Romney details 'First 100 Days,' says Obama's 'words are cheap'
June 13th, 2012
03:16 PM ET
10 years ago

Romney details 'First 100 Days,' says Obama's 'words are cheap'

Washington (CNN) - Having already aired advertisements describing what he'd do on "Day 1" in the White House, Mitt Romney explained on Wednesday what he'd do over another 99 days.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee also used his address to business chiefs to prebut President Barack Obama's economic speech in Ohio on Thursday. Romney will campaign in Ohio the same day.

- Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

- Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

"[The president] said, as you know, just a few days ago, that the private sector is doing fine," Romney said. "But the incredulity that came screaming back from the American people has caused him, I think, to re-think that. And I think you're going to see him change course when he speaks tomorrow."

Romney continued: "And where he will acknowledge that it isn't going so well and he'll be asking for four more years...My own view is that he will speak eloquently, but the words are cheap."

Shooting back, Team Obama accused Romney of making a "dishonest claim" about the president's record and "failed to offer any new ideas of his own" on improving the economy.

Lis Smith, a spokeswoman for the Obama campaign, argued Romney would push "budget-busting tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans" and let "Wall Street write its own rules–the same policies that crashed the economy and devastated the middle class in the first place."

"America can't afford Romney economics," she said in a statement.

Romney was the guest of the Business Roundtable's quarterly meeting. The group, an association of CEOs of major corporations, hosted President Obama in March.

Over 100 CEOs attended to hear Romney. Reporters were allowed into the session for the candidate's opening remarks, which lasted roughly 20 minutes. Afterwards, all members of the media were asked to leave so that Romney and the business leaders could privately interact. The Business Roundtable's meetings are typically closed to the press.

- Check out the CNN Electoral Map and Calculator and game out your own strategy for November.

In addition to pre-butting the president's speech, Romney laid out what he'd do in the first 100 days of a Romney administration. Earlier Wednesday, the campaign released a graphic on "How a Romney Presidency Would be Different."

"I will in my first 100 days take action to eliminate government programs, to send a lot of government programs back to states where I limit the rate of growth at inflation, and to cut back the number of federal employees through attrition," Romney said. "And by the way, to link the pay of government workers with the pay that exists in the private sector. And those things save about $500 billion a year by my fourth year in office, if I am lucky enough to be elected, and get us to a balanced budget within eight to 10 years."

Also on Romney's to-do list: approving the controversial Keystone pipeline, slashing non-security discretionary government spending, reducing the number of government regulations and repealing 'Obamacare.'

On that issue, Romney repeated a new line of attack against the president – a slam that's being cited as taking the president's words out of context.

"The other day, when he was asked, 'Do you understand that particular small businesses [are] having a hard time because of Obamacare?' He said he didn't know – he hadn't heard that small businesses were affected by Obamacare, negatively," Romney told the CEOs, referring to the president.

It turns out, that's not exactly what the president said.

During a Tuesday interview with a local television from Iowa, the president was asked about the impact of the nation's health reform law on small businesses.

The interviewer told the president that an Iowa company said it had to close and move jobs to Wisconsin, as a "direct result of the health care reform that you initiated, that Congress passed."

"How do you react to that?" the reporter asked.

The president responded: "That would be kind of hard to explain. Because the only folks that have been impacted in terms of the health care bill are insurance companies who are required to make sure that they're providing preventive care, or they're not dropping your coverage when you get sick. And so, this particular company probably wouldn't have been impacted by that."

Meanwhile, Romney also told the business leaders that the government often treats them as if they're adversaries – instead of friends.

"Government has to be the partner, the friend, the ally, the supporter of enterprise not the enemy," Romney said. "Too often, you find yourself facing a government that looks at you like you are the bad guys. And if you are hiring people and employing people and paying taxes you are the good guys. I want you to do well."

Also see:

Obama radio spot aims at black voters

Poll gives Obama edge in Pennsylvania

Obama campaign hits Romney's Massachusetts record in second TV ad

Filed under: 2012 • Economy • Mitt Romney • President Obama • Washington D.C.
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. paul

    Romney: "And on day 1 I promise that all rich people will get a huge tax cut. The middle class and poor can afford to pay more to support our millionaires and billionaires and I aim to make sure that happens"!!!

    June 14, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  2. don

    Mitt Romney wants to convince everyone that the U.S. is bankrupt without admitting Bush tax cuts are as much to blame for deficits than social programs and entitlements. He is well qualified to "manage a bankruptcy" which meant cutting pension entitlements in the corporate world (as he proposed for GM) or other social programs in federal gov't. setting.
    If that's what y'all want....

    June 14, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |

    I won't vote for a canadate that signed a back door pledge to a crook lobbyist!!!!!

    June 14, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  4. Jim

    Obama's words may be worthless, but what he lacks in quality he makes up in quantity.

    June 14, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  5. Hubert

    The poor are paying relatively nothing and the middle class is evaporating because the more government prints in stimulus and QE the less their savings and paychecks are actually worth. Its Keynesian economics that have proven to be the failure over the past 12 years and the longer we play political games by saying tax cuts are for the millionaires and billionaires is just not true. Its the millionaires and billionaires that control the businesses that would be getting the tax breaks, sure, but those are the actual producers in an economy. This is how America became industrialized and became developed. To take the capital returns of a company and give it to the least productive part of society, however well intentioned, will only drag the economy down as a whole. You are sacrificing the well-being of hundreds of millions in order to save a small portion of society. Capitalism isn't perfect, but its the best and most moral way of bettering the lives of the most amount of people. What we need is true capitalism, and Romney may not be that, but he's certainly closer than Obama has proven to be.

    June 14, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  6. 2020

    If Obama word is cheap, Romney word is hot air baloon, his promise of creating jobs is a sick joke, lie

    June 14, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. Core republican Values

    I think people are tired of Karl "Adolph Eichmann" Rove, and his brand of lying, cheating, and disgraceful politics. On Romney in particular, it looks CHEAP.

    June 14, 2012 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    On day one, Mittens will check with the Kochs, Rove, and Norquist, to see what they want him to do.

    June 14, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  9. Four and The Door

    Romney: "And on day 1 I promise that all rich people will get a huge tax cut. The middle class and poor can afford to pay more to support our millionaires and billionaires and I aim to make sure that happens"!!!
    Except Mitt Romney has already said every working American gets a 20% tax reduction. Where have you been?

    June 14, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  10. Wiley

    If actions speak louder than words, Obama is our first mute President.

    June 14, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  11. don

    Let's see. Do we want to let the Bush tax cuts expire, reform our entitlement programs a la Bill Clinton and thus regain U.S. solvency that way or hire a Bain Capital alumnus to "manage our bankruptcy" by reneging on commitments to our retirees, like he proposed for GM.

    June 14, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  12. v_mag

    Four and the Door and the other wingnuts around here have never answered the basic question:

    In what way is Rob-money different from Bush? If he is not different, why would any sane person vote for him?

    Romney = Bush = disaster

    June 14, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  13. Susan

    I'm from Massachusetts and won't vote for Romney. He did a terrible job as govenor and would be worse as president. Talk to any one from MASS about what it was like to live under Romney rule.

    June 14, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  14. Bob

    "Except Mitt Romney has already said every working American gets a 20% tax reduction"

    Pure fantasy. A return to the exact same policies that caused the Great Bush Recession will NOT solve the problem THEY created.

    Are you that simple, to believe otherwise?

    June 14, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  15. Marcia Greenwood, IN

    And he does not believe the insurance companies should cover any previous conditions and it is clear he does not suppport education and wants less teachers, firefighters-tell Colorado and Texas that(Texas prays against fires rather than have firefitghter), and policemen-because teachers, firefighters, and policemen have those "evil" unions After all, why should they be in the middle class-we can lower their pay to the lower class.

    June 14, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  16. Mike Texoma

    Why are the media getting us bogged down in this "he said – she said" nonsense? There is plenty to write about and plenty of research to be done in making sure the public is informed on this election! Where is that research? Where is that substantive information on the issues? What do the candidates reallty believe? What would they really do if they got elected? And is it a prerequisite that control of Congress change – and if not, why not? This isn't just about the president. It is aso about the congressional candidates and their respective parties and what they stand for. There is so much to do it is almost mind-boggeling. The coverage we are getting is haphazard and incomplete and supecilious. Come on, media, do better!

    June 14, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  17. DeceptiveCowpie

    "Government has to be the partner, the friend, the ally, the supporter of enterprise not the enemy," Romney said.

    Well, HAS been for some time as all the 'enterprises' let their manufacturing & labor requirements go overseas to the lowest bidder. No wonder most of the things you buy these days fall apart so fast. Listen to CHEAPNESS – by Frank Zappa

    June 14, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  18. Critical Thinking

    It's important to note that either candidate will need the support of Congress to initiate any of their policies. So comments like ; "And on day 1 I promise that all rich people will get a huge tax cut. The middle class and poor can afford to pay more to support our millionaires and billionaires and I aim to make sure that happens"!!! is just the same tired rherotic that Americans have heard the past two years. Real solutions will come from compromise but with policies that reward job growth and not punish it. There is a saying in Washington that is basically true; if you want more of something, then subsidize it, if you want less of something, then tax it. President Obama in 2008 knew the economy was in bda shape when he said that he wanted the job as President and would be transparent and work with both sides of the isle to reduce spending and cut the deficit in half. He made promises that he has not delivered and now the American public gets to vote again. There is a saying that I think applies to this election and this President. Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us. It's time; BO MUST GO !

    June 14, 2012 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  19. picklepants

    dems have been destroying jobs and jacking up the debt since 2007. i blame bush for not using his veto power against pelosi, reid, frank, dodd, biden, and obama, (remember he was a senator). you dems never bring up the fact that the economy was great when bush and a rep congress ran the show, you lie about it at every chance. unemployment never got near 6%, when the dems took over it reached 7.8% when bush left office in in reality is now 14%. obama is a job killer. he is attacking coal, oil, corporate america, and small business. these industries create jobs and obama is attacking them with regulations which are killing jobs. real unemployment is 14% people, we can't afford four more years of obama.

    June 14, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  20. rs

    Mr. Romney's plans as outlined are the single most radical, ultra-rightist, anti-Middle class, pro-rich action EVER taken in American history. America has never elected a President to start a plutocracy, now is not the time to start. Let's not allow the Republican/TEA Party to hand our nation over to little greedy men like Grover Norquist (whom they have all signed allegiance to). America is about US, not the .1%.

    June 14, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  21. tv22

    A couple of things jump out at me. First of all, just the other day Bill Clinton said he would extend the tax cuts for all Americans, including the wealthiest, so is Obama saying that Romney will bring us back to the fiscal policies of the Clinton admin? Secondly, if the President doesn't think that if his healthcare law has affected small businesses but only insurance companies, can someone please tell him that we small businesses have to pay for that insurance and those costs get passed along to us?

    June 14, 2012 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  22. rs

    Four and door- Really?! The economy went into the tank in 2008 BEFORE the election. Remeber McCain Palin's "vailient" suspension of their campaign to save us all? The GOP and Bush brought this on. You cannot spin it away with delusion.

    June 14, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  23. nogomel

    Romney is making statements that are ludicrious! He can't do the things he said on day 1, or 100! Those that believe him are fools!

    June 14, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  24. nogomel

    picklepants, stop watching Fox Fake News! President Obama took office in 2009! You are one of the reasons this country is in so much trouble! Using the nuclear option, congress has thwarted any effort to right the economy. When Pres. Obama gets re-elected, are your "leaders" going to continue to drive America into the abyss?

    Republicans are the enemies of Freedom!

    June 14, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  25. SCBADVR888

    Obama's words are cheap, but they end up costing us a fortune!

    June 14, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10