By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Mitt Romney brought his presidential campaign to Alabama in a big way with a visit to Thompson Tractor’s Tarrant area location. Over 450 people supporters packed a bulldozer barn to hear the former Governor of Massachusetts share his vision for the country.
Gov. Romney standing in front of a Caterpillar off road dump truck and a Caterpillar track hoe said that “It is great to be among everyday Americans.” Gov. Romney said that his journey across the country and all the people he has met in his campaign travels have given him “greater confidence” about the future of the country. “We love this country. We love the principles on which this country was founded.” I can take you through all the policies and the list of concerns that the media asks about but it is not about that. It is about our kids and our grandkids.”
Gov. Romney said that the country is on a balance right now and warned that with four more years of Obama the nation will be something we would not recognize. “He (President Barack H. Obama) is leading this country in a way that is not creating greatness and not helping the American people like he could and that is why we are going to replace him in 2012.” We have a real choice in this country in what kind of America we are going to have. Are we going to be Like Europe with a bigger and bigger government taking more and more from us?” Gov. Romney said that Obama was leading the nation down the same liberal course that other nations have followed. “That is not the course I want.” “I want to Keep America as the land of opportunity.”
“This President is comfortable with trillion dollar deficits. Gov. Romney said that Obama has passed a $15 trillion national debt on to our kids and grandkids. “We are going to cut federal spending. We are going to cap federal spending and we are finally going to have a balanced budget but politicians always say that.” Gov. Romney said that his heart is the heart of a conservative business man. “Businessmen have to be fiscally conservative” or they won’t be in business for long. “I learned in 25 years of business how to balance budgets and how to cut back to things that are important so that you can grow and be successful.
Presidential Candidate Romney said his administration will prioritize spending. “We have to ask ourselves if a program is so critical that it is worth borrowing money from China to pay for it and on that basis we are going to get rid of some programs.” Gov. Romney said that a lot of necessary programs needed to be handed over to the states along with the funding. “I appreciate the federal workers and what they do but I want to link the pay and compensation of federal workers to that of the private sector. The people who are working for us should not be getting paid more than the people they are working for do.”
Gov. Romney said, “The President wants to raise our taxes a lot.” “This President (Obama) wants to raise the marginal rate from 35% to 40%. I want to cut the marginal rates for everyone by 20% and create more jobs.” Gov. Romney said that 24 million Americans are either unemployed or are underemployed. “Most businesses are not taxed at the corporate rate that is usually for the big corporations. They are taxed at the individual rate.”
Governor Romney said that President Obama has proposed about a trillion of cuts to the nation’s defense. “Let me tell you the state of our military. Our Navy is smaller than at any time since 1917. Our Air Force is older in the fleet and smaller in the fleet than it has ever been at any time since it was formed in 1947. Our troops have been stretched to the breaking point by multiple rotations to Afghanistan and formerly to Iraq and now the President wants to cut over 50,000 active duty personnel.” Romney said that the president is proposing hurting our soldiers and our veterans by cuts to their Tricare, the Military’s healthcare. Presidential candidate Romney said that he wants to increase the number of ships constructed from 9 a year to 15 ships a year, add more aircraft, add an additional 100,000 active duty personnel and “I want to give our veterans the care they deserve.” “This is important. Romney said, “It is not just about winning wars this is also about preventing wars. America’s strength is the greatest ally of peace the world has ever known.” “We must keep our military second to none and I will do that.”
“There is something else this President (Obama) is doing. I call it crony capitalism.” A practice where “the government rewards its friends: Solyndra, Tesla, and interone. This is businesses where some Democratic fundraisers needed some money so he (Pres. Obama) gave them $500 million. Now they have gone bankrupt,” Romney said. He is also helping his friends the union bosses. He is taking care of them in a big way. President Obama passed an executive order that if you want to work on a federal project you have to use union labor. He put “union stooges on the National Labor Relations Board.” Romney said, “We need to stand up for the freedom of American workers.” “We need to put the market to work.” Gov. Romney displayed a chart showing the decline of American manufacturing jobs since 1975. In 1975 we had ~18 million manufacturing jobs today we have 1~3 million. In 1975 we had ~6 million union manufacturing jobs now down to ~1 million union manufacturing jobs. “You can see that the total number of manufacturing workers have come down a lot and that decrease was mostly union workers.” “In many cases Unions have asked too much and have killed the businesses that they used to work for.” Gov. Romney said we should not force unions on the American workers. He promised to end the favoritism for union workers for federal jobs. The former Mass. Governor also said, “I don’t want the unions to be able to make money out of their workers’ paychecks in dues and give it to the candidates chosen by the union bosses. People should have the freedom to give their money to the candidate they want.”
Gov. Romney said that in a Romney Presidency, “We are not going to have these trillion dollar deficit that are taking us potentially toward a wall like Greece did. We are going to get energy again by Drilling off shore, by drilling in ANWAR, by drilling in North Dakota, and by building the Keystone Pipeline.”
Governor Romney said that President wants to make us more like Europe. “I don’t think we want to be more like Europe. Europe doesn’t work in Europe. America needs to become more like America, the America that was the dream of our founders.”
Governor Romney was introduced by Fort Payne native Randy Owens who is the lead singer for the popular Country music group, ‘Alabama.’ The popular musician and cattleman said, “We have an opportunity to show Alabama and the rest of the United States who we want to be President of the United States I have never done this before (endorsed a candidate for President), but this is important.” “We need a president who is not ashamed that America is the greatest nation in the world.”
Co-Chairman of Romney’s Alabama Campaign, Congressman Mike Rogers said, “Four years ago me and Kay Ivey were co-chairs of the Romney Committee when Gov. Romney dropped out of the race for the good of the party. I told Mitt Romney then that it took Ronald Reagan to turn the country around after Jimmy Carter. I was convinced then that he (Obama) was another Jimmy Carter. I just did not realize that he was Jimmy Carter on Steroids.” Rep. Rogers said that Gov. Mitt Romney is who we need to turn the country around “after our long national nightmare.”
Co-Chairwoman and Alabama Lieutenant Governor Kay Ivey said, “We in Alabama know that Mitt Romney can beat Barack Obama.”
The Friday event was hosted by Thompson Tractor Company. Mike Thompson welcomed everyone to his facility and said, “Caterpillar makes the best equipment in the world.” “We are a worldwide company.”
According to the Wall Street Journal, Gov. Mitt Romney currently has 454 delegates. Senator Rick Santorum has 217 delegates, Speaker Newt Gingrich has 107, and Rep. Ron Paul has 47. It takes 1144 delegates for a candidate to secure the Republican nomination for President.
The Republican Primary will be on Tuesday, March 13th. Alabama has a combined Primary this year. Local offices, congressional races, and state wide offices will all be on the same ballot as the Presidential race. The Democratic Primary is also on March 13th. Incumbent President Barack Obama is unopposed in the Democratic Primary. He will face the Republican nominee in the November 6th General Election.