Friday, April 6, 2012

When Will Romney Slam Obama For Trillion Dollar Deficits?

The attacks that Mitt Romney has taken at President Obama so far have been no more damaging than the light jabs that fighters sometimes throw early in a boxing match. However, there is a purpose to boxers' jabs. They are using them to explore for opportunities and set up an opponent for bigger blows later in the fight. In the case of Mitt Romney, his lame attacks on Barack Obama are due to the fact that he is a weak campaigner.

Here is a message for Romney -- explain to American voters the dangers of four more years of trillion dollar deficits that a second term Obama administration would bring. Stop being so wishy washy and use justified fear mongering. The current Romney message is not connecting with voters. Romney is never going to be able to pull off a positive message the way the Ronald Reagan could. Yes, American voters would like an upbeat "shining city on a hill message", but Romney is not a strong enough campaigner to make it work for him.

The Romney campaign should go back and review tapes of Ross Perot's campaign. It is remarkable to recall that back in June, 1992, Ross Perot led the presidential popularity polls with support from 39% of respondents (versus 31% for Bush and 25% for Clinton). While part of Perot's appeal was his populist anti-establishment message, his core platform was the need for an end to U.S deficit spending. In hindsight, it seems almost hard to believe that one of his campaign infomercials drew 10.5 million viewers for a message that was loaded with economic statistics. 

The U.S. debt crisis is far more severe in 2012 than it was in 1992. There should be a lesson for U.S politicians from the popularity gained by Ross Perot. His use of charts to explain the dangers of the growing U.S. debt made the deficit math easy to understand.  And once U.S. voters understood the problem and the fact that Perot stood to address it, he gained widespread support from both conservatives and liberals. Given the incredible missteps of Perot's campaign, including dropping out of the race and then jumping back in, it seems shocking that he still ultimately received 19% of the vote on election day.

Illustrating the dangers of an Obama administration running up the U.S debt up to $20 billion during the next four years is a powerful campaign message. It is time for Romney to start using some justified fear mongering. The American voters need to understand what is at stake in this election. So far, Mitt Romney has failed to give voters a persuasive reason to vote for him. Romney needs move beyond weak jabs along the lines of Obama being "anti-business, anti-investment and anti-jobs" and start throwing some powerful uppercuts.


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