Romney pledges 'big change' but offers few specifics
October 26th, 2012
03:10 PM ET
10 years ago

Romney pledges 'big change' but offers few specifics

Ames, Iowa (CNN) – Mitt Romney renewed his bid for independent voters Friday, pledging in a formal speech to unite a fractious Washington and deliver "big change" to reset the country's course.

"This election is a choice," Romney told more than a thousand voters on a windy Iowa afternoon, saying Americans faced "a choice between the status quo - going forward with the same policies of the last four years - or instead, choosing real change, change that offers promise, promise that the future will be better than the past."

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The speech, billed by aides as a major address on the economy, was largely a repeat of remarks Romney had given on the stump at rallies across Ohio a day earlier. The GOP presidential nominee did not outline new policy positions, instead using lofty rhetoric to make his final pitch to undecided voters.

Reading remarks from a teleprompter – an aid the campaign uses only during formal speeches – Romney criticized the president for focusing on "the small and the petty" in his campaign and failing to capitalize on America's great potential during his term in office.

"President Obama frequently reminds us that he inherited a troubled economy," Romney said. "But a troubled economy is not all that he inherited. He also inherited the greatest nation in the history of the earth."

In response to a slightly better-than-expected third quarter economic numbers released Friday, Romney said the nation's rate of growth was still "discouraging" and fell far short of what Obama had promised four years ago.

And the Republican nominee continued to moderate his appeal to voters in a key swing state in the final days of the election, focusing particularly on the theme of bipartisanship and saying he would make good on Obama's promise in 2008 to tame partisan rancor in the nation's capital.

"The President's campaign falls far short of the magnitude of these times. And the presidency of the last four years has fallen far short of the promises of the last campaign," Romney said. "Four years ago, America voted for a post-partisan president, but they have seen the most partisan and political of presidents, and a Washington in gridlock because of it."

Even before Romney gave his remarks, Democrats were predicting he would deliver little that was new.

In a statement released after the speech, Obama campaign spokeswoman Lis Smith sought to tie Romney to "the same failed policies that crashed our economy in the first place."

"True to form, Mitt Romney's most recent 'major policy speech' included dishonest attacks and empty promises of change, but no new policy," Smith said. "That's because all Mitt Romney has is a one-point economic plan that he's been running on for two years: the very wealthy get to play by a very different set of rules than everyone else."

Filed under: 2012 • Economy • Iowa • Mitt Romney
soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Curt

    Is anyone really surprised that Mitt did not give any specifics? And he has the nerve to blame Obama for how Washington works. Does he forget that the Republican leader in the senate said his only goal was to make sure Obama was a one term president. Or how about the do nothing republican congress. The said part is so many believe him. Surely a great businessman like him knows the whole world economy is in trouble and theres nothing he can do that will suddenly make everything perfect in the U.S.

    October 26, 2012 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  2. panictime

    I like coming on here to watch the dumbing down of America in real time. In other news according to happy Joe Biden on the trail today Romney/Ryan are looking to give the rich a 500 trillion dollar tax cut! Bahhaahahaha, pretty sure ole Joe is losing it. Keep pushing the DNC talking points CNN. People that read news from all angles know the truth and your CNN Zombies are dwildling.

    October 26, 2012 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  3. Mike

    The bug change is Mitt plans to turn the US into china. No minimum wage, no environmental regulations, no labor regulations, companies and banks free to screw us all over with no recourse. The only safety net will be around the slave wage company housing to keep the workers from jumping.

    October 26, 2012 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  4. Greg

    I love how he gave his speech form a business that received $700,000 in stimulus contracts. I guess he supports the stimulus now.

    October 26, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |

    Obama's "Nope and blame" hasn't worked for the past 4 years. He has nothing new.

    October 26, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  6. New Citizen

    Romney is saying he has got this big change, because he believes the electorate is foolish. That he can lie and lie and flip-flop and people will still buy it. I became a citizen of the US on March 29, 2012 so I can vote. I have been following the election for almost a year and I realize that Obama is the better person to run this country. I can never never trust Romney. How can you be changing your mind so quickly, like a piece of paper. It is scary and we still live in a dangerous world.

    October 26, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  7. panictime

    Intelligent people have learned from sources who were on the ground in Benghazi that an urgent request from the CIA annex for military back-up during the attack on the U.S. consulate and subsequent attack several hours later on the annex itself was denied by the CIA chain of command - who also told the CIA operators twice to "stand down" rather than help the ambassador's team when shots were heard at approximately 9:40 p.m. in Benghazi on Sept. 11.

    October 26, 2012 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  8. Pander Bear

    The man has no plan whatsoever, except to completely eliminate capital gains taxes, thereby bringing his own personal tax burden down to exactly ZERO. How can anyone take him seriously?

    October 26, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  9. Gurgyl

    Very pathetic idiot is this Bain-capital thug. Willard is not even fit to be a cook on WH. Period.

    October 26, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  10. Sniffit

    "Romney has a plan that I like."

    If you can recite the specifics and details thereof, we'll believe that he has one. If not, you're just another paid troll.

    October 26, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  11. rs

    As the election draws near, it seems very apparent that Mr. Romney in fact has no plan. His "big change" is simply to continued the failed policies of George W. Bush- our last businessman President.

    October 26, 2012 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  12. California Gary

    For being billed as a "major" speech, there sure wasn't much in there. No meat, no potatoes, no veggies, heck – there wasn't even enough in there to make a decent salad. Just another helping of BS from Romney.

    October 26, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  13. dog1

    Romney's plan is simple, millions of minimum wage jobs with no benefits, no pensions and plenty of profits for him and his friends. He knows his plan for this country is just like how he dealt with the companies he bought, from his own lips on videotape, "we bought the companies, held on to them for awhile then HARVESTED them" meaning they took the workers pension funds, sold off the inventory, fired the workers and sold the companies to Chinese interests.
    Makes you wonder if ol' Mitt might have dual citizenship, like Bachman and some of the other repubs do, so they can bolt when they're done harvesting this country.

    October 26, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  14. John

    The rat has no plans, and that is why he never gives specifics. He just wants to lie his way into the presidency. Only complete IDIOTS will vote fo him.

    October 26, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  15. Dan

    Governor Romney...
    1) Tell us how you are going to pay for the 20% tax cut without adding to the deficit. $5 trillion
    2) Tell us how you are going to pay for spending 4% of GDP on the military. $2 trillion
    3) Tell us how you are going to pay for ending ObamaCare. $100 billion in first ten years, then $1 trillion in next 10 years.

    After you are done telling us how you are going to pay for everything you promised...
    1) Tell us how you are going to lower the deficit.
    2) Tell us why 75% of your advisers worked for President Bush?

    Remember, when President Bush left office we were losing more than 750K jobs per month. We were on pace to lose over 9 million jobs in 2009. Why did Romney hire so many of the same people who were advisers to an administration that handed over the keys to an economy that was losing 9 million jobs a year?

    October 26, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  16. Don

    I was in Ames today to hear Mitt's speech. Sorry Democratic Spin Machine. The "attacks" were a validation that "Obama inherited a tough economy. What he did with it is what I argue!"
    My vote is going to Mitt Romney this election cycle. He is accurate in that statement. Maybe you would have gotten my vote, but you needed to validate what you did with the economy and what you planned for a second term. I have not heard that. I will not be voting for Obama this Nov.

    October 26, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  17. ohgran

    Big announcement! Maybe not. Romney couldn't figure out just what to announce so he just stuck to the blame game. Nothing new; no plan; hot air. And what have they done with Ryan? He's attending fund raisers and neither Romney or Ryan will answer any questions. Whose pulling their strings? The same group that pulled Bush's.

    October 26, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  18. Just a thought

    Robme's only hope is there are enough idiots that believe his lies to get him over the top. I mean come; Since when is it a good idea to be so stupid to support a person that openly lies to you.??? This is a great reason for us to force people to graduate elementary school. If that happens, the GOP / Tea fools will fade into their rightful place in history...a black hole never to be seen again

    October 26, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  19. Sam

    Romney's "big change" is he is going to implement more tax cuts for wealthy and big corporation. More jobs will be outsourced to China. If you are poor, old, disabled and/or among 47%, tough luck!

    October 26, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  20. BillSD33

    Separated at birth:

    Mitt Romney and Pied Piper!

    He is blaming Obama for not reaching across the isle! You are kidding right? 250+ filibusters, can't agree on spending cuts, won't pass any legislation that might help the country but will try to pass limits on abortion 35 times.

    October 26, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  21. Where's The Change?

    Romney gave an economic speech and offered zero details. If Romney gave any kind of specifics on anything, now that would be a "big change."

    How can Romney offer "big change" anyway, when his group of advisors is loaded with the Bush has been advisors who took this country into the toilet. That's not change, that's the blind leading the blind, deaf, dumb, and stupid.

    If he wanted to write a new campaign slogan, instead of stealing Obama's old one, it should be something along the lines of "Obama bad, me good." He looks and sounds like a neanderthal. A campaign so stupid, even a caveman can run it.

    After he loses, I hope we don't have to watch him and his family take over Faux Snooze and reality TV like silly Sarah Palin and her dysfunctional family of underachievers. Just go away.

    October 26, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  22. Ethics Board

    'Romney said. "But a troubled economy is not all that he inherited. He also inherited the greatest nation in the history of the earth."'

    The Last Will and Testament of the Earth,

    ".... And to my deepest friend, Barack Obama, for being there for me, I leave you my greatest posession of all.. the United States of America...."

    Wait what?!

    October 26, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  23. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Uh, Folks,
    Romney thinks you can handle your own life But you don't think so. It shows in your posts. So what now coach. Punt? Sorry those Shovel Ready Jobs didn't materialize but you can still book your own life. Don't be so scared. You just have to get up off your ** and go to it.

    October 26, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  24. Veteran Taxpayer

    Since "Obama's plan" is just a rehash of the same failed policies that caused increased poverty for the last four years, any change is for the better.
    Basically, Obama wishes to crash the US economy by debt (as evidenced by his spending 6 trillion dollars in four years), Since he is an anti-colonial Marxist. He hopes to equalize America with the third world; their standard of living will not go up, but we will meet them as we decrease our standard. Obama has proved over the last four years that he is determined to bring our economy down from the inside. Only a fool would fall for Obama's repeat rhetoric and failed policies that caused the slowest economic recovery in US history. His Stimulus caused far more damage to our economy than Clinton signing the deregulation of the financial markets (when he signed Gramm Leech Bailey into law.)
    Obama's monumental economic failure does not deserve a second chance.

    October 26, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  25. Mets Fan

    Folks I am amazed. Does anyone do their homework and collect data from all sources? The Romney plan was released at the biginning of this year. Obama's plan was released this week and it is his convention speech. Come on we are smarter than this. I look at performance and I cannot imagine voting for Obama again. He has not only failed but he has failed miserably. more unemployed, more on food stamps/welfare, more women affected than the last 4 presidents combined and more debt than the last 6 presidents. I am voting for Romney.

    October 26, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
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