With the first Presidential Debate just wrapping up, I must say I was very surprised to see how well Mitt Romney did in the debate. Not saying Obama did a terrible job but his debating skills certainly were challenged by Romney.
The entire Presidential campaign I have waited to see any sign of a backbone from Mitt Romney and tonight was the first time that I seen one from Romney. Romney came out swinging at the President and was clearly the more prepared out of the two. The debate covered topics such as taxes, the economy, education, the federal debt, and healthcare. Here is what I took from the debate:
1. Taxes: Obama was quick to accuse Romney that his tax plan would benefit only rich Americans, in which Romney responded with a fiery rebuttal. Romney pointed out that his proposed tax plan would cut taxes for all Americans, 20% cut across the board, not only for rich Americans but for all Americans. The two seemed to agree upon cutting the corporate tax rate, Romney proposes a reduction of 10% and Obama proposes a 7% reduction. When it came to taxes in the debate I will give Romney the win, not because his tax plan is a better tax plan but because Obama was completely unprepared to debate the issue of taxes.
2. The Economy: The President was of course on the defensive when the issue of the economy was brought up and rightfully so. Romney criticized the unemployment rate and the continued failure of the economy to create jobs. Obama countered by stating that the American auto industry is booming because of his auto bailout and that manufacturing is coming back to the United States (which is absolutely true). Still the numbers are not there, unemployment is still above 8% and the economy is by no means recovering at the rate that any of us would like to see it. When it comes to the topic of the economy in the debate I will not give either candidate a win because Romney’s economic plan is still vague and the Obama economic plan seems to be working but at a very slow pace.
3. Education: When it came to education it was clear to everyone that watched the debate, that neither candidate has a decent plan to better the education system in the country. Romney at one point had the highly intelligent comment “I love great schools,” of course you do Mitt, there isn’t a person in the country who doesn’t like great schools. Doesn’t that statement itself speak for how much Romney knows about how to improve education? Don’t get me wrong, Obama has not brought any ground breaking education reform to our schools either but does anyone expect Romney doing any better in the area of education? I give a loss to both candidates when it comes to education. Both showed incompetence when it came down to education and both seemed to lack any willingness to change the failing public school system.
4. The Federal Debt: When it comes to the Federal Debt, I will just come out and say it now, neither candidate has a stellar plan to solve the crisis. Romney plan includes cutting taxes in a time when Federal tax receipts are at historic lows and the Federal Government is in over $16 trillion in debt but somehow expects to decrease the Federal Debt at the same time. The Bush tax cuts are a very big reason why our federal debt is over $16 trillion and renewing and expanding the Bush tax cuts are not the answer to lower the debt. Romney criticizes the President for not keeping his promise to cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term. But let us be honest, did any of us believe that Obama would cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term in the midst of the greatest economic downturn since the Great Depression? The answer is “no” and it is a promise the President knew he could not keep. But when it comes to reducing the Federal Debt I believe the Obama plan has a better chance at success than the Romney plan. Tax cuts are a great thing, especially during a time of economic hardship, but $16 trillion is a lot of money and the time to start trimming away at it is now. I give President Obama the win when it comes to the debt because Romney’s plan to cut it does not add up. He may claim that he will close certain tax loop holes to make up for some of the loss but it is very unlikely that the plan will work as smooth as Romney proposes.
5. Healthcare: One of the most hotly debated topics tonight was, no surprise, healthcare. Romney immediately started out attacking Obamacare, of course. Romney must underestimate the American peoples intellectual ability to think to themselves “Didn’t Mitt create universal healthcare as Governor of Massachusetts?” The fact of the matter is that both plans are incredibly similar, the major difference being the Affordable Care Act is on a national level and not a state level. How does Governor Romney justify his implementation of universal healthcare in Massachusetts? States rights of course, this a recurring justification for the Republican Party’s agenda (another example for this excuse is gay rights). Romney also continued on with his belief that the Medicare system should be a combination of both private and government insurance. From my knowledge on this topic, it would be a disaster to the taxpayer funded Medicare system. Not to mention it will NOT keep medical costs down. Medicare on average pays doctors 40% less than private insurance does. Romney has no good explanation as to how this system would affect healthcare costs, so I will in a very simple way, costs will increase. When it comes to healthcare I will give the President the win easily over Mitt Romney.
President Obama has much to prove going into the next debate, which I foresee him doing much better in. Obama was very ill-prepared for this debate and Romney capitalized off of this. Romney showed much passion and had a good debate style, often citing facts which is crucial for a candidate to do. Romney had a great knowledge of the issues but he simply does not have good plans to address the issues that face this country. Who do you feel won the debate and why? Post your opinion below and let’s start a debate.