The 5 R’s: A Political Breakdown Of Round 2 Of The Presidential Debates


As they say on Sesame Street, today’s post is being brought to you by the letter “R.”

R is for the song that comes to mind when watching the debate last night: “R-E-S-P-E-C-T.” I am sure the Aretha Franklin classic rang familiar when many Americans tuned in last night for the second Presidential Debate. Clearly this is a track not found on Romney’s playlist. The lack of respect that was shown to the President of the United States of America was troubling. No matter how you feel about his policies, ideals, or outcomes, the office must still be respected. As voters, we have the power to choose who represents us not just domestically but on the international stage as well. Do we want another president that will be bullish and aggressive to other world leaders? We have already been down that road before and we saw where that led us; two wars (one unnecessary), diminishing of the American brand globally, lack of global cooperation and disruption on our global economic impact.

R is for the resistance of Romney to demonstrate how he will pay for his five trillion dollar tax plan. Now let’s be clear. This isn’t a matter of supporting the increase or lowering of taxes, but rather allowing the American people to decide which is better. This goes to character and trust. How do you, Mr. Romney, expect us to understand how you will govern if there are no fundamentals for us to consider? Here is what’s at issue with taxes: Think of taxes as your school fundraiser. You have a Saturday afternoon car wash to fund the schools’ books, supplies, or senior prom. If it decides to rain that Saturday, there is no car wash, tell me than what we will do to make up for lost revenue? This is the exact scenario with Romney and the federal government. Romney is cutting trillion of taxes (car wash is cancelled due to rain) but won’t tell us how we will make up for the loss (what’s the new idea/rain date?).

R is for the regressive tone that Romney set last night to women everywhere. His inability to relate to women was evident by the phrase “a binder full of women” when discussing resumes received for job posting. The notion under his presidency is “corporate America will be anxious to hire women.” Really? Is that your position, Mitt? Well I hope with all their anxiety, they will still continue to pay equal wage, as mandated by President Obama’s Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, which you have yet to express your opinion on.

R is for the right for every immigrant to have a chance at the American dream of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” I wonder Mr. Romney, what is your dream as you don’t support the Dream Act? As of now, you believe in “self-deportation” (huh?) and co-sign the controversial Arizona Immigration Law that supports racial profiling that targets illegal immigrants. America was built on immigration. It’s what makes us so great! There is power in diversity. Ideals grow stronger when there are various opinions. Who are we to close the borders?

R is for righting the wrong of imbalanced notions and unfounded policies. Last night presented a clear winner in the debate but who is better at being transparent about the country’s future? Even if we’re unsure how we will get there together, at least I know which direction you are trying to lead us…and that is “F” for forward. Congratulations Mr. President on a job well done last night.

Mike Muse can be reached at [email protected], and on twitter @iammikemuse.