To the editor:
This election is a clear choice between two visions for America: One is trickle-down economics (tax breaks for the wealthy will allegedly work its way down to you), favored by Romney; or the economy grows by strengthening the middle class, favored by Obama.
Romney believes we can bring down the deficit and grow the economy by cutting taxes on the wealthy, increasing defense spending, and making unspecified spending cuts. He wants to cut taxes by 20 percent ($4.8 trillion over 10 years) in addition to keeping the Bush tax cuts, but gives little details on paying for it, and he wants to increase defense spending by $2 trillion even though the Defense Department hasn't asked for it nor does he explain how he would pay for it. The math just doesn't add up. With his plan we end up with either an exploding deficit or major cuts in programs that benefit the middle class like Social Security, Medicare and grants and loans to help college students; or programs to help the poor like Medicaid and food stamps.
He refuses to ask millionaires and billionaires to pay more to reign in the deficit. When asked at a Republican primary debate if he'd accept $1 in tax revenue for every $10 in spending cuts, Romney said no. The Republicans must believe that the major problem facing America is that the rich don't have enough money.
President Clinton handed off to President Bush a balanced budget and surpluses; however, Bush did not return the favor - instead handing over to President Obama deficits and the worst recession since the Great Depression with jobs hemorrhaging at 750,000 per month, major banks and businesses failing, and the stock market nose-diving.
Today, because of Obama's stewardship, 5 million private sector jobs have been created and Wall Street and health care reform has passed. He has accomplished this without the help of Republicans in Congress who have said from the beginning that their No. 1 goal was to defeat Obama. I think their No. 1 goal should be to work with the president to bring down the deficit and strengthen the economy for the middle class.
President Obama has a balanced approach by eliminating unnecessary spending, making necessary investments in education and clean energy and asking the millionaires and billionaires to pay a little more in taxes to help bring down the deficit. The American Jobs Act that would repair our crumbling roads and bridges and put millions back to work, and a CCC-style Veterans Jobs Bill that would have put returning veterans to work in our National Parks performing a backlog of $10 billion in maintenance projects were both defeated by Republicans in the Senate and the House even though paid for with budgetary offsets.
If we continue down the Romney/Ryan path, we could see the overturn of a century of social and economic progress.
Obama's balanced approach of careful fiscal management and strengthening the middle class will grow the economy and tackle the deficit.