Press Release - Mitt Romney: "We Need a Leader Who Understands Not Just the Words of Unity, But the Practice of Building Unity"
"And this President instead has gone to the people and attacked. It's been a constant attack, either against Republicans or against people in the business world or whatever group he somehow feels is opposed to his agenda. But the right course for any leader is to work with other people. Good Democrats love America. Good Republicans love America. We need a leader who understands not just the words of unity, but the practice of building unity." — Mitt Romney
"Fox News Sunday"
December 18, 2011
Segments From Mitt Romney's Interview On "Fox News Sunday":
FOX's CHRIS WALLACE: "I saw the other day that President Obama has not met with Republican Congressional leaders in five months while he is at the same time made 34 campaign speeches. What's your basic argument running against him? What's the choice for voters?"
MITT ROMNEY: "Well, as you described in that introduction, the choice as it relates to that style, is that leaders don't do that. Leaders actually spend time meeting with people on the other side of the aisle. Understand their needs, understand their concerns, get their input and look for some way to find common ground. Not to violate their own principles or to insist that the opposition violates its principles, but instead finding places where there's common ground upon which to build. And this President instead has gone to the people and attacked. It's been a constant attack, either against Republicans or against people in the business world or whatever group he somehow feels is opposed to his agenda. But the right course for any leader is to work with other people. Good Democrats love America. Good Republicans love America. We need a leader who understands not just the words of unity, but the practice of building unity."
WALLACE: "You say that you would push, it says on your website, one of your goals, pass the house plan, Congressman Paul Ryan's plan to cut the budget. Let's look into that, cut Medicaid, health coverage for the poor, by $700 billion dollars, cut food stamps by $127 billion dollars, cut Pell grants for low income college students in half, you would cut all these programs, Governor, that people depend on, and a lot more than that."
ROMNEY: "Actually the great news about those programs is that in the Ryan plan and in the plan I put forward, I take the biggest of those, which is Medicaid, I take the Medicaid dollars, send them back to the states, without the mandates as to how they have to treat —"
WALLACE: "But you're also cutting the budget by $700 billion dollars."
ROMNEY: "Well what I'd do is I'd take the money, send it back to the states, and say we're going to grow that funding at inflation, the CPI, plus one percent. By doing that, you save an enormous amount of money. I happen to believe that states can do a better job caring for their own poor, rooting out the fraud and waste and abuse that exists within —"
WALLACE: "But you don't think if you cut $700 billion dollars in aid to the states that some people are going to get hurt?
ROMNEY: "In the same way that by cutting welfare spending dramatically, I don't think we hurt the poor. In the same way I think cutting Medicaid spending by having it go to the states run more efficiently with less fraud, I don't think will hurt the people that depend on that program for their healthcare."
WALLACE: "Well, I wonder because if you went up against Barack Obama, really one of the central issues... the President says he is going to campaign as the champion of the middle class and portray the Republican nominee, whoever he is, as pushing tax cuts for the wealthy, spending cuts for the poor and rolling back regulations that help protect people and the environment. Aren't you vulnerable to that?"
ROMNEY: "He's extraordinarily vulnerable, because we'll say 'how did that work Mr. President? Your four years in office, just how would those programs work? Did the poverty decline in this country or did it go up? How about joblessness? You came into office and said let me borrow $787 billion and I'll keep unemployment below 8 percent, which itself was an extraordinarily high number. And it hasn't been below 8 percent since.' His policies have not worked. We need regulation, for instance, as you point out, we need regulation in our society. I'm not someone who says get rid of all regulation. We just need regulation that's updated and modern and that encourages enterprise as opposed to burdening it. His great failing is he does not understand how this economy works and how his policies have made it harder for this economy to put Americans back to work. I do know how the economy works and my policies are designed to get people what they desperately want, not care for being poor. They want to stop being poor, have a good job and have a bright future."
ROMNEY: "Ann and I fell in love when we were in high school. It doesn't happen to a lot of people. She was 15 years old when I really took notice of her, and I was a senior, she was a sophomore. I gave her a ride home from a party, she had come with someone else, I kissed her at the door, and I've been following her ever since. She's a remarkable woman, and she's gone through some tough times. She had diagnosis of MS, she's had breast cancer, and my feelings and passion for Ann haven't changed in the slightest over the years, other than to become stronger."
ROMNEY: "Probably the toughest time in my life was standing there with Ann as we hugged each other and the diagnosis came. I was afraid it was Lou Gehrig's disease. As we came in to the doctor's office, the brochures on his table there were Lou Gehrig's, ALS, and Multiple Sclerosis, and he did these neurological tests, and we could see she had real balance problems and she didn't have feeling in places she should have feeling. He stepped out of the room and we stood up and hugged each other and I said to her, 'As long as it's not something fatal, I'm just fine.' Look, I'm happy in life as long as I've got my soul mate with me. And Ann is, and she fortunately has been able to recover the great majority of her health. But you know, this marriage thing is about bringing two people together in a way that nothing else compares with."
ROMNEY: "She knows how she feels about me, she feels the same way about me — I hope — that I feel about her. And she knows that if I were to be afflicted with some kind of condition at some point, that she would feel the same way about me...And she said, 'I can't cook anymore,' - this was a really difficult time. At the time the disease was diagnosed it was really tough for her. We were getting ready to look into putting an elevator in the house to get her up to the second floor. We were thinking about a wheel chair for her down the road. I mean we were talking about a dramatic change in life. She was tired all the time. She couldn't take care of the family the way she had in the past. And a lot of that was what gave meaning to her day to day activities. And I said, 'Look, I don't care what the meals are like, I like cold cereal and peanut butter sandwiches. We could do fine with that as long as we have each other.' When you think about what makes a difference to you in your life, it's people. Life is all about the people you love. We can handle disease, death, that's a different matter. Death, I don't know that I can handle death. Disease and hardship, we can handle as long as we have the people we love around us."
Mitt Romney, Press Release - Mitt Romney: "We Need a Leader Who Understands Not Just the Words of Unity, But the Practice of Building Unity" Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/298472