Obama needs independents

There is an ancient curse that warns: Be careful – you may get what you want. Let us consider then what a Mitt Romney presidency would be like.

He has refused to get specific, and flips his positions regularly, so the best clue to his views may be in the remarks in which he indicated no interest in the 47 percent of us who pay no income tax, along with his fondness for the positions of Paul Ryan when he chose him for his vice president.

As president, we should expect him to want to cut deeply into social programs such as “Obamacare,” Medicare, Medicaid and the safety net that has been built over 70 years. These being of vital interest to Democrats in Congress, and being popular with the public, the Senate should be expected to require 60 votes for passage, a procedure honed to perfection over the past four years by Republicans. We should expect that there would be very little reduction in expenditures, perhaps less than if Obama were re-elected, as he would have more influence with Democrats than Romney.

On increasing revenue, Romney has sworn not to raise tax rates, particularly on those like himself. Instead, he claims, again without details, that he will raise revenues by putting millions of the unemployed back to work. The only way that has worked was by federal stimulus, and he has shown zero interest in that.

Bottom line: There would be gridlock on reductions in spending and no increase in revenue, with the result of four more years of annual trillion-dollar deficits.

The only bright spot of a Romney victory would be that Obama would allow the Bush tax cuts to expire, while urging Congress to reinstate those for the middle class in 2013, knowing Romney as president would perpetuate them.

To avoid this ugly scenario, we need independent voters to vote for Obama.

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Rick McKee Editorial Cartoon