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MASSACHUSETTS AND I KNOW MITT ROMNEY VERY WELL
posted at October 31, 2012 2:04 PM EDT
First: February 29, 2008
Last: May 17, 2013
I remember Governor Romney..mostly he was a "lame duck" governor - for the entire 4 years! There isn't any aisle to "reach across" in Massachusetts. He accomplished a few things like cutting education deeply and repeatedly. He opposed universal health coverage until he had it shoved down his throat by a citizens' referendum and he left us with a balanced budget by concealing the deficits. (When he left office I remember that he claimed the state had a 1 billion dollar surplus but when Deval Patrick took over we found out that it was in fact a 2 billion dollar deficit - 3 billion vanished overnight!) The good things that happened in MA during his tenure were largely in spite of and not because of Mitt Romney and he deserves no credit.
Romney's current rhetoric reminds me of the betrayal we felt when he became governor. He spoke often of his skill at balancing budgets and increasing efficiency. During the debates in the campaign for governor of MA, Mitt Romney pledged to balance the budget without raising taxes or cutting essential services. His opponent, state treasurer Shannon O'Brien, felt it would be irresponsible to make such a promise. This pledge put him just ahead of O'Brien and won him the election. He spent the next 4 years cutting aid to cities and towns in the commonwealth so that THEY had to cut fire, police, emergency responders, and close libraries, schools, fire stations etc. Whereas we, the voters, were led to believe it was a choice between keeping or losing our essential services, Romney had no magic formula and was simply planning to have someone else cut them. Worst of all, these cuts were made mid-cycle (sometimes more than once in a single cycle) throwing local budgets into total disarray. It was excruciating to see good people hired then fired and projects initiated then abandoned leaving local citizens to eat the costs. I felt thoroughly duped to the point of investigating a recall petition.
I cannot imagine why anyone who experienced this con artist as our governor would dream of entrusting a nation to him. The Mitt Romney I came to know as governor felt that decent health coverage, quality education, and economic opportunities were for those wealthy enough to afford them and should NOT be available to those unfortunate enough to have been born into poverty or to immigrant parents. He tended to offend rather than engender trust and friendship and he was completely out of touch with the life of an ordinary working person. Those who care about less fortunate people, those who believe healthcare should be available to all, and those who care about education cannot support this man's candidacy unless they have been as fooled as the MA citizens were in 2002.
I am not willing to be fooled twice by deceptive campaign rhetoric and impossible promises or assertions that he now cares about the middle class. In my opinion, anyone willing to trick his own constituents without any apology or admission that it was anything but a clever ruse is not deserving of national leadership.