Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Social into that MastheadOverlay zone

Romney: ‘Obama has failed America’

By PHILIP ELLIOTT
June 2, 2011

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (REUTERS/Brian C. Frank)

Mitt Romney is opening his first formal day as a 2012 Republican presidential contender with a direct challenge to the man he wants to replace and is pitching himself as ready to repair the nation’s struggling economy. “Barack Obama has failed America,” he says.

In excerpts of a kick-off speech released ahead of his formal announcement Thursday, Romney’s campaign message homes in on the economic woes that top voters’ frustrations: a lack of jobs, persistent foreclosures and runaway spending in Washington.

It’s a pitch tailored to the conservatives who hold great sway in picking the GOP’s presidential nominee in Iowa and South Carolina — and the independents who are the largest politic bloc in New Hampshire. And it is as much a thesis on his viability as it is an indictment of Obama’s leadership.

“A few years ago, Americans did something that was, actually, very much the sort of thing Americans like to do: We gave someone new a chance to lead, someone we hadn’t known for very long, who didn’t have much of a record but promised to lead us to a better place,” Romney says, describing the man he hopes to face head-to-head in November 2012.

“At the time, we didn’t know what sort of a president he would make. … Now, in the third year of his four-year term, we have more than promises and slogans to go by. Barack Obama has failed America.”

In the speech, the former Massachusetts governor launches into a scathing critique of Washington, a place where he never has served. Decrying federal spending, the one-term governor promises, “My generation will pass the torch to the next generation, not a bill.”

Romney comes to a presidential contest that lacks a front-runner. In the past week, the still-jelling field became less certain with hints that Texas Gov. Rick Perry was considering a bid. Tea party darling Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota is inching toward a run, perhaps giving the anti-tax, libertarian-leaning grassroots movement a candidate to rally around.

Romney sought to claim a slice of that constituency when describing families struggling to get by.

“It doesn’t matter if they are Republican or Democrat, independent or libertarian,” Romney says in remarks he was to deliver at a farm in Stratham. “They’re just Americans. An American family.”

Meanwhile. Sarah Palin, her party’s 2008 vice presidential nominee, continued a bus tour that highlighted not only her potential to upend the race but also served as a contrast to the lackluster enthusiasm for those already running for president. She was set to appear in New Hampshire at a clambake Thursday, although her aides and advisers were not providing schedules and her supporters in the state were left looking for guidance.

Meanwhile, Romney has built an experienced political team, collected serious campaign cash and crafted a campaign that is ready to go full-bore. While his likely opponents have struggled to get the spotlight, Romney largely has worked in private to fine-tune his political machine. He has chosen to weigh in through statements and editorial pages instead of interviews with journalists or town halls with voters.

On Friday, Romney starts to shift that strategy. He has scheduled his first town hall-style meeting for Manchester and later planned to speak at a Faith and Freedom forum in Washington.

His speeches have honed his criticism of Obama and promised alternatives in the coming months. Yet party leaders haven’t rallied around him. To that end, Romney hopes his tough talk will inspire support.

“We are only inches away from ceasing to be a free market economy,” he says, decrying Obama’s health care overhaul — a federal version of the one Romney signed into law for Massachusetts.

“From my first day in office my No. 1 job will be to see that America once again is No. 1 in job creation.”

Copyright © 2011 The Associated Press

6 Responses to Romney: ‘Obama has failed America’

  1. Sandune

    June 2, 2011 at 9:30 am

    So Romney has declared his intentions to replace a failing Obama? In what way? Will we have to go through the whole social conservative game book first? The latest attack on individual freedoms is a potential ban on birth control. Anyone who has been familiar with the Mormons knows that breeding is the sole purpose of women. From their teens through their change of life, women serve one purpose and that is to add to the population of more Mormons! Or, will he ban marriages for same sex partners? These are high priority items for anyone who needs the RNC behind them. This may be his last chance to go as far as anyone can go in America. To do it as a member of the Jesus Christ Church of Latter Day Saints would be so stunning to the church that I would be shocked if Romney failed.

    I realize I cannot force anyone to read any book but if anyone has a doubt about the basic moral values of this church to first read “Under the Banner of Heaven.” I come from several members of the founders of this church and when I decided to read up on the history of the Pratt Brothers, I found adultery and murder as part of my heritage.

    How does Romney expect to make jobs? Or will he do what he did as Governor and fly his airplane into Salt Lake City on a regular basis to talk to the Mormon Prophet? The hypocrisy of this religion should be exposed.

  2. woody188

    June 2, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    Two things helped create the Great Depression. Fraud and inequality. I’d like to hear how the candidates would address these two things as Obama has done nothing to address either of them.

  3. jim0001

    June 2, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    Romney is a joke. Same as Barack Hussein Obama.
    Sick jokes but jokes nontheless.

    But we have a choice, America!

    A candidate who talks to the prophet or a candidate who talks to Rev’s. Wright and Farrakhan….
    A morman or a muslim. You choose.

    • Doug Thompson

      June 3, 2011 at 6:53 am

      Obama is not a Muslim. Do not use this web site to spread misinformation.

    • logtroll

      June 3, 2011 at 8:18 pm

      I heard from an undisclosed source that jim001 is a joke. Is this true?

      Be thankful that you are given a chance to refute the rumor.

  4. bogofree

    June 3, 2011 at 8:01 am

    His four years here in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts were quite pragmatic working in an overwhelming Democrat environment. I may not agree with Romney on many issues but he clearly demonstrated an ability to give a bit and take a bit.