In the moments immediately following the second presidential debate between incumbent President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney questions came up in the media room regarding the Republican tax plan. MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell asked Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) to name the tax deductions he would eliminate to balance the Romney campaign’s $5 trillion budget deficit. When put on the spot the young senator could not name a single deduction.
It is not the end of the world that someone cannot name precisely what line item they would strike from their upcoming budget. Mr. Romney’s first fiscal year is 2014 – just as President Obama’s first budget year was 2010. Obviously a lot can change between then and now. However, with just three weeks to go until the election it is important that the Romney campaign be able to actually name specific policy proposals.
When Senator John McCain and then-Senator Barack Obama were locked in debate in 2008 the two men were at least able to name what they would do and where they would find fixes. The Obama campaign, time and again, used the term “line by line” to describe how they would address the budget. They would go through every single program and cut the fat. When pressed to provide details the two campaigns provided them.
Mr. Romney’s tax plan may in fact be the cure-all panacea that he claims, but he needs to show details so the American people can judge exactly what kind of medication they will ingest over the next four years. President Obama has a plan and, more importantly, he has a record of governance. Mitt Romney, once again, was revealed to have nothing more that token buzz words and talking points.
President Obama asserted time and again that his opponent’s numbers did not add up. Mr. Romney has claimed that the numbers work. Prove it.