce and number of new startups and business failures—to provide detailed rankings on how states are adapting to the challenges of a global, entrepreneurial, and knowledge-based economy...
“The state farthest along the path to the New Economy is Massachusetts. Topping the list in 1999 and 2002, Massachusetts' lead over other states in 2007 has increased—with a concentration of software, hardware, and biotech firms supported by universities such as MIT, Harvard, and others. The state had the fourth-highest increase in per capita income, according to the study.”
“Ronald Reagan raised taxes as governor of California, imposing a $1 billion tax increase his first year in office. It was the largest tax hike by a governor in the nation's history, raising income, corporate, sales and inheritance taxes. Five years later, Reagan raised taxes again by another $1.5 billion...
“But even Reagan didn't stop the growth of state government: While he was governor of California, the budget increased from $4.6 billion to $10.2 billion...
“Every single budget Romney submitted included income tax cuts -- all of which were rejected by the 85-percent Democratic Legislature. (The last time Massachusetts legislators approved an income tax cut was when it was attached to a bill raising their own salaries by 55 percent.) ...
“He cut state spending by $600 million, including reducing his own staff budget by $1.2 million, and hacked the largest government agency, Health and Human Services, down from 13 divisions to four. He did this largely by persuading the Legislature to give him emergency powers his first year in office to cut government programs without their consent.
“Although Romney was not able to get any income tax cuts past the Democratic Legislature, he won other tax cuts totaling nearly $400 million, including a one-time capital gains tax rebate and a two-day sales tax holiday for all purchases under $2,500.
“He also vetoed more bills than any other governor in Massachusetts history, before or since. He vetoed bills concerning access to birth control, more spending on state zoos, and the creation of an Asian-American commission -- all of which were reversed by the Legislature.”
“Republican Mitt Romney is the most market-friendly of the major presidential hopefuls, while Bill Richardson scores best among Democrats. Our exclusive scorecard shows how the candidates stack up on taxes, health care, energy -- and more.”
As Barron's notes, it is America's premier financial magazine. It has been printed since 1921 by Dow Jones & Company (which also prints the Wall Street Journal), and is named after Clarence W. Barron, who is considered the founder of modern financial journalism (Wikipedia).
OBAMA CAMPAIGN SPINNING ROMNEY'S DEBT:
Governor Romney erased a $3 billion debt in the budget that he inherited, without raising taxes, and replenished a depleted rainy day fund with a $2 billion surplus by the time he left office. (See his economic record.)
But now the Obama administration and their supporters are criticizing Gov. Romney for inheriting long term bond debt he could not erase, that placed Massachusetts as 1st in bond debt.
This is ironic, since Obama has overseen unprecedented federal debt. (See below.)
The following gives more details on Massachusetts long term, bond debt:
When a county or a community builds a school, jail or other kind of facility they often take out a long term bond to pay for it.
When a state government needs to build a college or university building, road system or other kind of facility, they also take out long term bonds.
In Governor Romney's case, these long term bonds, which often don't expire for 15-20 years, existed before he came into office, and would not expire until after he left office.
Following years of heavy increases in bond debt, Massachusetts was ranked 1st in bond holdings, the amount of this long term debt, the year immediately before he was governor.
Since these bonds did not expire until years after he left office, the ranking continued for years afterwards as well. There was nothing he could do to change this ranking, to lower it below 1st or 2nd, while he was governor. (Massachusetts did fall to 2nd his first year as governor and then again a few years after he was governor.)
What he could do is what he did: he cut this spending, what is known as capital expenditures, by more than half during his tenure.
Gov. Romney explains how he lowered capital expenditures (long term bonds for infrastructure)
When Mitt Romney ran for governor, he criticized the unrestrained, more extravagant spending that grew this bond debt, which led to his inheriting the #1 position in bond debt.
He was right to do so.
His opponent, the state treasurer, had promised to reduce this debt but instead oversaw it grow over 1/3 larger in size during the previous 4 years.
Although he was much more restrained in what capital expenditures he allowed, articles seem to revel in the fact that he once criticized a rival for such spending and now is being criticized by his current rival for that same spending, which took place before he became governor, and resulted in a #1 ranking in bond debt before, during and after his tenure.
The only irony is that he is blamed for a problem, or bonds, that he inherited, all while he was much more judicious on capital spending, which creates new bond debt.
The Annenberg Foundation offers their insight on this issue:
“An ad from the Obama campaign claims Massachusetts ranked No. 1 in state debt per person when Mitt Romney was governor. It’s true, but there’s less there than meets the eye... Massachusetts has ranked either first or second in debt per capita in each of the past 11 years... One could even argue that Romney slowed the growth rate of long-term debt compared with the four years before he took office...
“First, we should note that this is not the same kind of debt we hear about with the federal government. The Massachusetts debt referred to in the ad is long-term debt for capital improvements, bonds to pay for such things as road or bridge repair, to erect new buildings at the University of Massachusetts or to expand courthouses. That’s not the same as piling up yearly deficits to support operating expenses the way the federal government is. In fact, like most states, Massachusetts requires balanced budgets...
“Long-term debt went from $16 billion (see A-22) on Jan. 1, 2003, just before Romney took office, to $18.7 billion (see A-23) on Oct. 1, 2006, three months before he left. That’s an increase of $2.7 billion...
“Massachusetts ranked second in 2003, the year Romney took office, according to Moody’s. And it was first in 2002... Massachusetts ranked second behind Connecticut in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
“In fact, the pace of the state’s rising long-term debt load actually slowed during Romney’s time as governor.
“In a comparable length of time before Romney took office — from June 30, 1999, to Jan. 1, 2003 — the long-term debt in Massachusetts went from nearly $12 billion to $16 billion (see A-23), a $4 billion increase. That’s a 34 percent increase, compared with the 16.4 percent increase during Romney’s years [a slowdown of over 50%] ...
“Moody’s provides data on debt as a percentage of personal income. This statistic more closely aligns with residents’ ability to pay... Massachusetts has consistently ranked second among states with regard to debt as a percentage of income in each of the last 12 years — before, during and after Romney’s term as governor. And last, we should note that Massachusetts has maintained an excellent bond rating. It was Aa2 throughout the 2000s, considered a very low risk for potential investors.” [See Romney vs. Obama's credit ratings]
(Under this trend, if Obama were to win a 2nd term, he would create more debt under his watch than all the other presidents in history combined!)
Under President George W. Bush, the national debt as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew from 34.7% the end of 2000 right before he took office, to 40.5% the end of 2008 right before he left office.
Under President Barack Obama, the national debt has grown in his first three years in office to 67.7% of GDP! That is an alarming figure:
“Over the past few years, the federal government has been recording budget deficits that are the largest as a share of the economy since 1945. Consequently, the amount of federal debt held by the public has surged. By the end of this year, CBO projects that the federal debt will reach roughly 70 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), the highest percentage since shortly after World War II.”
“According to the 2010 budget, the debt in public hands was supposed to fall in relation to GDP from 67 percent in 2010 to less than 66 percent this year. If only. By the end of this year, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), it will reach 70 percent of GDP.
“These figures significantly understate the debt problem, however. The ratio that matters is debt to revenue. That number has leapt upward from 165 percent in 2008 to 262 percent this year, according to figures from the International Monetary Fund. Among developed economies, only Ireland and Spain have seen a bigger deterioration.”
“The money the U.S. government owes to foreign entities rose to a record $5.2923 trillion in June, according to data released by the U.S. Treasury Wednesday afternoon... in June, the U.S. government borrowed an additional $34.2 billion from foreign entities in order to fund U.S. government operations.
“The U.S. government’s indebtedness to foreign interests has grown by 72.3 percent during President Barack Obama’s term in office... Entities in the People’s Republic of China remain the largest holders of U.S. government debt.”
“• The projected $1,845 billion budget deficit represents a staggering 13.1 percent of GDP. This is more than double the previous postwar record of 6.0 percent of GDP in 1983. More than 46 cents of every dollar Washington spends in 2009 will be borrowed.”
“For the first time in history, the debt of the United States does not possess a perfect AAA rating. Standard & Poor’s announced publicly this evening that they have downgraded US debt one notch to an AA+, after allowing the Obama administration the afternoon to try and persuade them otherwise...
“It says something about Obama and his administration that they had nothing of worth – no plan, no anything – that could convince the S&P to at least hold off on the historical downgrade. In fact, there is no indication that the Obama administration even made any attempts to contact S&P until the S&P called them this afternoon.”
“The U.S. lost its esteemed AAA credit rating after being downgraded by Standard & Poor's Friday, eroding the elite standing it has held in global markets for more than 70 years.
“The nation's credit rating was cut to AA+ after S&P said the compromise made by Congress and President Obama this week to cut spending and boost the debt ceiling "falls short of what, in our view, would be necessary to stabilize the government's medium-term debt dynamics... near-term progress containing the growth in public spending, especially on entitlements, or on reaching an agreement on raising revenues is less likely" ...
“S&P, in a statement Saturday, said the U.S. was downgraded based on the "current level of debt, the trajectory of debt as a share of the economy, and the lack of apparent willingness of elected officials as a group to deal with the U.S. medium term fiscal outlook." ...
“Asian central banks are the largest foreign holders of U.S. Treasury securities. China is the U.S.' largest foreign creditor, holding $1.16 trillion in Treasury securities, followed by Japan with $912.4 billion.
“Reacting to the downgrade, China's official news agency, Xinhua, criticized the U.S. for its "short-sighted political wrangling," and called for a new global reserve currency to replace the dollar. China "has every right now to demand the United States to address its structural debt problems and ensure the safety of China's dollar assets," Xinhua said.
“Earlier this week, China's central bank governor had urged the U.S. to "take responsible policy measures to handle its debt." ...
“A Chinese ratings firm, Dagong Global Credit Rating has also lowered the U.S.' rating, noting that the nation's debt is growing faster than its economy. But the little-known firm's move had little impact on markets this week.”
“Egan-Jones Ratings Co. cut the U.S. credit rating one step to AA, the second downgrade in nine months and two levels below its highest grade, with a negative outlook citing the nation’s increasing debt burden.
“U.S. debt has increased to 100 percent of gross domestic product, while debt climbed 23.6 percent from 2008 to 2010, the credit-rating firm said in a statement today. Egan-Jones lowered the U.S. grade to AA+ in a July...
“The downgrade was based on “the increasing debt load coupled with the fact that there has been no tangible progress in addressing the country’s growing debt to GDP” ratio, Sean Egan, president of Egan-Jones in Haverford, Pennsylvania, said today in a telephone interview. “Unfortunately, the debt is growing fairly rapidly while the GDP is not.”
“Standard & Poor’s cut the U.S. grade by one step to AA+ on Aug. 5 and has a negative outlook on the country’s debt. Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings assign the nation their top Aaa and AAA ratings respectively and also have negative outlooks.”
“ "The president really ought to personally sit down and meet with S&P," Romney said Wednesday on KCBQ radio. "I did that when I was governor; I met with the ratings agencies and talked about our future and tried to instill confidence in our future because, look, how they rate our debt and how they rate our future as a nation will affect the interest costs that we end up paying and will affect homeowners and borrowers all over the country." ”
(The index is sponsored by Bloomberg. Prior to that it was sponsored by ABC News back to 1985. The index has existed since 1977.)
“Median household income fell 4.8 percent on an inflation- adjusted basis since the recession ended in June 2009, more than the 2.6 percent drop during the 18-month contraction, the research firm’s Gordon Green and John Coder wrote in a report today. Household income is 7.2 percent below the December 2007 level, the former Census Bureau economic statisticians wrote.
“ “Almost every group is worse off than it was three years ago, and some groups had very large declines in income,” Green, who previously directed work on the Census Bureau’s income and poverty statistics program, said in a phone interview today. “We’re in an unprecedented period of economic stagnation.” ...
“The average duration of unemployment increased to a record 41 weeks in November and remains at 39 weeks, Labor Department data show. Almost 5.2 million Americans have been out of work for at least six months.”
“Official figures leave no doubt as to the alarming rise in federal welfare payments since the president took the oath of office in January 2009. The Survey of Income and Program Participation from the U.S. Census Bureau showed that by the end of 2011, nearly 110 million individuals lived in households that received benefits...
“Recipients of food stamps under SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) ... [increased] to 45 million, reaching a yearly cost of $80 billion. In each one of Barack Obama’s first three years as president, the food stamps rolls grew by at least 5.5 million—the top three growth years in all of the program’s 40 year history [and is an increase of more than 50%]...
“The government currently spends more than $32,000 a year for each American household, nearly half of it borrowed and added to the devastating debt already imposed on our children and grandchildren. Even voters who remain apathetic about the presidential personality contest that absorbs pundits and the press can understand what these sums of misspent money mean to the fate of their families.”
“Under the leadership of President Obama, Democrats have repeatedly expanded dependence on government benefits...
“The 2009 stimulus suspended food stamp work requirements for able-bodied adults without dependents (and each subsequent Obama budget proposed to continue suspending these work requirements), contributing to dramatic increases in food stamp caseloads...
“[The Obama administration is] Letting anyone collect food stamps and Medicaid benefits, regardless of their savings or assets. Through administrative action and the passage of ObamaCare, the Administration has effectively removed asset limits for both food stamps and Medicaid recipients. This means that today even individuals with significant savings or assets can collect these government benefits, rather than turning to their own resources first for support. For food stamps, the Administration even supports a policy allowing anyone receiving an informational pamphlet about government services paid for with TANF funds to automatically qualify for food stamp benefits.”
Obama made promises of fiscal restraint, reducing the deficit at least by half, and possibly balancing the budget.
“Former treasury secretary Robert Rubin, who is advising Barack Obama, and former Hewlett-Packard head Carly Fiorina, who is advising John McCain, said on Face The Nation Sunday that a balanced budget is foreseeable despite a federal deficit that has ballooned to more than $400 billion...
“ "What Senator Obama has said is that he is committed to restoring sound, long-term fiscal conditions," Rubin continued... He said he'll pay for everything he's going to do with respect to Social Security and Medicare."
“Rubin said "we could absolutely get back" to a balanced budget.”
McCain “has no concrete plan to pay for these tax breaks, so his policies would actually add more than $2 or $3 trillion to the national debt over the next decade and weaken our economy even further... it is time to try something new.” — Barack Obama
“ “This is big,” wrote White House director of new media Macon Phillips in a February 23, 2009 blog post, ”the President today promised that by the end of his first term, he will cut in half the massive federal deficit we’ve inherited. And we’ll do it in a new way: honestly and candidly.”
“Indeed, President Obama did make that promise that day, saying, “today I’m pledging to cut the deficit we inherited in half by the end of my first term in office. This will not be easy. It will require us to make difficult decisions and face challenges we’ve long neglected. But I refuse to leave our children with a debt that they cannot repay — and that means taking responsibility right now, in this administration, for getting our spending under control.”
“The 2013 budget the president submitted today does not come close to meeting this promise of being reduced to $650 billion for fiscal year 2013.
“The president noted in that 2009 speech the Obama administration inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit...
“George Stephanopoulos asked White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew about this yesterday:
“STEPHANOPOULOS: Now, tomorrow’s budget’s going to make it clear that that promise will not be kept, not even close, really. The deficit will be well over $1 trillion for the fourth year in a row. Why?”
Alarming Update — Treasury reports U.S. is already past 100%, a decade earlier than the Congressional Budget Office predicted:
“The U.S. debt surpassed 100 percent of gross domestic product after the government's debt ceiling was lifted, Treasury figures showed Wednesday, according to AFP...
“With that authority, the public debt has climbed to $14.58 trillion, putting it just over the $14.53 trillion size of the country's economy in 2010.
“As the country moves into a league with deep-in-the-red nations like Italy and Belgium, fiscal conservatives say the fight to cut spending is far from over...
“The last time the debt topped the size of its annual economy was in 1947 during World War II, according to AFP. But the deficit at the time was driven by war spending -- a degree of spending that ebbed once the war ended. The nation's current deficits were exacerbated by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but are also driven in large part by entitlement programs that will not shrink without fundamental changes to their structure...”
Much spending was already put in place prior to his taking office as President (with his support by voting for it as Senator), but Obama added huge spending on top of it. For example, in February 2009, Obama's stimulus bill was passed by congress, with spending in the hundreds of billions starting immediately, in that fiscal year. (USeconomy.about.com)
As noted, this was the largest spending bill in the nation's history:
“The 2009 economic stimulus bill - The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act - represents the largest single government spending bill in our nation's history. The bill's $787 billion in spending and tax cuts is intended to stimulate the economy.”
In addition, rather than enormously adding to the existing spending, Pres. Obama could have immediately cut the existing spending, like what Gov. Romney did as soon as he took office, with the existing Massachusetts budget. (Mitt Romney's economic record)
Also worth noting, from the very day Obama presented his stimulus plan, Mitt Romney opposed it (contrary to Obama and democrat claims):
“ROMNEY: The stimulus plan, he let get away from him with Pelosi and Reid running it... he has to believe it's going to work, and he's spending an awful lot of money hoping, against all hope...
“— instead of spending money on a whole host of long-range programs that don't create jobs, he should have said, "Look, let's spend $450 billion or so, and let's use that money to do two things: one, reduce taxes on a permanent basis for middle income Americans, and No. 2, spend money on urgent priorities of our nation and not on things that are going to do anything other than create jobs. Jobs, jobs, jobs, that's what it's about."
“Unfortunately, by letting Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid put this bill together, they've come up with something which is not going to work as effectively as if they would have done what, frankly, what John McCain proposed. He put out a bill, a $400+ billion bill, to get the economy going. He was voted down on purely partisan lines, and it had at its centerpiece a middle-class tax cut and spending on urgent priorities...
“It was just about a year ago that a stimulus package was put in place. Money was sent out to the American taxpayers with the expectation that that would get the economy going again. It did not work.
“And that's why when Barack Obama is saying he's giving us a tax cut, Republicans are saying, "No, no, no. That's a check in the mail." It's a nice thing. Everybody likes them, but that's not a tax cut.
“Eliminating payroll taxes, for instance, for some class of individuals or reducing them, or reducing the tax rate for middle-income Americans, that's a tax cut, and that would have had a bigger effect on getting the economy going. That's what Republicans have been arguing.”
(What Romney supported, as noted, was a stimulus half that size, and in the form of tax cuts and other jobs stimulus as republicans had proposed and democrats rejected. Politifact called Obama's claim of Romney's support for Obama's stimulus as mostly false, not calling it completely false since Romney did support a pared down stimulus - Politifact.com)
In spite of the President's promises that the new levels of spending were temporary (see fiscal promises), this spending has remained at unprecedented high levels.
Actual Spending according to the Whitehouse has been:
“2009 - $3.517677 trillion
“2010 - $3.456213 trillion
“2011 - $3.818819 trillion (estimate)
“2012 - $3.728686 trillion (estimate)”
The historic budgets show that prior to Obama taking office the budgets were always under $3 trillion, and prior to President Bush taking office they were always under $2 trillion:
Billions of Taxpayer Dollars Used to Create Foreign Jobs:
“Obama handed over billions of dollars in loan guarantees and stimulus awards pursuant to his goal of putting one-million electric vehicles on the road... A $2.4 billion stimulus program to support battery production sent nearly half of its money to foreign firms, including two South Korean companies that used their awards to hire foreign nationals in Michigan to do work that Americans easily could have done...
“Obama's stimulus included over $8.5 billion in grants for wind farms that flowed overseas, despite Congressional criticism from both sides of the aisle. In total, over half of the money went to either foreign developers or foreign wind turbine manufacturers, creating thousands of jobs overseas with money that was supposed to create jobs within the United States. Even worse, hundreds of millions of dollars went to wind farms that began construction before the stimulus was passed. The end result of all this spending: the wind energy industry lost 10,000 jobs last year.
“As Obama was doling out over $2.3 billion in clean energy manufacturing tax credits that were supposed to create jobs in America, $880 million went to foreign firms. Worse still, some of those same recipients are now closing up shop and shipping jobs overseas...
“The largest recipient of Obama's program to jumpstart green energy projects was the Spanish Company Abengoa, which took in $2.7 billion in loan guarantees for three of its projects. Other projects importing foreign-made solar panels are, much in the same way as Fisker Automotive, choosing to make their products overseas.”
Country by country analysis of where Obama sent stimulus money, grants and federally granted and financed low interest loans is then documented.
Dozens of examples of stimulus money being granted to countries such as China, Russia and India are given, starting with this example:
“Swiss-Based Landis+Gyr Received Over $50 Million In Stimulus Contracts For Their Smart Grid Meters. Cathy Zoi, A Former Obama Energy Department Official, Held Over $250,000 Worth Of Stock In The Company As They Profited From Her Department's Policies. Zoi Had Previously Served As An Executive Director At Landis+Gyr Before Joining The Obama Administration.”
Obama's Job's Czar Jeffrey Immelt talking to India about outsourcing American jobs:
Interviewer: “What's the significance of 200 Americans landing on India soil? Exploring the big Indian market once again?”
Job Czar: “I think India is extremely exciting for all American business people today. I think that the notion that we are here at the same time the president is here is also quite exciting and quite historic... the infrastructure opportunities for companies like GE just makes India more exciting. I'm a globalist. So, basically I'm a big believer that it's a win-win game of global trade... and I believe the president sees it the same way.”
Interviewer: “So the debate of outsourcing in many ways is outdated because the concept of protectionism is more political than actually economic?”
Job Czar: “I actually believe that anytime the unemployment is almost 10% people are afraid. People are nervous. I understand that. I expect that... we also have to have a vision for our own country... but we live in a global economy. This notion of protectionism I think is not the way forward. It's the way backward. And therefore, we need to fight through that, and we need to make a better case for globalization.”
Dennis Kucinich, Democrat U.S. Rep. from Ohio: “The head of GE is the head of the President's jobs council, and he has a lot of expertise in creating jobs. Unfortunately, the jobs he's creating happen to be in China.
“And I'm concerned that GE has laid the groundwork to move more jobs to China, because they're right inside of NASA and the incubation of all kinds of new technology that the taxpayers are paying for, such as the technology that GE, famously now, have given to the Chinese. It was developed with U.S. taxpayers dollars. And that's going to have an adverse impact on our airline industry.
“The appearance and the fact of it are both terrible. There's no defense for this. Let's face it. If you want to have a jobs council, create jobs in America.”
Bill O'Reilly: “Why is the president doing it if it's ridiculous?”
Dennis Kucinich: “I can't explain why. Under Mr. Immelt GE moved 20% of its jobs out of this country.”
Rove: “We know the practice of these Chinese companies is to require as a price of doing business with them, of being their partner, that you surrender, that you turn over valuable technology... GE is talking of partnering with a company that does a lot of work with the Chinese military.
“So GE's sophisticated avionics is going to be put into a company that in essence supplies the Chinese military including its air force and its navy with vital aviation equipment.”
O'Reilly: “Jeffrey Immelt is responsible for the president's council on jobs and competitiveness. This takes jobs overseas to China, and it makes China more competitive against Boeing.”
Rove: “Are you surprised this administration is so tone deaf on this?”
O'Reilly: “This is a big deal. This is the top guy, and he takes the jobs and the competitiveness, and ships it over to China.”
Rove: “Be calm. Remember, this is the president who tried to put 3 people into his cabinet who didn't pay their federal income taxes. So why are you surprised that they have someone in charge of their jobs panel who is busy shipping jobs over to China? This is not the first example. They recently named, GE recently named, announced that they were going to take part of their medical equipment division, and move it to China. So yes, look, the administration is tone deaf on this.”
O'Reilly: “Are you saying that they just don't care about public perception? That the Obama administration doesn't care what these people do?”
Rove: “I think it's worst than that... I don't think that they think this is a problem.”
O'Reilly: “It is so outrageous, and so hypocritical.”
“The role of the jobs czar in this country is to get Americans back to work... But Immelt's success is only partially built on American jobs. Half his workforce is overseas and he is unapologetic for it...
“On Overtime, we take a look at some of GE's projects back home in the U.S., where Immelt has put an emphasis on research and development - R&D... One stop on Immelt's R&D tour: solar energy research. Seemingly unfazed by the unrealized promises and downright failures in the world of solar energy, Immelt thinks the technology holds great promise... On Overtime, GE tells Lesley that it will create 300-400 jobs when it builds the largest thin film solar plant in the country in the near future.
“That news might take a bit of sting off another recent announcement: GE is moving its 115-year-old x-ray unit from Waukesha, Wisconsin, to Beijing. It's all in a day's work for the U.S. jobs czar.”
Interviewer: “After receiving billions in bailout money, General Motors plans to move the Volt's technology to China...
“We've given them billions, billions of dollars for this project, and now China is going to be the beneficiary, not only of our technology, our money, but also our jobs.”
U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, Illinois: “We have wasted millions and millions of taxpayer dollars on this notion of green jobs, and now here's the latest example of GM shipping Research and Development of electric vehicles over to China. It sure looks like and smells like eventually production of the Volt is going to be done over in China...
“This issue here with GM, Eric, is really troubling. We bailed out this company. Obama's Car Czar, Mr. Ratner, is still going around saying what a great success the auto bailout is. They had to revise their estimates up that it's going to cost the American taxpayer right now, still about $24 billion. And now we're finding out that these green jobs are going to develop over in China?”
Interviewer: “Yep, Congressman, by the numbers, we gave them $50 billion. They gave us back 20 or so, I'm not sure the actual cash number. But we're also now saddled with a stock that came public, which means we own it as taxpayers, at $31 a share, it's trading in the low 20s right now. We may never see the billions that we bailed GM out for. We've also given them "green energy" loans, it goes on and on, state and local loans and grants to GM. Martin Motica, one of the auto analysts, I believe in Michigan, came up with a 250 thousand dollar per unit cost for the Volt. We're just bleeding money to them.”
U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, Illinois: “Most troubling, here is this president talking about it's make or break time for the middle class in jobs, and he continues to ship jobs overseas.”
“The Treasury Department continues “to revise upward the staggering losses inflicted on U.S. taxpayers.” ... a new Treasury report forecast that losses for GM were expected to reach $25 billion, which is $3.3 billion more than predicted earlier. Furthermore, since that report was based on GM’s stock price at the time of the report–15 percent higher than it is currently–those losses are likely understated...
“GM employed roughly 252,000 workers in 2008. The “new” GM currently employs 45,000 fewer workers–131,000 of whom are currently “outsourced” in foreign plants.”
Mitt Romney has a solution: repeal and replace Obamacare with sensible, cost effective solutions, and reform Social Security and Medicare:
“Romney continues to run an impressive presidential campaign. Last week, ... Romney delivered his most important speech yet. It was politically astute and substantively bold, ... Romney grasped the toughest issue — how to reform entitlements to avoid a fiscal catastrophe — and he sketched out a sophisticated way to address it.
“The speech was built around the theme that government should be simpler, smarter and smaller. First, he established his bona fides. Romney reminded his listeners that when he went to work at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, he inherited a $370 million deficit. He left behind a $100 million surplus that went into an endowment fund.
“Then he argued that over the decades government has become bloated and lethargic. In World War II, the Navy commissioned 1,000 ships a year and had 1,000 employees in the purchasing department. Today, Romney said, we commission nine ships a year but have 24,000 employees in the department.
“Romney then laid out a measured fiscal strategy, starting with a promise to bring federal spending down to 20 percent of gross domestic product, which is about the precrisis average. He then turned to entitlements...
“The experts were impressed. The Romney campaign operates like a smooth-running White House, with a process to identify the core issues, cull ideas and present options to the candidate.
“In his speech, Romney proposed some sensible Social Security reforms: gradually raise the retirement age and slow the growth of benefits for richer retirees. His Medicare plan is more radical because the problems are more fundamental...
“Romney proposed keeping Medicare just as it is for everybody currently in or close to the system. But he would slowly introduce a premium support system, with less-affluent beneficiaries receiving more support than more-affluent ones.
“Many reporters claimed that the Romney approach is similar to the Paul Ryan plan. It’s actually closer to the plan that Pete Domenici, a former Republican senator, and Alice Rivlin, a former Clinton budget chief, devised. Romney would create a premium support system, but he would also give seniors the option of a government-run insurance plan that works a lot like the current fee-for-service Medicare.
“This is politically smart... But it is also substantively smart...
“Romney is running in an atmosphere in which it is extremely difficult to remain serious and substantive. Yet he is doing it. Democrats should not underestimate him.”
“Social Security began running deficits in 2010, paying out $48.9 billion more in benefits than it received through payroll taxes. Nor will these deficits ever end, meaning that without reforms, Social Security will continue to add billions to the deficit and debt each year.”
“The trustees who oversee Social Security say the trust funds that support the program will run dry in 2033. At that point, Social Security will generate only enough tax revenue to pay about 75 percent of benefits, triggering automatic cuts unless Congress acts.”
“President Obama’s  budget includes $2 trillion in tax hikes over the next decade, more than $400 billion more than previously reported, according to a new Heritage Foundation analysis.
“In addition to allowing the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts to expire, raising taxes on job creators and taxing the energy industry, there are $128 billion in new taxes that the media and White House neglected to report on...
“OMB reports the tax hikes in areas other than the tax section, misleading readers into believing that the President’s tax hikes are smaller than they are in reality. Among them are the “Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee,” better known as the bank tax, which adds another $61 billion to the President’s tax hike total; a $44 billion tax hike from allowing the IRS to adjust a program integrity cap; a $48 billion increase of the unemployment tax; and a $1 billion hike of user fees for commercial navigation of inland waterways.”
“The joke is on the American people. As of April 1, the U.S. corporate tax rate of 39.2 percent became the world’s highest...
“Ever-increasing tax rates are causing U.S. companies to move their production elsewhere, taking away American jobs.
“Anheuser-Busch, for example, is an iconic, American-owned company. That was until Brazilian-Belgian company InBev initiated a takeover of the brewer, leading to more than 18,000 layoffs. More such takeovers are looming in the near future...
“Heritage’s Mike Brownfield further explains that the Obama administration is proposing measures like a “global minimum tax” that will actually make matters worse for U.S. companies.”
“Obama’s budget will raise taxes by $2 trillion- President Obama’s 2013 budget includes about $1.5 trillion in tax hikes. Other proposals bring the true size of President Obama’s tax hikes to over $2 trillion. This includes letting the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts expire for high-income earners and small businesses and imposing additional taxes on these groups. President Obama also proposes a higher death tax and the institution of new taxes, such as the punitive bank tax.”
It should also be noted that the spending during his first year included unprecedented bailout and stimulus packages, and the budget was supposed to go back down in the following years (which it didn't). To see data and graphics on how spending was supposed to proceed in the outgoing years, and fiscal promises Obama made, see the fiscal promises section above by clicking the following link:
Only 3.8 million jobs had been created over the last 27 months (not 4.3 million), and more importantly, the net total of jobs created since President Obama took office is —1.3 million jobs! (that's a minus number)
Yes, that's right. Overall, President Obama has lost over a million jobs since he took office!
“After losing jobs for 25 months in a row, our businesses have now created jobs for 27 months in a row, 4.3 million new jobs in all. The fact is, job growth in this recovery has been stronger than the one following the last recession a decade ago.”
Official government data shows that 4 of the previous 27 months had job losses totaling over 300,000, and most of the months reaching the positive side were anemic.
Furthermore, the official government data shows that following the job losses that occurred from 2001 through Aug 2003, the next 27 months had over 4.8 million jobs created, over 1 million more jobs than during the 27 months under Obama that he calls a recovery. (And in the next four months there was more than another million jobs added. In Obama's economy, he will not have a million new jobs in the next four months before the election. But Obama has repeatedly criticized Bush for his economic record, although Bush's is actually better.)
Official government data does show that the one thing Obama did get right is that the country did lose jobs for 25 months in a row (most while Barack Obama has been president).