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On Substantive Policy Matters, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney Hardly Differ

by Conor Murphy, published

This year's upcoming presidential election has demonstrated the sad state of affairs that the United States finds itself in. While Barack Obama and Mitt Romney may treat each other as polar opposites, they might have more in common with each other than any other presidential candidates in this country's history. Romney and Obama may have very different rhetoric, but their policies are almost indistinguishable. This may be unbelievable to some, but when one examines the facts, it is undeniable.

Barack Obama claims to be against big corporations, yet his policies show us a very different picture. His healthcare bill was a provision to keep the healthcare industry monopolized and make it more expensive. Romney may deny it, but his Massachusetts healthcare plan was the blueprint for "ObamacCare." Not exactly the perfect example of small government.

Speaking of small government, Romney says he supports it. This might be believable if he did not express public support for the USA Patriot Act or the National Defense Authorization Act. These two pieces of legislation are the biggest encroachments on our civil liberties this country has seen in recent history, and yet they are also supported by President Obama, a so-called defender of civil liberties and reformer of the excesses of the Bush era national security state.

All throughout the last presidential election, Obama was considered the anti-war candidate. Ironically, he authorized the US military support of the intervention in Libya, increased the amount of troops in Afghanistan, stalled on bringing home troops from Iraq for over two and a half years, and seems to be supportive of intervention in Syria. Not only was this also supported by Governor Romney, but he also expressed support for the war in Iraq, and aggression against Iran. One must conclude that neither of these men are anti-war.

Neither Mitt Romney or Barack Obama have even attempted to start a discussion about the Federal Reserve and its policy of printing more money and keeping interest rates low. With the state of the economy still in jeopardy, this is simply irresponsible.

Increased spending has been rightly identified by Mitt Romney as one of the greatest failures of the Obama Administration. Romney's plan, however, might actually increase spending to an even higher level than the Obama Administration, especially in certain areas like defense, where Romney wants to spend an additional $2 trillion over the next ten years. The inconsistency is simply stunning.

Whoever wins, in 2013, we will have a president who will borrow and spend even more money than the current administration. Our president will believe that it is appropriate for the government to assassinate American citizens without a trial who are simply accused of being potential threats to this country. Congress will become even more ineffective as either one of our potential presidents will not believe in obtaining congressional authority to go to war. The Federal Reserve will have at least four more years of support from whichever administration wins the White House. This is what we have to look forward to over the next four years, and it isn't pretty.

There is almost no substantial difference between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. What we have here is a dangerous situation: an election between two major party candidates where either choice will lead us further down the path to public policy disaster. How can America call itself the land of the free when Americans only have a choice between the status quo with an "R" next to it and the status quo with a "D" next to it?

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