Republican Governors are urging Mitt Romney to actually say what he’d do if elected, making clear that just tearing down the President will not be sufficient to win the presidency. Not a single point of Romney’s 59-point economic plan would create jobs now, and independent economists have said Romney’s plan could make the economy worse. Governor Scott Walker’s criticisms come days after he said Romney’s plan to eliminate jobs for cops, firefighters, and police officers was the wrong lesson to learn from the Wisconsin recall. He joins Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and Republicans in Ohio, who are pushing Romney to stop talking down the improving economy in their states. Romney’s campaign has said he’d be proposing new ideas to grow the economy today – will he take the advice of the leaders of his own party?
From the WSJ: Romney Points to Failures, GOP Governors Tout Jobs
Mr. Romney’s message that the national economy remains sour is central to his core campaign argument that the president’s policies have impeded the recovery, and that someone with deep business experience is better to set the U.S. right.
But Republican governors in states that will decide the election, such as Virginia, Ohio, Florida, Michigan and Iowa, have a rosier view. While Mr. Romney points to a feeble recovery, underscored by last month’s grim jobs report, the governors—looking to their own political fortunes—cite job growth, higher corporate investment and the rebirth of domestic manufacturing in their states.
Iowa’s Republican governor, Terry Branstad, is part of a contingent of GOP governors and party elders urging Mr. Romney to re-tailor his message by highlighting the success stories under way in a half-dozen GOP-led states, even if it means diluting his gloomier national pitch.
While the Romney campaign could easily incorporate that message before the election, the competing narratives have led to some awkward moments. When Mr. Romney traveled to Iowa last month, his campaign released a Web ad highlighting Iowans who were struggling to find work—in a state with a 5.1% jobless rate, the seventh lowest in the U.S.
“My state is seeing significant growth,” Mr. Branstad said in an interview, adding that he didn’t see why the Romney campaign decided to highlight unemployed Iowa residents. Ticking off a long list of companies that are expanding in the state, including Alcoa and John Deere, he said, “We are doing very well.”
Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, who became a champion to conservatives afterfending off a recall effort last week, offered a bit of advice to Mitt Romney: Refine your economic message andgive people a reason to vote for you, rather than simply against President Obama.
“I don’t know that voters are there yet with Governor Romney,” Mr. Walker said on Thursday. “It doesn’t mean that he doesn’t talk about it, it doesn’t mean that he hasn’t thought about it, but I think he’s got to have a simple message of not only why we need to replace the current occupant in the White House, but also why he would be better.”
Mr. Walker, who has emerged as a leading voice in the Republican Party after becoming the nation’s first governor to survive a recall, saidMr. Romney needed to broaden his appeal beyond Republicans to carry Wisconsin in November. He urged Mr. Romney to take a lesson from what voters demanded in his race and brand himself as someone who is committed to tackling government spending and other difficult issues.
“If Romney’s going to have a shot in our state, you can’t win with just Republican votes,” Mr. Walker said, speaking at a breakfast sponsored by The Christian Science Monitor. “He’s got to get beyond the Republicans. He’s got to be viewed as a reformer, somebody who is going to make life better and put our state and country back on track.”
He added: “He’s got a shot, but my win alone is not enough, he’s got to build off that.”
Gov. Scott Walker urged Mitt Romney to develop a more cogent economic message Thursday in order to win over the fickle swing voters needed to carry Wisconsin and win the presidency.
The Republican governor’s advice was more a critique of style than substance, but he warned Romney that framing the fall election solely as a referendum on PresidentBarack Obama would be a risky bet.
“He’s got plans … But I think it’s got to be, narrow it down to a very simple set of messages that embody the larger plan that he has,” Walker said of Romney’s fiscal and economic policy proposals at a morning breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor. “I think it’s one where people have to walk away saying, ‘It’s not just a referendum on President Obama’, it’s also got to be … ‘I believe that candidate Romney’s got a plan that I can believe in.’”
“If Gov. Romney looks at Wisconsin and thinks that he can win just because I have an ‘R’ next to my name or he has an ‘R’ next to his name, I think voters see that as being just about being Republican, it’s not enough to win Wisconsin.
*Update* hat tip rikyrah
From Washington Post: GOP governor to Romney: Stop hyping bad economic news in my state! By Greg Sargent
The Wall Street Journal has just posted a terrific story on the increasing tensions between the Romney campaign, which is playing up bad economic news on a daily basis in every conceivable forum, and Republican governors, who prefer to emphasize that things are improving in their states.
Perhaps the most interesting piece of news in the piece is this bit from Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who openly calls on Romney to stop hyping the bad economic news in his state:
When Mr. Romney traveled to Iowa last month, his campaign released a Web ad highlighting Iowans who were struggling to find work — in a state with a 5.1 percent jobless rate, the seventh lowest in the U.S. “My state is seeing significant growth,” Mr. Branstad said in an interview, adding that he didn’t see why the Romney campaign decided to highlight unemployed Iowa residents. Ticking off a long list of companies that are expanding in the state, including Alcoa and John Deere, he said, “We are doing very well.”
Ahead of Mr. Romney’s Iowa campaign stop in Des Moines last month, Mr. Branstad said, he suggested that Mr. Romney put aside his jobs message and focus on the perils of mounting U.S. debt. “Debt is the number one issue that people in Iowa want to talk about,” he said. Mr. Branstad wants the Romney campaign to focus more on what he and other GOP governors have done to cut taxes, trim state budgets and regulations, and, in some cases, to challenge labor unions.
It’s time for Mitt Romney to say what he’d do to create jobs. Even his party is asking for a plan. What’s your plan Mitt? Is it to give tax breaks to the rich? Cut Social Security and Medicare? FIRE POLICEMAN, TEACHRS, & FIREFIGHTERS? APPEAL OBAMACARE? ROLL BACK REGULATIONS? INSULT SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS?
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS TO CREATE JOBS, MITT ROMNEY?