Obama: GOP agenda ‘better suited for the last century’
President Obama launched his “Road to Charlotte” tour in Iowa today by saying this week’s Republican convention in Florida offered “an agenda that was better suited for the last century.”
Nominee Mitt Romney “did not offer a single new idea, just retreads of the same old policies that have been sticking it to the middle class for years,” Obama told supporters in Urbandale, Iowa, near Des Moines.
Obama, who accepts re-nomination from the Democrats next week at their convention in Charlotte, N.C., said Romney’s proposed tax cuts would lead to cutbacks in such middle class programs as Medicare and education.
Making his first public comments on the Republican convention, Obama said voters are already familiar with GOP plans because they applied them during the last decade, leading to the financial meltdown of 2008.
“You’ve lived through it,” Obama told the crowd. “You can’t afford to repeat it.”
Obama repeatedly ridiculed the recent Republican convention in Tampa. He said the GOP blamed him for all the nation’s problems, exaggerated Romney’s qualifications for the presidency, and simply re-cycled “trickle down” economic ideas that benefit the rich and fail the middle class.
“It was a rerun,” Obama said. “We’d seen it before. You might as well have watched it on a black-and-white TV.”
Romney, running mate Paul Ryan, and other Republicans spoke of “hard truths” and “bold truths,” Obama said, “but nobody ever bothered to tell you what they were.”
The president also lodged a foreign policy complaint against Romney, noting that the Republican candidate did not mention the ongoing Afghanistan war in his acceptance speech Thursday night. The president promoted his own plan to withdraw U.S. troops and turn over security operations to the Afghans in 2014.
Obama made similar criticisms at another speech in Sioux Falls, Iowa, and said he would offer “a better path forward” when he accepts the Democratic nomination in Charlotte next Thursday.
Romney spokesman Ryan Williams said Obama’s pre-convention tour really reflects “a road to declining incomes, higher unemployment and more uncertainty for the middle class.”
Obama “offered no new solutions, just misleading attacks,” Williams said. “Mitt Romney has the plan to do what President Obama can’t — create 12 million new jobs, increase take-home pay, and bring relief to the struggling middle class,
In the days ahead, the “Road to Charlotte” runs through Colorado, Ohio, and Virginia before Obama arrived in North Carolina on Wednesday. The president delivers his acceptance speech Thursday night.
In Urbandale, Obama said he wanted to start this tour in Iowa because the state in many ways created his presidency. Victory in the 2008 Iowa Democratic caucuses launched Obama on his ride to the party nomination, and then on to the White House itself.
“It was you, Iowa, who kept us going when the pundits were writing us off,” Obama said. “And it will be you, Iowa, who choose the path we take from here.”