From Bittersweet Farm in Stratham, N.H., Thursday, Mitt Romney made his presidential candidacy official. "We the people on this farm and citizens across this country are the people who are just getting started," Romney said, according to ABC News. On the Tuesday prior, Romney appeared in a pre-taped interview on NBC's "Today" where he said Barack Obama was "one of the most ineffective presidents" he had ever seen, reports Politico.
"I believe I can get our economy going again, but it's up to the American people," he said. "I'll tell them what I believe and if that works, great."
According to Gallup, Zogby and Reuters, Romney consistently ranks as a top-tier contender to face Obama in 2012. Despite his popularity and impressive fundraising skills, however, Romney still faces several challenges.
Where ethanol subsidies were supposed to promote energy independence, escalating gas prices demonstrate the opposite occurred, according to the Associated Press. The program's environmental damages caused even Al Gore to admit it's a bad idea, reports Reuters. Against bipartisan efforts to pull the ethanol program, Romney continues to back the program. While his support of ethanol may impress Iowa voters who profit most from corn subsidies, according to CNN, Romney must explain to the rest of the country why they should keep paying for a program they oppose.
The biggest challenge for Romney will be to square the failure of Romneycare. As governor of Massachusetts, Romney sold his health care plan as a way to cut emergency room use while increasing access to health care. According to Dr. Peter Smulowitz, a physician at Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, "that was clearly not what happened," according to Investor's Business Daily.
By evidence of a 2011 survey conducted by the American College of Emergency Physicians, as reported by Byron York of the Boston Globe, three-quarters of Massachusetts emergency room physicians said ER use has risen . According to Dr. David John, chief of emergency care at Caritas Carney Hospital in Boston, because the law ''didn't create an infrastructure,'' doctor's offices are "full to capacity," with some patients waiting as many as 48 days to see a physician.
Despite its failure, the former Massachusetts governor insists Romneycare has succeeded and was the "right approach" for the people who elected him. His refusal to admit the failure of his program and recognize public disdain for government intervention in healthcare will prove awkward as Romney tries to convince Americans to elect him to the presidency. His flip-flop on another health issue, abortion, will also prove to be an exigent challenge for the GOP hopeful.
During his 2002 campaign for governor in Massachusetts, Mitt said he'd "preserve and protect" a woman's right to choose. As a 2008 Republican presidential candidate, not only did Romney switch camps, he said he supported the overturn of Roe v. Wade and the establishment of a constitutional amendment to ban abortion nationwide. While the majority of Americans consider themselves pro-life, according to Rasmussen, Romney must square with both sides his willingness to abandon what he believes if he thinks it works greater in garnering votes.
Considering Romney's self-inflicted political wounds, perhaps Bittersweet was an appropriate place to launch his campaign.
- ethanol subsidies
- Mitt Romney
- Barack Obama
- Byron York
- governor of Massachusetts
- the Boston Globe