Big Red Car here on a football Saturday in the ATX. Lots of good games on the flatscreen today. There is nothing like a good weekend of college football particularly this year where there is no real dominate team — sorry Nick Satan.
So, President Romney has been in office for going on two years now and it is possible to catalog the profound changes that have occurred under his administration.
Perhaps the most important and obvious change is that of tone. The White House seems like a friendlier place. Who knew? The guy has a sense of humor and Ann Romney is a sensible woman not given to self promotion or putting on airs. Down home!
When Mitt decided to forego the expense of a lavish inaugural ceremony, the message was immediate and profound. I recall his words: “Americans are hurting and we will not spend their hard earned money on a celebration until THEY have something worth celebrating. We shall have a simple swearing in and oath of office and then — we go to work!”
The elimination of lavish state dinners while symbolic has set a tone that is not possible to miss. There is something inspiring by having all state dinners serving hot dogs and hamburgers — cheeseburgers are now a big deal.
This became the first stroke in what would become the now famous Romney frugality.
It was clear that Mitt Romney knew how to run things other than just political campaigns. His appointments were swift and flooded the capital with a new wave of competence. No czars need apply!
The decision making mechanism of the White House became nimble and quick whether grappling with the economy or foreign relations. Decisions were transparent and Congress became a partner in fashioning a better future.
Romney worked with Congress as an equal partner. He embraced the Reagan mantra: “It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you don’t care who gets the credit.”
Perhaps the first tangible improvement was in the new Romney energy policy. The Keystone Pipeline construction was initiated as well as the authorization for the construction of six new refineries, the first in decades. Federal impediments to drilling on public lands were streamlined. Already the country is on the verge of energy independence which has had the favorable impact of dramatically reducing the cost of gasoline but also of severing the nation’s dependence on imported oil. This has reduced tensions in the Middle East.
Russia, which derives more than half of their revenue from oil, has become a more civilized country as it teeters on the verge of economic collapse with gasoline prices at less than one dollar a gallon.
The American economy and every American has received a huge shot in the arm as the cost of energy has had the equivalent impact of an across the board tax cut.
The Romney nuclear power initiative in which the government pledged to fund up to 95% of any new nuclear power plant in the first thirty states to apply, led to the creation of a huge number of jobs as well as providing the opportunity to replace environmentally damaging coal plants with clean energy while simultaneously reducing the cost of electricity. This will result in construction jobs, operating jobs, lower power costs and economic activity in every state that has applied. These are truly shovel ready jobs.
Energy was the low hanging fruit and the fruit has been sweet.
The economy’s new found strength and resurgence is no longer fragile and tenuous. The reduction of the world’s second highest corporate tax rate and the repatriation of vast sums of money held hostage overseas to a flawed tax policy were quickly rectified by the Congress and signed by President Romney.
The full funding of the Small Business Administration has resulted in a massive wave of small business jobs as well as a huge increase to Federal revenues as these businesses have also dramatically increased their profits and resultant taxes — all with no increase in Federal income tax rates. The declining unemployment numbers and the increasing median family income are proof of the effectiveness of this program. For the first time in decades, the labor force participation rate is increasing which has the impact of putting more income in the hands of workers while also generating more tax revenue as the work rolls expand.
The spending freeze initiated on the second day of his administration made the Congress and the government confront the continual increase in spending. Taken together with the resurgent economy, increases in Federal tax receipts — this spending discipline will generate an operating surplus this year and will provide the foundation for the long term reduction of the national debt. President Romney has made America balance its books in less than two years.
In Mitt Romney’s first week in office, he met with the Texas Governor in El Paso and announced the immediate construction of the fence between Mexico and Texas. The National Guard of Texas was immediately deployed to secure the border as the construction work began. In days, the flow of illegals, drugs and potential terrorists was stemmed. The flow dried up and law enforcement in south Texas and in the Rio Grande Valley immediately detected the reduction in crime.
Other border states noticed the same favorable impacts.
In less than two years, the border fence is now nearing completion indicating this huge problem has always been a simple matter of effective leadership.
President Romney inherited a chaotic foreign policy with the delicate gains made in Iraq and Afghanistan and the mischief being created by Russia threatening long term stability in that part of the world. The status of forces agreements negotiated with both Iraq and Afghanistan allowed American troops to be stationed in those countries to protect their democracies. When President Romney unleashed American boots on the ground supported by the Seventh Fleet and squadrons of A-10 attack aircraft to destroy the nascent Islamic State coming out of Syria, the wisdom of this arrangement and immediate response became apparent. ISIS was eliminate in less than a month of sustained combat.
Romney’s decision to confront the Iranians — the world’s largest exporters and funders of terrorism — has turned out to be effective. The bombing of the power plants which provided power to the Iranian centrifuges was a brilliant act as it turned the centrifuges off at minimal loss of life. The Iranians have not been able to re-start their nuclear program. Where the Obama administration had offered up blandishments as to not allowing a nuclear Iran to emerge, the Romney administration struck with certainty thereby shoring up our deteriorating relationship with Israel. The reduction of the price of oil has also dealt the Iranians an effective blow as they cannot afford to fund terrorism at the level they had previously.
When the Iranians attempted to hold the world hostage by interdicting the Straits of Hormuz with a naval blockade, the Romney administration resolved the situation immediately and with no drama by sinking the entire Iranian navy in a three day campaign with no loss of American lives.
President Romney’s willingness to deploy American military might in a just cause without delay and dithering has put our enemies on the defensive around the world.
The decision to reverse the contraction of the American military decline and to add ten Army divisions and five Marine divisions together with the redeployment of American armor in support of NATO has made Russia more thoughtful and less adventurous. The combined impact of declining oil revenue and a newly focused and reinvigorated NATO has made both Putin and the Russian people more thoughtful about their plans for expansion. Romney has not bothered to say that Russia is a small country, he has demonstrated it with forceful leadership.
The recent elections in Egypt, Libya and the overthrow of Assad in Syria are significant steps toward stability which could never have happened without American leadership and the resolve to actually solve problems that Mitt Romney has brought to the table.
Size of government
While the decisions to eliminate the Departments of Education and Energy were controversial at the time, the return of these regulatory oversight requirements to the states has worked effectively and has eliminated an enormous cost to the Federal government while also eliminating wholesale duplication and waste. It is already difficult to remember what these bloated bureaucracies did before they were eliminated.
The wholesale housecleaning of the Department of Justice has breathed a welcome new attitude toward the Federal government’s relations with the states and our citizens.
The Romney administration’s willingness to hold government functionaries accountable and to fire them for cause has eliminated long standing scandals at the IRS and the DOJ and has streamlined the actual performance of government. The American public appreciates and believes that the government is not their enemy. President Romney made this so.
The Romney administration has clearly had a profound impact on the future of America, a truly exceptional country which is no longer afraid to be exceptional. Thank you, President Romney.
It all seems like a dream, doesn’t it?