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Should the United States fund the service program AmeriCorps? President Obama would increase its budget. Rep. Paul Ryan would eliminate federal funding for the program.

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Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 06/18/2012

Friday question answered

Both presidential candidates seem eager to present the voters with a choice of visions.When asked who benefits the most, partisans for each candidate naturally chose their man. But more interesting were those would pled for more specificity.

Cliffc1 writs, in part: “My vote would be for Neither. Right now, I’m wishing for a third party, and don’t think it’s the tea party. They had their chance and blew it. Neither candidate can resolve the country’s problems. Both spew misleading and distorted viewpoints and both severely lack any real ability to do more than the other.”

Newshound11 writes: “Whether Romney can articulate a clear, conservative, and politically resonant alternative — a la Reagan — is still an open question. If he can, he’ll win big. . . . He isn’t adequately armed for such a debate, because in his heart of hearts, Romney does not hold a political vision anchored in conservative principles as Reagan did. He’s a deal maker, and you can’t cut a deal to win a debate. So the answer to this Friday question is: Nobody on God’s green earth can possibly know which candidate will benefit from the two-visions comparison.”

Levi12 picks Mitt Romney, but wants more meat on the bones: “Neither candidate has stated a clear vision for our country since the 2012 election race began. However, with each speech that President Obama has made in the past two months, his vision has become murkier. Mitt Romney has become increasingly more focused and targeted with his message. . . .The question of a credible new vision is moot because the President doesn’t appear to have anything new to put on the table. In a side by side comparison, it is Romney who benefits by framing the election as a choice between visions, although there is considerable improvement he can make to the communication of that vision.”

On this one, Songster hits the nail on the head:

It could seem that Obama benefits by a comparison in some ways because a talk about ‘visions’ lets him attempt to get back to the vague sort of rhetoric he wielded so successfully in 2008 — ‘still about hope, still about change’. . . . .Romney may not be perfect, but he has done a lot in his life, and has been successful by any measure in each endeavor. When he talks about a better America, smarter, smaller, simpler government, etc. — people can really hope that he will deliver like he has in the past. By comparison when Obama talks about moving ‘Forward’ after years of being the president, people are left wondering, ‘from what? — from you?’

Romney has hit upon the comparison of a government-centric society vs. an opportunity society. But judging from many of the responses, he needs to hit this theme again and again comparing high vs. low taxes, frenetic regulations vs. reasonable regulations, and an ever-expanding welfare state vs. limited government. He’d be smart to take up the theme articulated by readers like jbb34, who argues that “Obama’s vision is to turn us into a European state with government dominating every sector in the economy. How is that working in Europe?. . .[I]n Europe the continent is imploding and this is Obama’s model.” Indeed.

By  |  12:00 PM ET, 06/18/2012

Categories:  2012 campaign, Friday question

 
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