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Massachusetts Democrats visit Iowa, rip Romney record

James Q. Lynch, CR Gazette –

Cory Atkins hates it when Republicans don’t act like Republicans, so the Democratic Massachusetts state representative was disappointed when Gov. Mitt Romney failed to deliver on his campaign promises – the same promises he’s making as a presidential candidate — she said at a campaign stop in Cedar Rapids Monday.

“When Gov. Romney first ran, I thought, ‘Well, we can make lemonade out of these lemons,’” Atkins said, thinking Romney could translate his business acumen into turning around Massachusetts’ post 9-11 economy. “I thought he would bring in an A-Team from his colleagues at Bain and we’ll get this show on the road.”

However, rather than deliver on promises for more jobs, less debt and smaller government, Romney left the state with a $1 billion deficit and $2.6 billion in debt, said State Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez, a Boston Democrat. Massachusetts was 47th out of 50 in job creation and taxpayers were left with more debt per person than in any other state.

“He paid for state operations on the state credit card,” he said. “That’s not the way to run a state.”

“Even Democrats know we don’t do that,” Atkins added.

Romney may be “great at leveraged buyouts, but he’s not a leader for the people,” Sanchez said.

The appearance by Sanchez and Atkins was part of an effort by the Obama re-election campaign to portray Romney as weak on job creation and draw negative attention to the presumptive GOP nominee.

Atkins and Sanchez spared no criticism of Romney, who served as governor from 2003-07. He was a “no-show” governor with a “closed-door” policy that isolated him from lawmakers and citizens and was unapproachable because walked around like a “dictator” surrounded by bodyguards.

They described him as someone with limited perspective of how government impacts the lives of ordinary people.

Romney kept his campaign promise not to raise taxes, Sanchez conceded, but he raised fees on everything, including birth certificates and marriage licenses.

“He didn’t raise taxes on the 270 wealthiest individuals,” but he increased the “hidden tax” of fees on all residents, Sanchez said, adding that Romney “doesn’t understand the proportional impact on ordinary citizens.”

In addition, Romney cut support for education, which in a brainpower state like Massachusetts is the equivalent of Iowa telling farmers they can farm only half of their land, Atkins said.

“He wasn’t a great job creator,” she said. Massachusetts, where health care, education and finance are key industries, experienced slower job growth than most of the nation.

“He talked a good game,” Sanchez said, “but there was no follow through.”

Also Monday, the Obama campaign released a television advertisement, “Heard it Before,” highlighting Romney’s economic record as governor and how he wants to bring that same economic philosophy to the White House.

To see the ad, click here.

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