Romney says Obama doesn’t deserve a passing grade
Mitt Romney gives Barack Obama an ‘F’ for his performance as president. But that’s not because the former Republican presidential candidate still wants the job — at least, he’s not ready to say yet whether he wants it or not.
“I’m not going to give him a passing grade for the year,” Romney said of Obama on NBC’s Today show.
Sure, the economy was in free-fall a year ago and is now growing. Sure, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is back above 10,000. Sure, the U.S. no longer seems headed for a new depression.
But Romney points out that unemployment is still very high. Plus, the Obama administration has built any progress to date on the unsound foundation of new debt.
“It could have taken much better steps,” Romney said, without elaborating.
“The private sector is scared in America right now. It’s the most anti-job, anti-growth, anti-investment agenda we’ve seen in Washington in decades.”
The former Republican governor of Massachusetts appeared on national television to hawk a new book that some view as the unofficial launch of his presidential candidacy for 2012.
But Romney scoffs at such speculation: “This is counting chickens before the hen has met the rooster. I haven’t made a decision like that yet.”
He has a point. The November 2012 election is more than 2-1/2 years away.
But if the cynics are right and politicians are always campaigning, and if the task of raising millions upon millions of campaign dollars is an extra challenge this time because of the weak economy, then presidential wannabes might rightly conclude that the early bid catches the term.
In one sense, Romney is already lagging. Sarah Palin, the former Republican vice presidential nominee seen in some quarters as a candidate for 2012, launched her own political bestseller four months ago. She’s also got that nice gig as a Fox political pundit.
Politicians often write books as a way to sell themselves to voters and financial contributors.
Romney describes his new tome, “No Apology: The Case for American Greatness,” as an outflowing from his years of experience in politics and the private sector.
The Republican, who lost out on the 2008 presidential nomination and finished a distant second behind Ron Paul in a recent conservative voter straw poll, says he can think up loads of new ways to bring renewal to America.
“I have a lot of ideas. So do other people. That’s the great thing about this extraordinary democracy of ours,” he said.
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Photo credit: Reuters/Brian Snyder (Romney at 2008 Republican National Convention), Reuters/Brian Blanco (Palin at NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 race Feb. 14)