Sure, Lloyd Bentsen dropped Dan Quayle with his “you’re no Jack Kennedy” line, but in 2012, you need to both zing and educate – a kind of real time fact checking with wit that is both memorable and relatable to the American public. So here is some unsolicited advice to the President for some of the talking points he should expect to hear from Governor Romney on Tuesday night:
ECONOMY & TAXES
My tax plan will benefit everyone
Response: Mitt Romney’s tax plan is great for people like Mitt Romney – he gets rid of the estate tax, makes the Bush tax cuts permanent, then cuts taxes 20% on top of that and gets rid of taxation on the three ways the Governor makes money – dividends, carried interest and capital gains.
It’s simply not true that my plan cuts taxes by $5 trillion
Response: Mitt, just because two bloggers and a guy your campaign paid to produce a report say you aren’t cutting taxes by $5 trillion doesn’t mean it’s true.
Alternate Response: If a guy won’t show you his taxes, you probably shouldn’t trust him to show you the math on his tax cut after he gets elected.
We need a President who understands how to encourage job growth
Response: 5.2 million jobs have been created in the private sector in the last 2 and a half years, I think we’ve got that covered.
The economy is not growing fast enough
Response: Here’s what’s happening in the economy – the stock market is up almost 70% since I came into office, 401(K) balances have rebounded, states like Ohio and Michigan have lowered their unemployment rates substantially, we’ve had almost 3 continuous years of private sector job growth and we did all of this with no help from Congress, who blocked my jobs bill that would have added another 1 million people to the employment rolls. Don’t criticize the guy cleaning up his predecessor’s mess for not doing it fast enough.
My company helped nurture Staples and Sports Authority
Response: My Administration saved General Motors and Chrysler, both of which, I should note, you thought should go bankrupt.
I said I was wrong when in the way I characterized 47% of our country. I care about 100% of Americans
Response: I will take the Governor at his word, but in my experience, people are being most truthful when they think cameras are not around, not when they know they are there.
I’m going to repeal and replace Obamacare
Response: Yes, on Day One, according to your ads, which means on January 20, 2013 senior citizens will pay more for prescriptions and lose free preventative care check ups, kids under 26 will be denied the right to stay on their parents health plan, lifetime caps on coverage will be reinstated and people with pre-existing conditions will be denied coverage.
I want people to have access to health coverage
Response: Governor, you said the uninsured should just use the emergency room.
THE BIG THREE
Mr. President, you cut $716 billion from Medicare
Response: My plan reduces payments to insurers and hospitals and extends the life of the program. Your running mate took that same $716 billion and wants to give it to the wealthy by cutting their taxes.
As the President said, we’re not that far apart on Social Security reform
Response: We do not have the same vision for Social Security. Your running mate sponsored a bill to partially privative Social Security. It was too radical for George W. Bush.
I think Medicaid should be sent back to the states as block grants
Response: I want to expand coverage under Medicaid so more people, particularly the poor and elderly, have access to health insurance. Block granting Medicaid would result in millions losing coverage, which is not only cruel but will cost all of us more money in the long run.
We need sensible immigration reform
Response: You want people to self-deport. I signed an Executive Order to keep undocumented young people here and Republicans filibustered the DREAM ACT in Congress. The only thing stopping us from getting real reform are your friends in the Senate.
As Cong. Ryan said, we will support abortion exceptions for rape, incest & life of the mother
Response: You supported Mississippi’s personhood amendment, which would have banned all abortion and some forms of contraception and you told ABC you would hope to appoint Supreme Court justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade. Of course, this was after you said you were pro-choice back in 1994 and 2002. Meanwhile, you’ve said you would defund Planned Parenthood, which millions of women rely on for preventative care. Women simply cannot trust you on this issue.
Those are a few of my retorts, please post yours in the comment section.