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News Economy Jobs Taxes Thursday, Jan 19 2012

MEMO: Debate Prep For Republican Presidential Candidates

To: Republican Presidential Candidates And Their Esteemed Representatives From: Ty Matsdorf, Senior Advisor American Bridge 21st Century RE: Debate Prep Date: January 19, 2012 Tonight’s debate may offer you your last best chance to reach voters not only in South Carolina, but across the nation. After more than a dozen debates, a lot of ground has been covered but there is still room to distinguish yourselves from Mitt Romney and attempt to derail his coronation. Since it seems that you have struggled to focus in on a sustained line of attack that erodes Mitt Romney’s standing and qualifications for being president among the Republican primary voters while not costing you support from your conservative base, we have mapped out three central themes that will accomplish both should you choose to highlight them in tonight’s debate. Themes For The Debate:

Romney Puts Personal Profit Above Values And Beliefs: It is no secret that Governor Romney is wealthy, and that is not something to begrudge. But highlighting what that wealth encompasses is a key line of attack that could be used. Below are examples that should be broached tonight:

Romney Profits From Abortion Services: On the campaign trail (even though he was previously pro-choice,) Romney continually touts his pro-life positions. However, that hasn’t stopped him from padding his bank account with investments in Stericycle, a company that disposes of aborted fetuses. Stericycle has been targeted by many conservative groups, the same demographic that Romney has been pandering to on the trail. (Huffington Post, 1/17/12)

Romney Profits From Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac: Despite demonizing Speaker Gingrich for his work for Fannie/Freddie, and the continual disparaging of them on the campaign trail, Romney personally invested up to $500,000 in these organizations and made up to $50,000 last year alone. (Boston Globe, 9/19/11)

Romney Profits From China: On the campaign trail Romney is quick to talk tough on China, but that didn’t stop his investors from investing his money in Chinese holdings. And if Romney hides behind his “blind trust,” remind him of his quote from 1994 calling blind trusts “rouses” (Wall Street Journal, 12/17/11)

Romney Profits From Offshore Tax Shelters: This line of attack writes itself. But just in case, this just further shows that with Mitt Romney his own personal profit trumps all else. (ABC News, 1/18/12)

Romney’s Business Success Was Due To “Corporate Welfare”: Governor Romney has held up his business experience as his main qualification for being President, and has been quick to dismiss the manner in which he acted as simply “free market capitalism.” What he doesn’t mention is that some of his success has been due to huge government subsidies and tax breaks, something decried by the conservative Cato Institute as “corporate welfare.”

Steel Dynamics: Undoubtedly, Governor Romney will tout Steel Dynamics, the “steel mill in Indiana,” as one of his successes. You must tell the other side of the story: this was only a success because of more than $37 million in government subsidies. And what is even more damaging, these subsidies were paid for by raising taxes on the local residents. (LA Times, 1/12/12)

Romney Is Out Of Touch: This has been percolating for months but nowhere was it more crystalized then his flippant comments about the amount of money he made from giving speeches. Again, while no one begrudges success, Governor Romney’s complete inability to relate to the struggles of working families is absolutely astounding.

Romney/Speeches: On Tuesday, Romney offhandedly said he didn’t make very much money from giving speeches. In reality, he has made more than $360,000 dollars last year alone giving speeches. (Politico, 1/18/12)

The Wire Thursday, Jan 19 2012

Huffington Post: Mitt Romney's Bain Capital Invested In Stericycle, A Company Now Targeted By Anti-Abortion Activists

On January 17, 2012, the Huffington Post reported:

One of the highest performing companies in which the private equity firm founded by Mitt Romney invested is now a top target of the most vehement anti-abortion groups in the nation. Stericycle, a massive medical waste disposal service company, received a $75 million investment from Bain Capital in 1999 and soon became an industry leader. Today, it has more than 485,000 customers worldwide. Its clients include hospitals, blood banks, and pharmaceutical manufacturers. But it has also helped dispose of medical waste from Planned Parenthood and abortion clinics -- waste that included aborted fetuses -- and that has attracted the ire of the pro-life community and establishment Republicans.
Read the full story here.

News Economy Foreign Policy Taxes Tuesday, Jan 17 2012

The Press & Guide: MI U.S. Sentate GOP Hopefuls Blast UN, Federal Reserve, Immigrants

On January 16, 2012, The Press & Guide reported:

Five of the candidates who hope to be the Republican Party’s nominee for the U.S. Senate sought the endorsement of a coalition of Michigan Tea Party groups Saturday by attacking the Federal Reserve, the United Nations, taxes and children of illegal immigrants.

News Economy Jobs Tuesday, Jan 17 2012

Washington Post: Allen Opposes Stimulus, But Backs Company That Received Stimulus

On January 16, 2012, the Washington Post reported:

George Allen, the likely Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, recently headlined a town hall at Micron Technology, a semiconductor company with a facility in Manassas. It’s the same company that received $5 million in stimulus money. And the same company whose CEO, Steve Appleton, met with President Obama to show his support for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. But, as you may recall, Allen doesn’t support the recovery act.

News Economy Taxes Tuesday, Jan 17 2012

VIDEO: "Not Very Much"? Romney On $374,000 In Speaking Fees

Today in South Carolina, Mitt Romney explained that he pays a lower effective tax rate than many working Americans because his “income comes overwhelmingly from investments made in the past, rather than ordinary income or rather than earned annual income.” Romney also noted that he gets paid for speeches “from time to time,” but described the fees as “not very much.” However, Romney’s personal financial disclosure reveals that he raked in $374,327.62 in speaking fees between February 2010 and February 2011. That may be “not very much” to Mitt Romney, but the vast majority of voters would certainly disagree. Watch Romney’s remarks below:

News Sunday, Jan 15 2012

Miami Herald: The Boomerang Effect: R's Who Attack Newt Gingrich For Rivera Support Impugn Marco Rubio

On January 14, 2012, the Miami Herald reported:

Yesterday, after Miami Rep. David Rivera made it official that he supported Republican candidate Newt Gingrich, the anonymous conservative whisper campaign began. They pointed out that Rivera, the only one of the three Republican representatives from Miami not to endorse Mitt Romney, had been dogged by state and federal investigations owing to investigative reports in The Miami Herald. [...] But, by this standard, the Republicans' beloved Senator, Florida's Marco Rubio, needs some new furniture. Rivera isn't just an ally of Rubio's. He's a close family friend, like an uncle to Rubio's kids.

Josh Mandel Sunday, Jan 15 2012

AP: Ohio Treasurer Balances Job, Politics In 1st Year

On January 14, the Associated Press reported:

During his first year as state treasurer, Ohio Republican Josh Mandel has been a man between two worlds, balancing duties of his first statewide office with a fledgling U.S. Senate campaign. Mandel has aggressively worked the fundraising and speaking circuit these past months, amassing more than $3.8 million this year in his Senate bid against Democratic incumbent Sherrod Brown. That's perhaps more than any other Senate challenger in the country. At the same time, his weekly calendars as state treasurer are almost devoid of appointments outside of staff meetings and speaking engagements. And he's yet to hold a single news conference to discuss the work he's doing for Ohioans.

News Economy Jobs Taxes Friday, Jan 13 2012

Daily Kos: Mitt Romney's Favorite Success Story Took Millions In Government Aid

On January 13, 2012, Daily Kos reported:

Mitt Romney says questioning his record at Bain Capital makes you an enemy of free enterprise, but it turns out one of his favorite success stories would have been a failure without tens of millions in government subsidies.

News Economy Jobs Taxes Friday, Jan 13 2012

Washington Monthly: Get To Know Steel Dynamics

On January 13, 2012, Washington Monthly reported:

Indeed, Steel Dynamics isn’t some isolated story from Romney’s past that he would just as soon see us overlook; this is a story that Romney considers proof of his job-creating expertise. The takeaway, apparently, is that the Republican frontrunner wants government to get out of the way of the private sector, but only after the government gave Romney some handouts that helped boost his profits.

News Economy Jobs Taxes Friday, Jan 13 2012

TPM: Romney’s Conservative Businessman Pitch Runs Into Fire

On January 13, 2012, Talking Points Memo reported:

Mitt Romney is looking to steady his ship in South Carolina after overcoming a week of tough attacks on his Bain Capital days in New Hampshire. But while Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, and assorted Democrats have all gone after him from his left flank on the issue, there are signs that he may have weaknesses on the right as well.

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