2012-11-03 / Editorials & Letters

The Case for a New President: His record

Mercifully, the 2012 Presidential Campaign should be over next week. President Obama announced his bid for reelection nearly 19 months ago. Since then he has spent more time campaigning, particularly fundraising, than anything else for the office he already holds. He seems far more interested in keeping the job, than doing it.

Ohio voters are particularly important in this election. Our votes will have a major impact on the ultimate outcome. Both parties believe they need Ohio to win.

Your choice should be much easier than four years ago. Obama’s message of “hope and change” resonated far beyond just Democrats in 2008, sweeping him to victory. Unfortunately, his idea of “hope and change” turned out to be more oriented to moving toward European socialism than restarting the temporarily stalled American growth machine.

This time he can’t hide behind his feel-good “hope and change” slogan. He has a record and it’s miserable. If the key question is whether we’re better off now than four years ago, he would lose in a huge landslide. It is hard to believe, but the recession officially ended more than two years ago – in the summer of 2009. That’s when growth turned positive, but growth has since been anemic compared to past recessions. For The Beacon, this year – 2012 – has been the worst yet. Many of our small business advertisers would agree. Dozens are no longer in business.

The millions of Americans that have given up trying to find work would also agree. The slowly declining reported unemployment rate is more a function of people giving up than new jobs being created. The number of former workers collecting disability benefits continues to set new records. More than 1.3 million workers have started collecting disability benefits since Obama’s first full month in office. That’s about 975 more per day. Nearly 47 million Americans – 14 percent of the population – are on food stamps. That too is a new record!

Obama has one answer for everything – MORE GOVERNMENT. Much of his wasted stimulus went toward preserving government jobs at the state and local level. Billions went down the drain of his “green” energy vision. Our grandchildren will be paying for that $800 billion stimulus boondoogle.

Without a Republican vote, he took over nearly one-sixth of the economy with ObamaCare. Thankfully he came up a few votes short of taking over energy use via cap and tax. But that legislative defeat didn’t deter him. As he promised off-record to a San Francisco audience in 2008, his regulators are bankrupting the coal industry. Hundreds of coal-fired power plants are closing by 2015, costing thousands of jobs, wasting still productive assets, reducing electricity reliability and increasing our electric bills. Most of us don’t think much about coal, but it’s particularly important in Ohio. Billions have been invested in these plants and they produce more than 50 percent of Ohio’s electricity. Premature closures cost jobs and the investments that rate-payers (us) have made in them.

He’s not stopping at coal. Fossil fuels, including oil and gas, are in his sights. Gasoline costs twice as much as it did when he took office. Obama continues to rail at the oil and gas industry repeatedly attacking claimed special tax benefits which are no different than those available to companies in general. A second term would allow him to kill shale oil and gas which can give us our long sought energy security and trigger a manufacturing boom in Ohio. Shale oil and gas must be stopped because they make his “green” energy even less viable.

His “You didn’t build that” comment demonstrates his contempt for our job creators. Obama credits government – which takes wealth rather than creating it – for our success. Government may have built that road, but it took the money to do it from us. What he fails to understand is that first you must create an environment that allows wealth to be created before you can take it. It’s the old adage – Don’t kill the goose that lays the golden eggs.”

Job creators, primarily small businesses, have been battered by Obama for nearly four years. It’s been far more than name calling though there’s been plenty of that. Wall Street is still the world’s financial center and is the envy of the rest of the world. But listening to Obama, you would think it’s nothing but a corrupt group of gangsters, cheating and stealing. Once Mitt Romney emerged as the Republican challenger, Obama spent months demonizing private equity firms that invest PRIVATE funds. In the meantime, his investments of OUR taxes in his favored “green” energy projects continue to produce losses that now exceed one billion dollars.

There’s also been the regulatory assault, particularly from the EPA and the looming threat from ObamaCare. Regulatory relief bills have been passed with bipartisan support in the House, only to die in the Democratic held Senate. Obama continues to demand tax increases on his $200,000 a year millionaires, knowing that it will hurt many small businesses that pass income through to individuals.

It’s no wonder that growth is so slow. Businesses and investors fear the unknown. Obama has already told the Russians he’ll have “more flexibility” after he’s reelected. That’s helping hold down our growth. Businesses rightly fear his additional “flexibility.”

We need to get back to creating wealth. That wealth is spent on new employees, raises and improved benefits, new products and services, charity and taxes. Everyone benefits! Mitt Romney is a proven wealth creator. He can create the environment needed to restart the great American growth machine. It’s also important that we give him the support he needs in the Senate. That means Josh Mandel! Incumbent Sherrod Brown has supported Obama 95 percent of the time.

We can get it done again if we can get government out of the way!

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