Romney vs. Obama

By Nicole Valencia, contributing writer

Everyone may not be bouncing off their seats to hit the ballots in November. Yet, one thing is clear, these elections will affect everyone, regardless if they can vote. Below are some hot issues that are a part of the upcoming presidential election. All information used in this article comes from The Huffington Post, The New York Times, barackobama.com and mittromney.com

Obama

Issues that involve women

“I think that it’s terrible to get rid of planned parenthood. It gives more opportunities to people who need birth control, stuff like that. Kids these days are promiscuous, without it, who know what would happen.” Maria Apostolidis, 12th grade

  • Approved the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009, which promotes equal pay for both men and women for the same job. This act makes it easier for women to challenge unequal pay, taking their bosses to court to get the same pay as their male co-workers.
  • Issued a presidential order banning the use of federal funds for abortions as part of the Health Care Bill.
  • Passed the Affordable Care Act, guaranteeing that women will not be denied coverage based on their health or charged higher rates because of their gender
  • With Obamacare, “many insurance plans are beginning to fully cover birth control without co-pays or deductibles as part of women’s preventive care”
  • Has fought back against Republican attempts to defund Planned Parenthood
  •   Planned parenthood is the “largest U.S. provider of reproductive health services, including cancer screening, HIV screening and counseling, contraception, and abortion.

Gay Rights

  • “It is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.” Obama approves of same sex marriage, as he stated in a ABC interview on May 9th 2012

  • “President Obama endorsed the Respect for Marriage Act, signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, and extended hospital visitation and medical decision-making rights to LGBT couples.” (barackobama.com)
  • Banned the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy which allowed the military to kick out openly gay soldiers.

Education

“Both have different approaches. I see Romney has a more business plan decision while Obama is going for the moral. It’s hard to say but with Obama’s plan seeing as how there is so much debt with college students, it would help the economy.” Luca Damasco ,12th grade

  • “I want to make sure everybody understands not everybody has parents who have the money to lend,” Obama said. “You know, that may be news to some folks, but it’s the truth.” (August 21st 2012, Capital University)
  • Is promoting a “Pay As You Earn Plan” which caps monthly federal student loan repayment at 10% of monthly discretionary income, meaning that a responsible student can choose the college they want to attend based on their career goals and not only the price of tuition.
  • Obama gives states flexibility to create their own plan of reform, not restricting them to the No Child Left Behind mandates.

Romney
Issues that Involve Women

” I disagree [with Mitt Romney] he should’ve said a straightforward yes when asked about the Ledbetter act. Women should have equal rights, he should’ve said yes, especially if he wants to female vote.” Marcella Orlando, 9th grade,

  • When asked by The Huffington Post if he would repeal the Lily Ledbetter Act once he entered office, Romney’s aides stated after moments of pause, “We’ll get back to you on that.”
  • Republican Vice President nominee, Paul Ryan opposed the Ledbetter Act when it was being debated in congress in 2009
  • Much later, Andrea Saul, a Romney spokesperson stated that “[Romney], supports pay equity and is not looking to change current law.”
  • Romney has spoken out against abortion and called for overturning Roe vs. Wade, which was a supreme court decision that gives women the right to have an abortion, legally
  • Is in favor of cutting federal support of Planned Parenthood
  • In favor of repealing the Affordable Care Act
  • Believes bosses should decide their employees coverage for birth control and other health services based on their personal beliefs

Education:

“I understand that cuts need to be made but funding for art programs shouldn’t be one of those. Or else how are students supposed to learn the importance of creativity, self-expression and individuality?” ~ Sarah Babadzhanov, 11th grade.

  • Strong supporter of teaching abstinence in schools
  • Increased general funding of charter schools and school voucher programs
  • Supports the No Child Left Behind Act, which started during the Bush administration
  • The NCLB act gives the federal government a more active role in public education through annual testing, academic progress, report cards, teacher qualifications, and funding changes
  • Doesn’t want to subsidize loans for college students
  • “I’m not the one to say that we need to spend more federal money on higher education.”
  • Romney has stated that he wouldn’t promise more federal money to students and families paying for college and not to expect the government to forgive student loan debt
  • Would slash Pell Grant funding, which provides money to pay for college. Which would cut back every  New York student $850 for college.
  • Wants to cut back on government funded arts and cultural programs, like the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities

Romney on Gay Rights:

Chris Petronella
10th grade
In regards to Romney’s view : “I think it’s ridiculous. I’m not gay but it’s their right, their freedom to do what they want. It’s like freedom of religion, it’s what a person wants, not what someone rules they can have.”

  • “I believe we should have a federal amendment in the constitution that defines marriage as a relationship between a man and woman, because I believe the ideal place to raise a child is in a home with a mom and a dad.” (Romney in the Republican Presidential Debate)
  • In favor of recognizing domestic partnerships that include the opportunity for shared health benefits and rights of survivorship.
  • Conclusion: Does not approve same-sex marriage, doesn’t want to impose it on states that have already voted against it
  • Domestic partnership rights should be left to the state to decide, what are the specific rights they are or are not entitled to.
  • Has changed his stance multiple times on gay adoption
  • Recent quote when asked by CNN on gay adoption “I simply acknowledge the fact that gay adoption is legal in all states but one.”
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