Romney’s NEW OP-ED: What I Learned at Bain Capital

Mitt Romney at Bain

Romney Economics! Investing in Companies and Creating Jobs.

The original may be found on yesterday’s Wall Street Journal editorial page.

The back-to-school season is here, and as parents take their children to shop for school supplies, I suspect that many of them will be visiting a Staples store. I’m very familiar with those stores because Staples is one of many businesses we helped create and expand at Bain Capital, a firm that my colleagues and I built. The firm succeeded by growing and fixing companies.

The lessons I learned over my 15 years at Bain Capital were valuable in helping me turn around the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. They also helped me as governor of Massachusetts to turn a budget deficit into a surplus and reduce our unemployment rate to 4.7%. The lessons from that time would help me as president to fix our economy, create jobs and get things done in Washington.

A broad message emerges from my Bain Capital days: A good idea is not enough for a business to succeed. It requires a talented team, a good business plan and capital to execute it. That was true of companies we helped start, like Staples and the Bright Horizons child-care provider, and several of the struggling companies we helped turn around, like the Brookstone retailer and the contact-lens maker Wesley Jessen.

My presidency would make it easier for entrepreneurs and small businesses to get the investment dollars they need to grow, by reducing and simplifying taxes; replacing Obamacare with real health-care reform that contains costs and improves care; and by stemming the flood of new regulations that are tying small businesses in knots.

My business experience confirmed my belief in empowering people. For example, at Bain Capital we bought Accuride, a company that made truck rims and wheels, because we saw untapped potential there. We instituted performance bonuses for the management team, which had a dramatic impact. The managers made the plants more productive, and the company started growing, adding 300 jobs while Bain was involved. My faith in people, not government, is at the foundation of my plan to strengthen America’s middle class.

I also saw firsthand through these investments how energy costs impact the ability of a business to grow. Today, energy costs are weighing on job creators across America because President Obama has limited energy exploration and restricted development in ways that sap economic performance, curtail growth, and kill jobs. I will take a sensible approach to tapping our energy resources, which will both create jobs and make energy more affordable for every sector of our economy.

In the 1990s, when the “old-technology” steel industry in the U.S. was failing, Bain Capital helped build a new steel company, Steel Dynamics, which has grown into one of the largest steel producers in America today, holding its own against Chinese producers. The key to its success? State-of-the-art new technology.

Here are two lessons from the Steel Dynamics story: First, innovation is essential to the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing. We are the most innovative, entrepreneurial nation in the world. To maintain that lead, we must give people the skills to succeed. My plan for a stronger middle class includes policies to give every family access to great schools and quality teachers, to improve access to higher education, and to attract and retain the best talent from around the world.

The second lesson is that we must have a level playing field in international trade. As president, I will challenge unfair trade practices that are harming American workers.

Running a business also brings lessons in tackling challenges. I was on the board of a medical diagnostic-laboratory company, Damon, when a competitor announced that it had settled with the government over a charge of fraudulent Medicare billing. I and fellow Damon outside board members joined together and immediately hired an independent law firm to examine Damon’s own practices.

The investigation revealed a need to make some changes, which we did. The company, along with several other clinical-laboratory companies, ended up being fined for billing practices. And a Damon manager who was responsible for the fraud went to jail. The experience taught me that when you see a problem, run toward it or it will only get worse.

That will be my approach to our federal budget problem. I am committed to capping federal spending below 20% of GDP and reducing nondefense discretionary spending by 5%. This will surely result in much wailing and gnashing of teeth in Washington. But a failure of leadership has created our debt crisis, and ducking responsibility will only cripple the economy and smother opportunity for our children and grandchildren.

I’m not sure Bain Capital could have grown or turned around some of the companies we invested in had we faced today’s anti-business environment. Andy Puzder, the chief executive of CKE Restaurants Inc., which employs about 21,000 people at Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants, has said that the “current unfriendly economic environment perhaps best explains why American companies are sitting on over $2 trillion which they could invest.”

President Obama has piled on excessive regulations, proposed massive tax increases, added more than $5 trillion in federal debt, and failed to address the coming fiscal cliff—all of which is miring our nation in sluggish growth and high unemployment.

I know what it takes to turn around difficult situations. And I will put that experience to work, to get our economy back on track, create jobs, strengthen the middle class and lay the groundwork for America’s increased competitiveness in the world.

A few comments from Paul Johnson, if you’ll indulge, about why what Mitt says is so important:

1. Mitt’s succeeded before. We have some serious problems, but Mitt has displayed an unusual ability to solve difficult issues. From his tenure at Bain, to establishing and turning around other companies, to turning around the Olympics, Mitt Romney knows success and how to replicate it. (more…)

NEW! Romney’s Weekly Podcast: Romney/Ryan Plan Preserves & Protects Medicare

Something new!

Starting today, Mitt Romney will be airing weekly podcasts. Great idea!

Today’s message is about President Obama’s cuts to Medicare and Romney’s own plan to protect the commitment made to current seniors.

President Obama’s healthcare law raided $716 billion from the Medicare trust fund. And he did that to finance his takeover of the healthcare system.

Now if that wasn’t bad enough, his healthcare law also put in place a board of 15 unelected bureaucrats and gave them the power to make additional cuts to Medicare without even having to get approval from Congress. This means they could deny elderly Americans the care they’ve worked for their entire lives – all because President Obama trusts bureaucrats more than he trusts seniors and their doctors.

And here’s one more troubling aspect of all this: According to independent, non-partisan scorekeepers, these cuts the President’s people will take to Medicare won’t prevent it from going bankrupt: Experts estimate that Medicare’s trust funds will be exhausted just twelve short years from now.

Now there is good news, and that is there’s a better approach. Last November, I released a plan to save and strengthen Medicare – without making any changes for those that are 55 years of age and older. And then shortly after that, my running mate, Paul Ryan, he worked in a bipartisan way to advance a nearly identical series of reforms in Congress.

Now that he and I have teamed up, we’re going to ensure that seniors are protected from President Obama’s reckless actions. We’re going to take our solutions all the way to the White House.

We are going to start by repealing Obamacare. That law is threatening seniors, and it is a maze of new federal mandates, and taxes, and penalties that’s hampering job creation.

Once the partisan roadblock is removed, we can work with leaders from both parties to advance real solutions to save Medicare.

The Romney-Ryan plan will make no changes to Medicare for those that are retired or near retirement. And if we act soon, we can reorient our policies without asking seniors to reorganize their lives.

For younger Americans, we are going to strengthen Medicare by providing future retirees with federal financial support and letting them choose from a list of Medicare-approved coverage plans, including a traditional Medicare option.

The amount of financial support that a person would get would be adjusted based on their income; more help would go to the poor or the sick — and less help would go to those that are financially better off. It would be based on how much the plans cost so that seniors always have access to affordable, quality coverage. And no senior could ever be denied coverage for any reason.

The Romney-Ryan plan preserves and protects Medicare – and it guarantees the future of the program by forcing insurance companies to compete for business. Choice and competition will drive costs down and make quality better, resulting in more affordable, better care for our seniors.

We’ve got to save this critical program. You paid into it, and you’ve earned it. I think it’s outrageous that the President took $716 billion out of the Medicare trust fund to pay for Obamacare. No President should put in jeopardy your benefits. And no board of bureaucrats should ever be empowered to make decisions that could deny you the kind of care that you deserve.

This November, I hope you will reject President Obama’s cuts to Medicare. And I hope you will choose Paul Ryan and me to protect health and retirement security, to promote prosperity, and restore our economic growth.



GOP V.P. candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and his mother, Betty Ryan Douglas, wave to a huge crowd of supporters at a VICTORY rally in ‘The Villages’ in Florida. Aug 18, 2012 (Photo / AP)

Speaking in Florida today at The Villages, Paul Ryan also echoed Romney’s message. After introducing his 78 year old mother, Betty Ryan Douglas, to the large crowd Ryan spoke of the Medicare benefits he witnessed when he was a boy and his grandmother, stricken with Alzheimer’s, was moved into his home to be cared for. Ryan revealed that he and his mom were his grandmother’s two primary caregivers and also spoke of his mom’s reliance on the promise of Medicare:


Ryan:

“My mom has been on Medicare for over ten years and I won’t tell you exactly how many years over ten years she’s been on it. She plays tennis every week. She exercises every day. She planned her retirement around this promise that the government made her because she paid her payroll taxes into this program which she had this promise with. That’s a promise we have to keep. Here is what the President won’t tell you about his Medicare plan, about Obamacare. The President raids $716 billion from the Medicare program to pay for the Obamacare program. What’s more, in addition to that, he puts a board of 15 unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats in charge of Medicare who are required to cut Medicare in ways that will lead to denied care for current seniors. You want to know what Medicare is saying about this? From Medicare officials themselves: one out of six of our hospitals and our nursing homes will go out of business as a result of this. Four million seniors are projected to lose their Medicare advantage plans that they enjoy and they chose today under this Obamacare plan. What’s worse is the President’s campaign calls this an achievement. Do you think raiding Medicare to pay for Obamacare is achievement? Do you think that empowering a board of bureaucrats to cut Medicare [is] an achievement? Neither do I. Medicare should not be used as a piggy bank for Obamacare. Medicare should be the promise that is made to our current seniors period, end of story. Here is what Mitt Romney and I will do: We will end the raid of Medicare. We will restore the promise of this program and we will make sure that this board of bureaucrats will not mess with my mom’s health care or your mom’s health care.”

UPDATE - Follow @PaulRyansMom on Twitter here. Follow @RepPaulRyan here.

Help America’s Comeback Team, Romney & Ryan, block the lies coming from Team Obama by sharing this information with all you know.

Looking forward to another Romney podcast next Saturday!

Follow Jayde Wyatt on Twitter @YayforSummer

Romney & Ryan: Refuting Team Obama’s Lies With Medicare Truth, FLORIDA

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are pictured ‘talking shop’ on their way to Waukesha, WI last weekend. The GOP ticket separated earlier this week in order to meet with more voters at VICTORY rallies in important swing states. (Photo – Saul Loeb/Getty Images)

Spreading the truth on Medicare across America is very much the goal of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. Right now, the focus is on Florida…

A couple of days ago, Mitt Romney was interviewed by Sonni Abatta with FOX 35 TV in Orlando, Florida (Aug 15, 2012). Along with other topics, Romney told it like it is on Medicare, how his plan will affect hispanics, and refuted Obama’s lies. (At the end of the interview, Ms. Abatta also asked Governor Romney “If you’re in the White House, what is your favorite pastime going to be?”) Take a look:

● Romney’s press team today released ‘ONE YEAR LATER, MEDICARE IS STILL GOING BROKE‘:

One Year Ago Today, President Obama Warned That Failing To Fix Medicare Would “Gobble Up Basically The Entire Federal Budget”:

President Obama, One Year Ago Today: “The Bigger Problem Is Medicare And Medicaid. … Medicare And Medicaid Would Gobble Up Basically The Entire Federal Budget.” OBAMA: “The bigger problem is Medicare and Medicaid. And the reason that’s a problem is because health care costs keep on going up faster than inflation, people’s wages, people’s incomes at the same time as folks are getting older, so we’ve got more people into the system. And if we didn’t do anything, then Medicare and Medicaid would gobble up basically the entire federal budget.” (President Barack Obama, Remarks, Alpha, IL, 8/17/11)

What Has President Obama “Achieved” During His Four Years In Office? He’s Failed To Lead On Fixing Medicare And Slashed $716 Billion To Pay For Obamacare:

According To The Nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Obamacare Cuts $716 Billion From Medicare. (Congressional Budget Office, Letter To Speaker John Boehner, 7/24/12)

The Miami Herald: “Obama’s $700 Billion Medicare-Cut Problem” (Marc Caputo, “Obama’s $700 Billion Medicare-Cut Problem,” The Miami Herald, 8/12/12)

President Obama’s Senior Campaign Aide Bragged That President Obama “Achieved” $700 Billion In “Cuts In Medicare.” CUTTER: “Well, you know ask the wealthy to pay a little bit more. Cut waste from the government. Reform Medicare. More than $300 billion in savings from Medicare. On top of the savings we’ve already achieved. You know I heard Mitt Romney deride the $700 billion cuts in Medicare that the president achieved through health care reform.” (CBS’s “Face The Nation,” 8/12/12)

And Millions Of Seniors Are The Ones Who Will Pay The Price For President Obama’s Medicare Cuts:

FactCheck.org: “The Promise That ‘Benefits Will Remain The Same’ Is Just As Fictional As The Town Of Mayberry…” “Currently, about 1 in every 4 Medicare beneficiary is enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan. For many of them, the words in this ad ring hollow, and the promise that ‘benefits will remain the same’ is just as fictional as the town of Mayberry was when Griffith played the local sheriff.” (Brooks Jackson, “Mayberry Misleads On Medicare,” FactCheck.org, 7/31/10)

Read the entire press release here. Save for future use and share it!

VP candidate Paul Ryan will be in important swing state Florida tomorrow to spread Medicare truth at a Victory Rally with senior citizens at ‘The Villages’ – the worlds largest retirement community. 31,860 residents at The Villages received Social Security benefits at the end of 2010. Ryan is bringing along a special guest – country music artist Lee Greenwood. Another noteworthy guest will be there, too – a very important advocate for the Romney/Ryan approach to Medicare – Ryan’s 78 year-old mother, Betty.

Ryan’s stop in Florida will be his first visit there since becoming the VP candidate. The big event is scheduled for 10AM-11AM Eastern time. For televised coverage check C-Span tomorrow.

Possible livefeeds:
FOX News
CNN
C-Span 1
C-Span 2
C-Span 3

Mitt Romney Press today also shared this hit-the-nail-on-the-head article on ‘The Mediscare Boomerang‘:

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