CPAC – Mitt Romney
His pitch, like that of most candidates, is very high level and platitudinous: Cut government spending, change the culture of Washington, increase efficiency, reach across the aisle, and so forth.
I asked him how exactly he planned to do these things. He said that he’d use the threat of the veto to force Congress to work with him. Asked what he would cut, he said he would have a commission look at efficiency cuts and that he’d peg non-defense discretionary spending at one percent below inflation and that doing this would save $300 billion over ten years. I noted that $30 billion a year amounts to a rounding error in the federal budget but he said it would add up.
Ultimately, Romney is quite polished and reasonably charismatic. Like the other major candidates–and unlike the man they’re seeking to succeed–he’s an excellent public speaker.
Thus far, though, he’s not willing to be pinned down on controversial public policy matters. I can’t say that I blame him.