Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney points to the crowd after his speech at the final session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida August 30, 2012.
Credits: REUTERS/Eric Thayer
Mitt Romney is now the official Republican presidential nominee. With the Republican National Convention done, he can really get to work campaigning, reminding Americans of what four years of "hope and change" has really meant.
A deficit so huge that it could spark a second recession. The job market moving at, well, way less than full speed. An oil pipeline between the US and its strongest trading partner - Canada - scuttled to appease the environmentalists. And a president with the audacity to tell small business owners, "You didn't build that." Romney has his work cut out for him.
But it's no guarantee. A post-convention bump in the polls isn't what Romney needs to seal the deal. He needs to remind voters that he will be as far from Obamanomics as a presidential candidate can get. That's what his country's looking for - and that's what our country needs, too.
First, the $16 trillion debt. The only way America can come close to nipping that in the bud is by taking a hard look at its spending - and making some serious fundamental changes. That's what Romney's running mate, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, has been trying to do practically since he was first named chair of the House budget committee in 2010 - by calling for serious reform to medicare, one of multiple sacred entitlement cows.
And of course Barack Obama's people are accusing him of throwing grandma under the bus. Nonsense! He's trying to save medicare for future grandmas.
How about jobs? Some economists say the job market in America would be worse off if not for Obama's stimulus package.
Of course, most of the jobs it saved were so-called "green jobs" - dependent on tax credit after incentive after loan and so on - and jobs in the public sector.
But the private sector? Sure, the recent numbers show gains, but how many of the private-sector jobs gained are enough to feed a family of four on their own? They're not enough to boost economic confidence - and with economic confidence at a cataclysmic low, no incumbent president can say things have substantially improved on his watch. But I guess you get what you voted for - Obama's business experience was zero before he entered politics.
How about energy? Obama ran on a promise of putting America on the track to independence from Saudi oil. Unfortunately, his way to do that was to throw money at wind turbines, solar panels, electric cars, you name it. And you don't see many of those companies surviving more than a year or two.
Meanwhile, a pipeline from Canada to the United States was waiting in the wings - and Obama said no. This despite pleas from American unions, typically a reliable Democratic vote. No, Obama decided to trade them in for the environmentalist vote. Which base is more worth impressing if the goal is to improve the economy? These unions aren't asking for more cheques - they're asking for actual jobs and a supply of energy from a reliable, ethical partner.
All of these make Romney a better choice for America and for Canada. He's a manager, through and through. That's the message he needs to emphasize as he continues on the campaign trail. No more of the all-talk, no-action gibberish we've come to associate with Obama. America is looking for action, and Mitt Romney can deliver.