The mainstream media and Team President Barack Obama have worked relentlessly to attack the Gov. Mitt Romney-Rep. Paul Ryan ticket, propagating countless misconceptions to foster fear in Americans. Yet, they have underestimated our vigilance in discerning fact from fiction.
1) “Romney is a greedy billionaire.”
Romney donated all of the inheritance he received from his father to Brigham Young University, according to a Forbes article. The Wall Street Journal also confirmed (based on tax returns) that the Romney family donated four million dollars to charity in 2011. This amount comprises 29 percent of their income, compared to the Obama family’s donation of 21.8 percent of its income to charity. Additionally, Romney donates ten percent of his income annually to the Mormon Church, adding up to more than three million dollars in the past two years alone. Since 1999, the Romneys have donated over seven million dollars through their Tyler Charitable Foundation, championing causes ranging from treating Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis to promoting emotional and physical health of underprivileged children.
2) “Romney and Ryan are out of touch with the struggles average Americans face.”
Romney has stated countless times that his plan will not increase taxes for the middle class, and explicitly said he would not unburden the rich, telling Obama “they will do fine whether you’re president or I am.” Additionally, Ryan’s life story epitomizes the pursuit of the American dream. After losing his father at age 16, Ryan worked to help provide for his family. After college, he was a waiter and personal trainer while interning for a senator, and worked in construction and as a salesman before being the youngest person elected to Congress in 1998. For about 10 years, Romney served without pay as a ward bishop for his congregation, providing support to people during difficult times. He essentially shut down Bain Capital’s Headquarters to search for his business partner’s missing teenage daughter. After taking CEOs with him to New York, he established a tip-line and a command center, hired a private detective, and coordinated a flyer-distributing effort, scouring the streets until the girl was found.
3) “Romney is ignorant about equality for women and women’s rights issues.”
As governor of Massachusetts, Romney appointed a woman, Kerry Healey, as Lieutenant Governor. In 2002, before Romney was governor, women held only 30 percent of top government positions. In his first two and a half years as governor, 42 percent of Romney’s appointments to top positions were women — more than the govenor of any other state. Additionally, while Romney is a pro-life candidate, he stated in a CBS interview that he believes abortion should be an option in the case of rape, incest or to save the mother’s life.
4) “Romney doesn’t care about education.”
While he was governor, Romney’s state earned top scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. As president, Romney wants to reduce complicated regulations in order to lower tuition costs (which have increased under Obama), promote transparency and increase educational options. Romney also advocates strengthening and simplifying the college financial aid program.
5) “Romney’s experiences as a CEO in the private sector can’t help America’s economy grow.”
As CEO of Bain Capital, Romney did not accept pay, helping to revitalize companies such as Burger King, Staples and Domino’s. He was selected to turn around the 2002 Olympics, balancing the event’s budget by making pragmatic decisions that eliminated wasteful spending without compromising the event’s success. In a state with a 87 percent Democratic legislature, Romney had to consistently compromise to create effective policies, reducing a $2.1 billion deficit by closing loopholes and cutting spending.
These facts all point to the tireless work ethic, empathy, pragmatism and economic know-how of the Romney-Ryan team. We need their leadership now more than ever to restore the promise of America.
Email Andrea Aron-Schiavone at email@example.com.