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.

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"[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.

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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. Four and The Door

    "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.
    I can see why talk of lower taxes is such a shocker after 3 1/2 years of Obama spending like the American taxpayer owns the universe. Obama has no clue how to run an efficient government so he has convinced his followers that taxes are good. The higher the taxes the better. It is interesting to watch people suck the Kool-aid up. Odd and a little entertaining. I prefer believing that the federal government can actually be managed within it's means. Romney 2012.

    June 14, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  2. Mom to 3

    I disagree that President Obama's "words are cheap" as President Obama presents programs that would really help our struggling middle class, but he cannot always get those plans past a "just say NO" Republican Congress. Romney's words, on the other hand, are expensive. Expensive because they are bought and paid for by the ultra-wealthy and large corporations who want only to see their own taxes reduced even further and regulations that protect consumers and our environment done away with. There is no way I will vote for Romney. He is completely out of touch with what regular working Americans are going through and will take us in the wrong direction of continuing to cater to the 1% who do not need any help.

    June 14, 2012 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  3. enuff

    So Romney thinks he can do whatever he wants if he takes office? Does he not realize that the presidency is just one of three governmental branches? Our forefather's set up our government in such a way that a dictator cannot just take over. Any civic student has learned this. I guess he should have been in class instead of shaving other students heads. Plus, if all he has to run on grabbing one liners from Obama and yelling "fail", he isn't giving us anything solid to elect him on. Then we get to see how he panders to CEOs while his staff is insolent to small business owners...shows which side his bread is being buttered on.

    June 14, 2012 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  4. steve

    Romney clearly has no core values. There is no there there.

    June 14, 2012 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  5. rs

    Mr. Romney's claim of "words are cheap" is correct. He takes back everything he says within 48 hours! That's REAL cheap.

    June 14, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  6. DeAnne

    All I hear from Romney is cut-cut-cut .... but never do I hear WHAT he would cut, this man has NO PLAN ... all the Republicans want is another Bush styled puppet with "digits" to sign in their legislation ... unlike Ann Romney, I do not have "stocks" to sell when I need money, I have to wait for my next month's pension check .... and I'm really afraid if Romney gets into office, I will no longer have that which I earned for 25 years in the factory (until I got hurt) ... even tho the "safety net" is there for me (for now, anyways).

    June 14, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  7. SCC

    No matter how you disagree with a man's or woman's you do not disrespect the man that holds the
    position in the world. I will not play the race card – but

    June 14, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  8. W.G.

    He may think Obamas words are cheap but Romney´s words are DANGEROUS for our country .
    The republicans have ruined our country , with Bush 8 years in office . Are you really that stupid to think
    just because Bush is gone that all of a sudden everything he ruined is fixed ? Our congress can´t get
    anything done because the party of "NO" refuses to work . The latest republican to get voted in said his
    idea of comprimise is for democrats to do everything the republican way . The GOP is out of touch and
    out of step . It´s time to vote the GOP , OUT !

    June 14, 2012 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  9. marcr7

    Obama speaks "cheap words" according to Mitt? Um ... just which cheap words would that be? Does Mitt mean the words about the GOP under Bush blowing away the $800 billion surplus that Clinton and the Democrats left them in 2000, then creating a $3 trillion deficit and an economic meltdown of our whole system? Cheap words? Really?

    June 14, 2012 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  10. DB is AR

    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 |

    Yeah Mittens says that but he also says we need to stop the (False completely False) Obama spending spree. What is it? Does he want to pay the deficit down or not? It won't matter anyway because as soonn as he meets the National Media and stops spending ALL of the time on Fox & Friends he will actually have to explain his true position instead of standing on both sides of every issue.

    June 14, 2012 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  11. mdesan

    Romney's statements to "send a lot of government programs back to the States", from healthcare, to medicare, just tells me he would wash his hands of it all. That way, when folks lose their homes due to high costs or reduced services, he can say "Well, it's not my fault. Go ask your governors why this happened". He has no plan, period. Empty suit politics.

    June 14, 2012 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  12. Ronda in Houston,TX

    I said it once and I'll say it again...Romney is an empty suit. This is exactly what the Republicans want. They need someone that can not think on their own as Bush was. Carl Rove was Bush's brain. Who will be Romney's brain? This man is dangerous.

    June 14, 2012 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  13. Four and The Door

    Romney's statements to "send a lot of government programs back to the States", from healthcare, to medicare, just tells me he would wash his hands of it all.
    Or maybe he just pays attention to what James Madison put forth about the division of state and federal authority in the founding of America.

    June 14, 2012 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  14. Khaleeshi

    Romney is so out of touch with the average American – he just doesn't seem to understand how phoney he really is. He's still just following President Obama around and putting down everything he does or says. Please stop and tell everyone what YOUR plans are. How will you pay for the millionairs/billionairs tax cuts? Please tell us this, even though I think we already know.

    June 14, 2012 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  15. Critical Thinker

    It will be interesting to view presidential debates between Romney and Obama. Then we can determine for ourselves whose words and plans for current and future issues are "cheap" and "shallow". Of course, both sides will attempt to spin their candidates' words. I will base my assessment on what the contenders say and what knowledge of issues they possess. The more debates the better. Weak candidates always refuse or minimize the number and breadth/depth of debates.

    June 14, 2012 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  16. maximusvad

    "I'm not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there." —Mitt Romney (January 2012)
    Now this man has the answers ! O.o

    June 14, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  17. v_mag

    You can't get back to the good old days of Clinton by returning through the bad old days of Bush.

    June 14, 2012 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  18. julie got that twisted.........Romney has NO answers or PLANS......will U be standing by ur man when Mr. PreZ wipes the floor with willard in the debates ......the man is a flip flopping arrogant fake-- chump

    Obama 2012 the only way forward

    June 14, 2012 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  19. Cheryl Jefferies

    He's right, you know. And, he's not right: Obama's words are very costly to each of us. And, here's some proof of that: By the end of today, Obama will have attended not 7 fund-raisers already this week.


    Yep, 9 fund raisers. And, it's only Thursday.

    And, has hit US with the bill for lots of having something "official" hooked onto some of those trips.

    Best guess as to the cost of revving-up and taking off in Air Force One? About, $250,000/trip.

    Yep, he's right about this speech on the economy in OH today:


    Only WE'RE the ones being FRAMED!!!!!

    June 14, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  20. Madaline

    My Opinoion maybe many wont like it but here it goes..The working people in this Country (and when I say working people I'm not talking about a Unionized Worker I referring to the real working people "The Working Poor") we have been hit hard real hard, Food Prices, Taxes, Gas & Oil prices.forget about it!! This battle that keeps raging on between the Middle (and lets clarify the Middle & Upper Middle are the Unionized Workers in this Country they are the 45,000 per year and over bunch) If you make over 45,000 per year You are VERY Lucky and News Flash you are The Middle Class & anyone slightly over in income is the Upper Middle!! And we the Working poor are tired of this constant battle betwen the Middle & the wealthy you peopel Need to stop being so jealous!!!! Not everyone can be a Millionaire or Billionaire!!!! We the working poor are getting hammered in this nonsense and another news Flash if we the working poor (the people who want to work but can only get lower paying jobs but God Bless us we keep working because we have Pride and we are trying to set a good example for our families and children.... well if we "the working poor Fall then news flash for the Unionized worker anothe rmassive chunk of you will get laid off!!!! If we fall you Fall!!!! Obama has done NOTHING for teh working poor..Nothing... and anyone who says he's helped the working poor is a liar! If I have to vote for a Republican to get the Spoiled Unionized worker in this Country to realize how LUCKY they are and that they should shut up then I Will!! We have a name and we are the Working poor and we will send a message at the Polls.... to the spoiled that forgot about us when they make the deals for them selves....For the Obama camp who will only help the Unions or the people on the system..Well it's time for the Working Poor to send a message of our own in 2012.. We work because we dont want to collect on the system we are proud and you forgot us and now we are coming to the polls.....I wont be voting for Obama/Biden .. Sorry just my Opinion thats the way I feel ... Good Luck to everyone and wish you all well...

    June 14, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  21. hood1707

    Dear Mr. Romney, I get that you don't like the President. You have been saying that since he got elected. Now tell us what you plan on doing. Some details would be nice.
    Signed, A registered Voter

    June 14, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  22. A not-so-stupid former republican

    Perhaps President Obama's words are cheap; however, Romney's words are WORTHLESS because he takes them back within 24 hours. Mr. Flip Flopper cannot stop flip-flopping!

    June 14, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  23. Smokey

    If tax cuts for the wealthy are supposed to create jobs why did we lose so many jobs all the while the tax cuts were in place!!

    June 14, 2012 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  24. bilk7

    Why does Romney continue to lie about the President's record? If he truely believes Obama did something wrong, come out with facts to back it up and tell the American people what you would do differently. Don't just keep spouting lies!

    June 14, 2012 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. Yuri

    Romney is a rabid dissembler and a prevaricator of the lowest order.

    June 14, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
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