US voters need to put Romney in White House
The Sunday Telegraph
November 03, 2012 5:27PM
TUESDAY will be crunch time for the voters of America and the thoughts of many Gillard government supporters will be with them.
Incumbent President Barack Obama has failed to deliver on his 2008 promises, just as Prime Minister Julia Gillard has failed her 2010 promises.
In both the US and Australia, largely Left-leaning media organisations have played down the failures of leadership and attempted to drive attacks on the personalities of their challengers.
In the US, the Obama campaign has tried to discredit successful businessman and politician Mitt Romney with bitter attacks on his religion and his standing with women.
Both Romney and Abbott have been pilloried for speaking the truth.
Last month, Obama voters made much of a frank response Romney gave to a supporter at a private gathering.
He had been asked how the election was shaping and replied: "Well, there are 47 per cent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what.
"There are 47 per cent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it.
"That that's an entitlement and government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what. I mean, the president starts off with 48, 49 ... I mean, he starts off with a huge number.
"These are people who pay no income tax; 47 per cent of Americans pay no income tax.
"So our message of low taxes doesn't connect. He'll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich.
"I mean, that's what they sell every four years. And so my job is not to worry about those people.
"I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.
"What I have to do is convince the 5 to 10 per cent in the centre, that are independents, that are thoughtful, that look at voting one way or the other depending upon, in some cases, emotion, whether they like the guy or not, what he looks like."
There were predictable media claims Romney was being disrespectful of low-income workers but the underlying truth about the spread of the entitlement mentality in the US was unchallenged. Yet Romney had the gumption to stand by his comments, though he admitted they were "not elegantly stated". His campaign, he said, was "about helping people take more responsibility and becoming employed again, particularly those who don't have work".
Many Americans and Australians would see nothing wrong with his approach. As one chatroom commentator noted: "Did I miss something? Since when is what Romney said surprising? Isn't this what we hear on discussion boards and forums, day in and day out from the Right? 'You're on welfare. You want a free handout. I work for a living, you don't. You're lazy. Get a job'.
"Who the hell thinks this is something new? The only thing new about it is hearing it being said in such stark terms from a presidential candidate in this day and age."
Obama promised to lift poor Americans out of the welfare trap but there are now more people on food stamps than ever before.
Gillard's record is just as bad, with more people on benefits and more long-term unemployed.
Obama inherited what he thought was a poorly-performing economy with annual deficits of around $US400 billion. Today they run at more than a trillion. Gillard inherited Treasurer Wayne Swan from her predecessor Kevin Rudd. As Treasurer, Swan has managed to convert a $70 billion surplus into a gross debt of more than $250 billion.
Obama's budgets rely on the US printing more money and borrowing more cash from the Chinese. Gillard's budgets rely on borrowing and money-shuffling accounting tricks.
Both leaders essentially believe in wealth redistribution through big central government.
During the 2008 campaign, Obama notoriously told Joe Wurzelbacher - Joe the Plumber - "when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody". But the Obama experiment has failed Americans, just as the Rudd-Gillard experiment has failed Australians.
Obama's monument to wealth redistribution is his Obamacare package that would centralise greater control of the American population in Washington. Gillard's monument is the carbon tax that affects every Australian, not just the 500 "biggest polluters" she claimed when she introduced it. Both have been responsible for introducing green energy policies that have cost jobs and hobbled their economies.
Neither Obama nor Gillard understand how economies work or how wealth is created. Both think their respective federal governments are the solution, their opponents think they are part of the problem.
Neither leader has shown either a great interest in, or an understanding of, foreign policy.
On Obama's watch, Osama bin Laden was killed by US troops but Obama tried to take credit for the operation. Gillard's foreign forays from East Timor to Malaysia and Indonesia have been embarrassing.
Obama is running on promises of change, just as he did four years ago. His years in office offer little to recommend him.
Romney had an enviable career in private business and a laudable record as governor of Massachusetts. He can point to achievements.
America remains Australia's most important international partner.
We need an America with a strong leader, Obama is not that person.