Swarthmore Conservative: Romney for US president

For what it’s worth, I endorse Mitt Romney for President of the United States.

The 2012 presidential election will be a defining moment in the course of American history. Two competing visions of America will be presented, and the choice voters make will determine the direction America will take for far longer than the next four years.

One vision calls for more government, complete with more taxes, regulations and directives that stifle business growth. It calls for the full enactment of Obamacare, a job-killing piece of legislation placing more mandates on small businesses already suffering from the current economic climate. It asks Americans to allow the government to borrow more money on the backs of my generation, without providing concrete solutions for spending less. Rather, it asks to spend more.

The second vision will put America back on the right track to a better future. This vision is about smaller government, reducing the deficit and restoring America’s number one position in the world.
The candidate who will best present this vision, and, once elected, will carry out the necessary change to get America back on track, is Mitt Romney.

A businessman and former Governor of Massachusetts, Romney has the experience in both the private and public sectors needed to turn the economy around, the number one issue on the mind of Americans today. President Obama has failed to craft government policies that encourage investment and, in turn, create the jobs America needs. Nearly three years into his presidency, job growth remains stagnant, and the unemployment rate is still nine-percent. We need someone who has worked and created jobs in the business world to be President.

Romney is a competent leader who confronts obstacles head-on and gets results. He understands that issues are more complex than a five-second sound bite.

Romney’s plans for the country are well-thought out and, most importantly, attainable. His 59-point economic plan lays out realistic solutions to get our economy growing again. He proposes cutting the corporate tax rate to 25 percent and eliminating capital gains taxes for people making under $200,000 a year. He also proposes capping federal spending at twenty percent of the economy. All of these ideas can be crafted into legislation and actually passed by Congress.

Romney’s plan to eliminate the individual mandate in the Obamacare legislation is the most workable idea of all the candidates. He proposes using an Executive Order to exempt states from the mandate, making the most unpopular portion of the legislation optional for states from day one of his presidency. Other candidates’ plans are more about raising money and gaining votes than actual solutions to our country’s current issues. These include Perry’s no-so-flat “flat tax” and Cain’s “9-9-9” plan, neither of which would be able to be implemented.

Mitt Romney has the character necessary to lead America. As a young American, I am tired of the abhorrent behavior of some candidates and politicians in their personal lives. Romney is not that kind of politician. He has been married to his wife Ann for a solid 40 years, and raised five sons with her. Romney has never been plagued with scandals such as affairs, and a Romney administration will be free of these unnecessary distractions.

Romney also has the ability to argue conservative positions in a way that brings us together, rather than dividing us. There has been no other figure able to articulate conservative ideas in this way since President Reagan.

I am aware that many label Romney a “flip-flopper” and question his authenticity. It is true that some of Romney’s positions have evolved (for genuine reasons), particularly in the case of abortion. But each of these changes has moved Romney in a more conservative direction, a fact that should be embraced by conservatives. After all, Romney was running for office in Massachusetts, the most liberal state in the nation.

While Governor of Massachusetts, Romney stayed true to conservative government and created a surplus in a state long known for overspending. Romney managed this while still keeping Massachusetts schools performing as the best in the nation. He passed a complex healthcare reform bill aimed at eliminating the free-rider problem where taxpayers were responsible for people going to the hospital without insurance. Romney’s plan may have been complex, but at the same time it was simple in that the legislation only required individuals to purchase insurance or face a tax penalty, as long as the coverage was affordable. Romney did not try to restructure health insurance and delivery as Obamacare does. The program was also implemented on the state level, and Romney has said that while it worked in Massachusetts, it would not work on a federal scale. This is one stain on Romney’s record that is unsettling to conservatives, including myself, who worry about any more involvement of the government than is necessary. I believe Romney has explained this issue well enough, and I recognize that Romney kept healthcare coverage in the private sector with this legislation.

I am not sure what impact an endorsement by one writer in the bubble that is Swarthmore will have on the Republican primary. My aim here was for you to understand where I am coming from as a conservative, as I have done in each of the columns I have written this semester. I was asked early on this semester if I was a Swarthmore Conservative (a moderate Republican), or “The” Swarthmore conservative (a solid conservative who for some reason ended up here). I have thought about this a lot this semester, and I have determined I fall into the latter category.

This makes my Romney endorsement more complex, as you might imagine. My support for Governor Romney dates back to 2008, when Romney was considered the conservative candidate who could win. He embraced an ideology that fits my own, and offered the most competent enunciation of conservative ideas out of any of the candidates.

Romney still is this candidate to me today. I believe that, as president, Romney will be able to pass conservative reforms that make sense for the country. I also believe he will be able to stop the out-of-control spending in Washington, and ensure that actions in Washington do not inhibit further economic recovery.

We need a Republican on the top of the ticket who has the principles and character necessary to beat President Obama and actually lead this country. That person is Mitt Romney.

Tyler is a sophomore. He can be reached at tbecker1@swarthmore.edu.

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