Obama and Romney present: Their closing arguments

posted at 12:01 pm on November 2, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

There comes a moment in every campaign when the time for thinking up new memes and lines of attack is over (leastaways, one would hope — I’d hardly put anything past the Obama campaign at this point) and to finally put into succinct words, what’s this all been about? Overarchingly, why should you vote for me over the other guy? While they’ll both continue to campaign in swing states over the weekend and through Monday, they’ll be locking up their various theses and supporting arguments and going for a strong, loud n’ proud finish — and they both laid out their visions in dueling op-eds today, via CNN.

Barack Obama hit on many of the major themes (I think we’re supposed to interpret them as ‘achievements’ or something) he’s touted this long while: “Saving” us from an economic depression (rather than keeping us meandering along in a near-recession), Osama bin Laden is dead, taking credit for decreased reliance on foreign oil that isn’t his, “fair shares” and class-warmongering, Romney wants to “take us back to the policies that got us here in the first place” (plus a Bill Clinton shout-out, whoop whoop), etcetera:

In the closing weeks of this campaign, Governor Romney has started calling himself an agent of change. And I’ll give him one thing — offering another $5 trillion tax cut weighted towards the wealthy, $2 trillion in defense spending our military didn’t ask for, and more power for big banks and insurance companies is change, all right. But it’s not the change we need. …

Change is an America where people of every age have the skills and education that good jobs require. We took on banks that had been overcharging for student loans for decades, and made college more affordable for millions. …

Change is an America where we reduce our deficit by cutting spending where we can, and asking the wealthiest Americans to go back to the income tax rates they paid when Bill Clinton was president. I’ve worked with Republicans to cut a trillion dollars of spending, and I’ll do more. I’ll work with anyone of any party to move this country forward. …

The folks at the very top don’t need another champion in Washington.

…Yes, because if anybody knows about reaching across the aisle and producing a responsible budget, it must be Barack Obama. (Also, a small but disconcerting sidebar: “We took on banks that had been overcharging for student loans for decades.” So, President Obama presumes to know what the right amount for banks to charge for student loans is? That… is scary.)

Mitt Romney, meanwhile, focused on his five major pro-growth policies, emphasized his record of bipartisanship, and reiterated that we don’t have to settle for the economic quagmire in which we’ve been living these past four years:

America is a land of opportunity. But lately, for too many Americans, opportunity has not exactly come knocking. We’ve been mired in an economic slowdown that has left millions of our fellow citizens unemployed. …

It hasn’t always been this way. It certainly doesn’t have to be this way in the future.  …

We will restore fiscal sanity to Washington by bringing an end to the federal spending and borrowing binge that in just four years has added more debt held by the public than almost all previous administrations combined. We will put America on track to a balanced budget by eliminating unnecessary programs, by sending programs back to states where they can be managed with less abuse and less cost, and by shrinking the bureaucracy of Washington. …

Nothing is ever easy in Washington, but these goals are rooted in bipartisan agreement, and I will work with members of both parties to accomplish them.  As governor of a state that was overwhelmingly Democratic, I was always ready to reach across the aisle and I can proudly point to the results. I’ve learned that when we come together to solve problems in a practical spirit, we can accomplish miracles.

Cut, print, that’s a wrap. Romney, by the way, is delivering the speech-version of his closing argument in Wisconsin this morning — I’ll post some vid later.

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Just thought of another one: Stone Krab (who apparently suffers from Stone Syphallis as well!)

Benedict Nelson on November 2, 2012 at 11:16 PM

501 will add to the list ASAP. Thanks

Bmore on November 2, 2012 at 11:18 PM

By the way, it’s over for 0 . 0 is done!

Bmore on November 2, 2012 at 11:33 PM

Don’t forgot Lucky Pierre….inthemiddle.

HumpBot Salvation on November 2, 2012 at 11:35 PM

Bmore, you can also add commenter antifederalist to your list

Schadenfreude on November 3, 2012 at 2:50 PM