2 Boiling Points of View: Steering the right course, Obama for President

Tamar Willis, Features Editor

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Oh no! Not another youth vote for President Obama!

Wait a minute. Before you pounce, let me make my case. There are a lot of reasons, both negative and positive, for voting Democratically this election.

Let’s start with the economy.

In the short term, everyone agrees we need to raise the standard of living and put a dent in the deficit. The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) successfully created jobs through government investment in public works. According to USA Today, if President Obama hadn’t passed this stimulus, unemployment would be up to 12 percent instead of just 7.8 percent where it is today.

To get revenue flowing, President Obama proposes to undo the tax cuts President Bush gave to Americans who make $250,000 or more a year—the top 2 percent of society – to bring in the revenue that we desperately need.

The financial bubble and the crash that followed were in part symptomatic of a deregulated banking industry. The Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, also passed by this president, provides just such regulation, establishing market discipline and transparency, and protecting consumers. This legislation is a clear reminder of the long-term vision that President Obama has, and that his opponent and his slogans do not demonstrate.

Another arena, one especially relevant to teenagers, is the role of the federal government in education. Though most funding comes from the states, the Federal government plays an important role. (A lot of us will be filling out FAFSA’s soon). Obama has increased national scholarships and financial aid, so that kids from working and middle-class families can pursue an education and contribute to the workforce.

But long-term concerns seem to lie outside of Governor Romney’s agenda. Romney would cut back on federal educational funding to states, and completely eliminate the Department of Education. He’s even flip-flopped on his support of Pell grants, which help poor students pay for college.

This attitude is hurtful to the economic future of America. If we keep going in this direction, we’ll fall behind in science and technology, and those industries will relocate in India or China. Moreover, these policies seems to come from a reverence for private enterprise and a disdain for any government programs. Since Romney wants to scale back on the federal government, we should scale back on our education system? Absolutely not.

In terms of energy, while both candidates are trying to increase energy independence, a Romney Administration would eliminate subsidies for alternative energy and increase offshore oil and gas drilling.  It’s baffling that Romney would support exhausting our finite natural resources and destroying our earth instead of investing in alternative energy.

In foreign policy, most of us are looking for a President who will defend Israel. Many have criticized Obama’s relationship with Israel, pointing to lukewarm speeches. But rhetoric aside, by every tangible measure, the Obama Administration has supported Israel’s safety more than his Republican predecessors.

President Obama has provided Israel with $70 million to extend Israel’s Iron Dome rocket defense system.  He’s increased aid to Israel and given the country access to advanced military technology.

And when it comes down to it, even Republicans disagree on what America’s policies toward Israel should be, so not everyone can be satisfied in this equation.  Just because President Obama hasn’t showered Prime Minister Netanyahu with warmth and affection doesn’t mean that he hasn’t supported the country.

For those who don’t believe Obama is doing enough to prevent a nuclear Iran, the contrary is true: he forged an international coalition in the United Nations that implemented the strictest, most comprehensive sanctions Iran has ever faced.  Mitt Romney has not explained how he will prevent a nuclear Iran; the president has declared that he is keeping all options open.

Many Republicans claim that Obama has not accomplished what he should have during his first term, so he isn’t worthy of a second.  But most of what Obama has not been able to recover or accomplish is because the majority of Congress is Republican, and once they took over the House of Representatives, blocked all subsequent efforts to get the economy moving.

If President Obama is reelected, Congress should recognize that the American people have clearly demonstrated their priorities. It would be dishonest and destructive for the Republican House to continue to obfuscate the efforts of the reelected President of the United States.

 

Related editorial: 2 Boiling Points of View: Romney for president, to stop America’s decline

 

 

 

 

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