Priorities Memo

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					To:	
  Interested	
  Parties	
  
From:	
  Bill	
  Burton,	
  Priorities	
  USA	
  Action	
  
Super	
  Tuesday	
  Memo:	
  Romney’s	
  Agenda	
  for	
  the	
  Wealthy	
  Hurting	
  Him	
  With	
  
Those	
  Who	
  Are	
  Not	
  
	
  	
  
Mitt	
  Romney’s	
  narrow	
  win	
  in	
  his	
  home	
  state	
  of	
  Michigan	
  was	
  only	
  possible	
  because	
  
of	
  overwhelming	
  margins	
  with	
  the	
  wealthiest	
  Republican	
  primary	
  voters.	
  In	
  what	
  
has	
  become	
  a	
  predictable	
  outcome	
  during	
  the	
  Republican	
  nomination	
  fight,	
  Romney	
  
once	
  again	
  lost	
  voters	
  making	
  less	
  than	
  $100,000	
  per	
  year.	
  	
  	
  
	
  	
  
Between	
  Cadillacs,	
  Nascar,	
  and	
  $10,000	
  bets,	
  Romney	
  certainly	
  has	
  done	
  his	
  fair	
  
share	
  to	
  demonstrate	
  an	
  inability	
  to	
  understand	
  the	
  economic	
  challenges	
  facing	
  
most	
  Americans.	
  But	
  more	
  importantly,	
  Americans	
  understand	
  that	
  Romney’s	
  
policies	
  would	
  primarily	
  help	
  himself	
  and	
  other	
  extremely	
  wealthy	
  individuals	
  at	
  
the	
  expense	
  of	
  the	
  middle	
  class.	
  
	
  	
  
On	
  Wednesday,	
  the	
  Tax	
  Policy	
  Center	
  released	
  its	
  analysis	
  of	
  Romney’s	
  budget-­‐
busting	
  tax	
  plan	
  showing	
  that	
  he	
  would	
  provide	
  a	
  new	
  tax	
  cut	
  of	
  $250,000	
  to	
  those	
  
earning	
  over	
  $1	
  million	
  a	
  year	
  but	
  he	
  would	
  raise	
  taxes	
  on	
  those	
  struggling	
  to	
  get	
  by.	
  
His	
  other	
  economic	
  ideas	
  seem	
  designed	
  to	
  simply	
  make	
  life	
  more	
  convenient	
  for	
  
the	
  very	
  wealthiest:	
  deregulating	
  Wall	
  Street,	
  rolling	
  back	
  clean	
  air	
  protections,	
  
cutting	
  taxes	
  for	
  big	
  corporations	
  and	
  bashing	
  unions.	
  	
  
	
  	
  
Romney’s	
  agenda	
  for	
  the	
  wealthy	
  is	
  measurably	
  hurting	
  him	
  with	
  those	
  who	
  are	
  not.	
  
In	
  a	
  recent	
  CNN	
  poll,	
  65%	
  of	
  voters	
  said	
  Romney	
  “favors	
  the	
  rich.”	
  That’s	
  
substantially	
  higher	
  than	
  any	
  of	
  his	
  Republican	
  primary	
  opponents.	
  Even	
  John	
  
McCain	
  and	
  President	
  Bush	
  did	
  not	
  have	
  such	
  dismal	
  numbers	
  on	
  a	
  similar	
  question.	
  
Exit	
  polls	
  have	
  shown	
  him	
  underperforming	
  with	
  middle	
  class	
  votes	
  in	
  every	
  
primary	
  so	
  far	
  and	
  general	
  election	
  polls	
  show	
  a	
  decisive	
  majority	
  of	
  Americans	
  
believe	
  Romney	
  does	
  not	
  understand	
  their	
  needs.	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  the	
  Republican	
  primary,	
  Romney’s	
  road	
  to	
  plurality	
  has	
  been	
  based	
  on	
  running	
  up	
  
large	
  margins	
  with	
  the	
  few	
  voters	
  who	
  earn	
  over	
  $200,000	
  a	
  year	
  and	
  allowing	
  his	
  
various	
  rivals	
  to	
  divide	
  up	
  middle	
  class	
  votes.	
  While	
  Romney	
  seems	
  likely	
  to	
  limp	
  to	
  
the	
  Republican	
  nomination	
  with	
  this	
  monopoly	
  on	
  the	
  wealthiest	
  voters,	
  he	
  will	
  
enter	
  the	
  general	
  election	
  as	
  a	
  millionaire	
  whose	
  nomination	
  was	
  ensured	
  by	
  
millionaires	
  after	
  he	
  promised	
  policies	
  to	
  benefit	
  millionaires.	
  	
  
	
  	
  
Background	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  Michigan,	
  Romney	
  Only	
  Won	
  Voters	
  Making	
  Over	
  $100,000	
  Per	
  Year.	
  In	
  
Michigan	
  exit	
  polls,	
  Romney	
  only	
  beat	
  Santorum	
  among	
  those	
  earning	
  over	
  
$100,000	
  a	
  year.	
  His	
  margin	
  of	
  victory	
  was	
  provided	
  by	
  winning	
  a	
  large	
  majority	
  of	
  
voters	
  earning	
  over	
  $200,000	
  per	
  year.	
  [CNN	
  Exit	
  Poll]	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  Iowa,	
  Romney	
  Only	
  Won	
  Voters	
  Making	
  Over	
  $100,000	
  Per	
  Year.	
  In	
  Iowa	
  exit	
  
polls,	
  the	
  only	
  income	
  subgroup	
  Romney	
  won	
  was	
  those	
  making	
  over	
  $100,000	
  a	
  
year.	
  [CNN	
  Exit	
  Poll]	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  New	
  Hampshire,	
  Romney	
  Won	
  Majority	
  Only	
  Of	
  Voters	
  Making	
  Over	
  
$200,000.	
  In	
  New	
  Hampshire	
  exit	
  polls,	
  even	
  though	
  he	
  won	
  decisively,	
  Romney	
  
only	
  won	
  a	
  majority	
  among	
  voters	
  making	
  over	
  $200,000	
  a	
  year.	
  His	
  support	
  
declined	
  corresponding	
  to	
  each	
  drop	
  in	
  income	
  level	
  below$200,000.	
  [CNN	
  Exit	
  Poll]	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  SC,	
  the	
  Only	
  Group	
  Romney	
  Won	
  Was	
  Over	
  $200,000.	
  In	
  SC	
  exit	
  polls,	
  Romney	
  
only	
  won	
  those	
  earning	
  over	
  $200,000	
  a	
  year.	
  [CNN	
  Exit	
  Poll]	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  FL,	
  Romney	
  Won	
  Majority	
  Only	
  Of	
  Voters	
  Over	
  $200,000.	
  In	
  Florida	
  exit	
  polls,	
  
even	
  though	
  he	
  won	
  the	
  state	
  decisively,	
  Romney	
  only	
  won	
  a	
  majority	
  among	
  voters	
  
making	
  over	
  $200,000	
  a	
  year.	
  His	
  margin	
  declined	
  corresponding	
  to	
  each	
  drop	
  in	
  
income	
  level	
  below	
  $200,000.	
  [CNN	
  Exit	
  Poll]	
  
	
  	
  
NBC/Wall	
  StreetJournal	
  Poll:	
  Romney	
  Far	
  Under	
  Water	
  on	
  Caring	
  About	
  
Average	
  People.	
  In	
  the	
  NBC/Wall	
  Street	
  Journal	
  poll	
  released	
  March	
  5th,	
  23%	
  of	
  
adults	
  feels	
  Romney	
  cares	
  about	
  average	
  people	
  while	
  46%	
  do	
  not.	
  The	
  23-­‐point	
  
negative	
  is	
  an	
  increase	
  from	
  15-­‐point	
  negative	
  in	
  January.	
  	
  [NBC/Wall	
  Street	
  
Journal,	
  3/5/12]	
  
	
  	
  
Pew	
  Poll:	
  Large	
  Majority	
  Believe	
  Romney	
  Doesn’t	
  Understand	
  Their	
  Needs.	
  By	
  
a	
  61-­‐29	
  margin,	
  voters	
  do	
  not	
  believe	
  Romney	
  “Understands	
  the	
  needs	
  of	
  people	
  like	
  
you.”	
  [Pew	
  People	
  and	
  the	
  Press,	
  2/13/12]	
  
	
  	
  
ABC/Washington	
  Post	
  Poll:	
  Decisive	
  Margin	
  for	
  President	
  Obama	
  on	
  
Protecting	
  the	
  Middle	
  Class.	
  	
  By	
  a	
  56-­‐37	
  margin,	
  voters	
  trust	
  President	
  Obama	
  
over	
  Mitt	
  Romney	
  on	
  “protecting	
  the	
  middle	
  class.”	
  [Washington	
  Post,	
  2/5/12]	
  
	
  	
  
ABC/Washington	
  Post	
  Poll:	
  Romney	
  Losing	
  Support	
  Quickly	
  from	
  Middle	
  and	
  
Lower	
  Income	
  Voters.	
  Among	
  those	
  making	
  under	
  $50,000	
  per	
  year,	
  Romney	
  
unfavorable	
  ratings	
  jumped	
  20	
  points	
  in	
  the	
  month	
  of	
  January.	
  [Washington	
  
Post,	
  1/24/12]	
  
	
  	
  
CNN	
  Poll:	
  65%	
  of	
  Voters	
  Believe	
  Romney	
  favors	
  the	
  rich.	
  According	
  to	
  a	
  CNN	
  
poll	
  this	
  week,	
  65%	
  of	
  voters	
  believe	
  Romney	
  favors	
  the	
  rich.	
  That’s	
  higher	
  than	
  any	
  
of	
  his	
  Republican	
  opponents.	
  On	
  a	
  similar	
  question	
  fewer	
  voters	
  believed	
  
Republican	
  nominee	
  John	
  McCain	
  and	
  then-­‐Republican	
  nominee	
  George	
  Bush	
  
favored	
  the	
  wealthy	
  in	
  their	
  policies.	
  [CNN,	
  2/16/12;	
  CBS	
  News,	
  10/23/08;	
  Gallup,	
  
8/26/08]	
  
	
  	
  
Romney’s	
  Tax	
  Plan	
  Would	
  Cut	
  Taxes	
  for	
  the	
  Rich,	
  Raise	
  Taxes	
  on	
  Poor	
  and	
  
Increase	
  the	
  Deficit.	
  According	
  to	
  CNN,	
  “Those	
  making	
  $1	
  million	
  or	
  more	
  would	
  
receive	
  an	
  average	
  tax	
  cut	
  of	
  $250,000,	
  an	
  8.1%	
  tax	
  rate	
  reduction,	
  while	
  the	
  
average	
  American	
  would	
  get	
  $2,800,	
  a	
  3.5%	
  rate	
  drop.”	
  According	
  to	
  the	
  Hill,	
  
Romney’s	
  tax	
  changes,	
  “would	
  tack	
  an	
  extra	
  $3.4	
  trillion	
  on	
  to	
  budget	
  deficits	
  over	
  
the	
  next	
  10	
  years,	
  compared	
  to	
  a	
  world	
  where	
  the	
  Bush-­‐era	
  tax	
  rates	
  were	
  
extended.”	
  According	
  to	
  CNN,	
  “the	
  bottom	
  20	
  percent	
  would	
  see	
  their	
  average	
  
federal	
  tax	
  rate	
  increase	
  $149,	
  or	
  1.3	
  percent.”	
  [CBS,	
  3/2/12;	
  The	
  Hill,	
  2/29/12;	
  
CNN,	
  3/1/12]	
  
	
  	
  
Romney	
  Proposed	
  Repealing	
  Wall	
  Street	
  Reform.	
  According	
  to	
  Believe	
  in	
  
America,	
  Romney’s	
  plan	
  for	
  jobs	
  and	
  economic	
  growth	
  included	
  a	
  proposal	
  to	
  
“Repeal	
  Dodd-­‐Frank	
  and	
  replace	
  with	
  streamlined,	
  modern	
  regulatory	
  framework.”	
  
[Believe	
  in	
  America:	
  Mitt	
  Romney’s	
  Plan	
  for	
  Jobs	
  and	
  Economic	
  Growth,	
  Pg.	
  
154,	
  9/6/11]	
  
	
  	
  
Romney	
  Opposed	
  Air	
  Pollution	
  Rules	
  from	
  Coal	
  Plants	
  and	
  Criticized	
  Other	
  
Environmental	
  Regulations.	
  [Foster	
  Daily	
  Democrat,	
  Mitt	
  Romney	
  Op-­‐
Ed,	
  8/27/11;	
  Mitt	
  Romney’s	
  Plan	
  for	
  Jobs	
  and	
  Economic	
  Growth,	
  9/6/11]	
  
	
  	
  
In	
  Michigan,	
  Romney	
  has	
  appealed	
  to	
  Republican	
  voters	
  by	
  attacking	
  labor	
  
unions.	
  According	
  to	
  McClatchy	
  Newspapers,	
  "Campaigning	
  in	
  Michigan,	
  Romney	
  is	
  
striking	
  a	
  far	
  different	
  note	
  on	
  organized	
  labor	
  than	
  his	
  late	
  father	
  did	
  when	
  he	
  
chaired	
  American	
  Motors	
  from	
  1954-­‐1962	
  and	
  enjoyed	
  good	
  relations	
  with	
  unions.	
  
Instead,	
  Mitt	
  Romney	
  is	
  ripping	
  labor	
  unions	
  at	
  every	
  turn.	
  "Once	
  upon	
  a	
  time,	
  labor	
  
unions	
  fought	
  to	
  secure	
  important	
  protections	
  for	
  American	
  workers	
  and	
  help	
  our	
  
economy	
  grow,"	
  Romney's	
  campaign	
  said	
  last	
  week.	
  "Unfortunately,	
  today	
  they	
  too	
  
often	
  stand	
  as	
  obstacles	
  to	
  growth	
  and	
  fight	
  against	
  the	
  workers	
  they	
  are	
  supposed	
  
to	
  serve."	
  [McClatchy	
  Newspapers,	
  2/19/12]	
  

				
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