To: Interested Parties
From: Brad Woodhouse, Democratic National Committee
Date: May 4, 2012
Re: “If Mitt Romney's an economic heavyweight, we're in trouble.” Senator Santorum, We Couldn’t Agree More
Mitt Romney will meet with Senator Rick Santorum today in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania before a campaign stop at a manufacturing company where he will attempt to present himself as some kind of economic wunderkind. However, Senator Santorum knows better than most that Mitt Romney’s brand of economics would be a disaster for our country and our economy.
Santorum Decimates Romney’s Jobs and Economic Record as Governor of Massachusetts
It was only weeks ago that Senator Santorum hammered Romney for his failed record as Massachusetts Governor:
Santorum: “If Mitt Romney's An Economic Heavyweight, We're In Trouble, Because He Was 47th Out Of 50 In Job Creation In The State Of Massachusetts When He Was Governor.” Santorum: “If Mitt Romney's an economic heavyweight, we're in trouble, because he was 47th out of 50 in job creation in the state of Massachusetts when he was governor. He may have had some success at making money for himself and his partners at Bain Capital, and I give him a lot of credit for doing so, but that's a very different thing than going out and creating an atmosphere for people to create - that create jobs.” [This Week, ABC, 3/18/12]
Santorum: Romney “Didn’t Do Anything In Massachusetts To Create An Environment For Jobs.” “The former Pennsylvania senator said Romney was looking after ‘his friends on Wall Street’ by supporting the 2008 bank bailout, then moved on to Romney’s job creation record as governor of Massachusetts. ‘It wasn’t the worst. It was third from the worst. Forty-seven out of 50,’ Santorum said. ‘You hear him talk about ‘oh I created jobs in the private sector’ but he didn’t do anything in Massachusetts to create an environment for jobs. Why? Because he exploded the size and scale of government in Massachusetts. Something exactly the opposite of what this country needs right now.’” [National Journal, 3/19/12]
Good points. We couldn’t agree more, Senator. How anyone could make the case that they are the best to lead on jobs with a record that lousy – 47th out of all 50 states – is baffling. It was only weeks ago that Senator Santorum hammered Romney for this very point. As Senator Santorum alluded to, for a man who touts his ability to create jobs as one of his only strengths, Romney’s resume for job creation as evidenced by his record in Massachusetts, is abysmal to say the least.
But it’s not just that Massachusetts was 47th in the country in job creation under Romney’s tenure that undercuts the central theme of his candidacy. No, Romney failed in nearly all areas related to the economy and jobs: under Romney, Massachusetts lost manufacturing jobs at a rate twice the national average, wages fell and income declined. And there's nothing in Romney's policies - from the $5 trillion in tax cuts weighted towards the wealthy to deep cuts in investments in the middle-class to a tax plan that creates incentives for companies to shift jobs and profits overseas - that suggests he would do any better as President.
Like Us, Senator Santorum Doesn’t Think America is Looking for a Corporate Raider to be President
Like us, Senator Santorum and his campaign have also demonstrated that Mitt Romney’s number one talking point about why he should be president – 25 years of business experience – collapses under closer inspection. Senator Santorum questioned whether someone who had spent much of his private sector career "on Wall Street" is who Americans are looking for as president.
Santorum On Romney’s Career In Private Equity “On Wall Street”: “I'm Not Too Sure That Necessarily Commends You Well To Be President Of The United States.” “On Tuesday, Santorum blasted Romney’s private-sector record at Bain Capital. ‘Gov. Romney has a career as an investment banker and someone who's a private equity guy on Wall Street. I'm not too sure that necessarily commends you well to be president of the United States,’ Santorum said in an interview on the nationally syndicated show ‘Kilmeade & Friends.’” [First Read, NBC, 3/13/12; Kilmeade & Friends, 3/13/12]
Of course, the real issue about Mitt Romney’s time in the private sector is that what it actually was and what Mitt Romney says it was to get elected president are two entirely different things. Mitt Romney has tried to lead people to believe that he was trying to create jobs in the private sector when in fact what he was doing was trying to create wealth for himself, his partners and investors. Romney did so by loading companies with debt, laying off employees, cutting their pensions and benefits while paying himself and his firm handsome fees and even occasionally profiting from the company’s bankruptcy. Plundering companies for profit is not exactly a resume builder for someone running for president, as Senator Santorum and his campaign alluded to.
And Like Most Americans, Senator Santorum Doesn’t Think Much of that Low Tax Rate Mitt Pays
One of the things of course that we’ve noted is that Mitt Romney not only pays a lower effective tax rate on his income than many middle class Americans, but that he opposes the Buffett Rule which would require people like him to pay their fair share. And Senator Santorum, like most Americans, doesn’t think much of how Mitt Romney gets to pay such a low tax rate compared to many other Americans:
Santorum On Romney: “My Tax Rate Was About 27, 28 Percent. Gov. Romney's Was Half That Amount.” “Indirect digs at Romney's ‘kind of life’ -- and his cash-laden donors --were sprinkled throughout Santorum's two-stop visit to Oklahoma. ‘Guess what, rich people can move their money other places,’ he said in Tulsa, using presumptive frontrunner Gov. Mitt Romney as an example to illustrate a point of tax policy. ‘As we saw from someone who went out as I did and worked. My tax rate was about 27, 28 percent. Gov. Romney's was half that amount.’” [First Read, NBC News, 3/5/12]
And Santorum Has Called on Romney to Release his Tax Returns
Mitt Romney gave John McCain 23 years of tax returns when he wanted to be his running mate. Mitt’s dad released 12 years of returns when he ran for president. President Obama has released a decade’s worth and Senator Santorum even released four years’ worth of returns himself. To date, Mitt Romney has only released one year of his tax returns and claims he’ll release this year’s returns when they are ready. Which all raises the question: what does Mitt Romney have to hide? When he was still campaigning for president, Rick Santorum had the same question:
Santorum Called On Romney To Release His Tax Returns. “Add Rick Santorum to the list of Republicans calling for Mitt Romney to release his tax returns. ‘I don't know why he hasn't released his tax returns. I think he should,’ Santorum said in an interview Monday on the Laura Ingraham radio show. The former Pennsylvania senator added that it was important especially for ‘someone with [an] enormity of wealth,’ like Romney. ‘Well, let's see how he manages his own economy,’ Santorum said.” [The Hill, 1/16/12]
So, to summarize: Rick Santorum thinks based on Mitt Romney’s failed jobs and economic record in Massachusetts that America would be in trouble with him at the helm, that his time as a corporate raider is definitely NOT what Americans are looking for in a president, that it’s unfair that Mitt Romney pays a lower tax rate than many middle class Americans and that Mitt Romney should release his tax returns. Senator, we couldn’t agree more. All this ought to make for an interesting meeting.