Former Gov. Buddy Roemer
Announcement of Candidacy
Hanover Inn at Dartmouth College
Hanover, NH
Thursday, July 21, 2011

[Prepared Remarks]

Today, I run for President of the United States of America.

I run to prepare America for job growth, beginning with the elimination unfair trade practices and the abuse of our tax code that ships U.S. jobs overseas.

I run to reveal the control that special interests have over our nation's Capitol and to demonstrate the freedom that only comes from refusing their money.

I run as a proud Republican, but an even prouder American. I believe in America, its values, its future.

We are a nation at risk, but neither the President nor any of the other candidates for the office are addressing or offering solution to the major problems facing our country.
The first is unfair trade which is stealing our best jobs and stopping economic growth. This has resulted in a growing mountain of debt that we have to borrow to attempt to maintain our standard of living. Yet, no one has mentioned unfair trade or offered a solution.

The second unmentioned problem are special interest campaign donations which own Washington, DC, turning it into a corrupt institution where fat cat special interest checks write the tax code, write healthcare reform, and write bank reform.

Corporate profits are at an all-time high while these very same corporations send American jobs overseas, causing fear and pain in the families of millions of Americans. The guys with the big checks don't want reform or change 'cause they've never had it so good.

That's the reason why no one running for President talks about solving either problem – whether it's unfair trade that is stealing our best jobs or the institutional corruption of Washington, DC – they need the money to run.

I run for President and am not accepting any PAC or special interest money, any contributions over $100 per person, and I am remain committed to full disclosure.

We must break the stranglehold of special interests over the tax code, the budget, the debt, Wall Street reform and healthcare reform.

There is only one way to take back control of our country from the special interests - don't take their PAC money, their bundled money, their access money. A President must be free to lead, free to challenge special interests and free to change Washington, D.C.

And our current President? He is raising $1 billion while in office – much of it coming from the very Wall Street corporations and individuals he is supposed to regulate. The price tag? $35,000 a ticket and yet 'too big to fail' is still on the books.

Manufacturing now accounts for fewer than 10% of jobs in America. 'Made in America' has disappeared. Unemployed and underemployed seem permanently over 20%. We have fewer jobs and the one that are left pay less. China is having the greatest economic boom in history and we are paying for it.

We need trading jobs, but the trade must be fair or both nations suffer. Unfair trade uses child labor, prison labor, work without standards and without environmental scorecards, and pirates designs and products and plants in their countries.

These unfair practices have cost us millions of our best jobs over the past 20 years – causing pain and angst in families across America. Our leaders have done nothing but talk about the wonders of free trade. So-called 'free trade' has killed us. Trade must be fair.

American Presidents, starting with George Washington, have protected American manufacturing jobs from predatory trading practices for over 160 years. This is not a radical idea, it's what built America. It worked after WWII for Germany and Japan. Now, Germany is the largest economy in Europe and Japan number two in the world.

We must protect our best jobs from unfair trade practices and from U.S. companies who move jobs overseas using our own tax code to pay for it. They are free to go, but we will not pay for it.

And we can protect our critical jobs without the general use of tariffs, which, although successful, tend to be overly political in their formulation and application.

As a first step, I would amend the tax code to disallow a tax deduction for any expenditure for any goods produced, or services located outside the U.S. We could call this the 'call-center fix'. Companies can do it, but we taxpayers just aren't going to pay for it.

Next, I would eliminate the foreign tax credit loophole whereby huge corporations and wealthy individuals avoid paying taxes by moving their business and investments out of the country.

They are afforded the protections guaranteed to all U.S. citizens, but don't pay their fair share of tax for that privilege. Example #1 is GE, which made $5 billion in profit last year and paid zero income tax.

Finally, I would require a fair trade adjustment form to accompany imports. This form would show the economic difference necessary to bring the imports' manufacturing process up to minimum American standards. This difference will be paid by the importer as would the cost of the adjustment analysis.

Unfair trading nations will lose their unwarranted advantage. The fair competitor will suffer no ill effect. Trade will grow, but it will be fair.

These few changes would efficiently generate millions of American jobs, restoring needed growth in our lagging economy.

We need to deregulate small businesses so they can grow again.

We need to be energy independent and create a million new jobs.

We need to reduce Federal spending by 1% of GDP a year for 5 years.

We need immigration reform that seals the borders, but allows legal immigration.

We need tax reform that lowers the marginal rate with simplicity.

There is much we need to do, but the place to start is with special interest money and unfair trade – and no one is speaking of it.

We must break the stranglehold of special interest money on our political system so that we can address the hole in the economy caused by unfair trade through which our best jobs are disappearing. We must seal the hole and restore manufacturing jobs. This growth is essential to paying off the debt and getting us out of this financial trap in which we find ourselves. It is the special interests who use unfair trade and self-written tax loopholes to make their fortunes and steal our futures.

$100 limit. No PAC money. Full disclosure. Free to lead is the key. No other candidate can solve these two problems because they need their money.

All I need is you. 5 million Americans out of 310 million can make this happen. Stand with me on - you don't want to miss this campaign!

I am no one. A former Governor, a former Congressman, a successful community banker who returns to politics after 16 years in happy private life, in order to confront the institutional corruption of Washington, DC and the loss of our manufacturing base so critical to national defense and to the economic health of our great country.

A loss that stems in large part from the unfair trading practices by some nations and the deliberate manipulation of our tax code by some multinational corporations. I am no one, but I challenge a corrupt system. And at 67 I am old enough to know what to do, and young enough to get it done.

These are times that require bold action and fierce determination. I will do my part, but I have deliberately chosen a path requiring the help of many because that is the way to win and to get these mighty things done after the election. Stand with me against the special interests. Spread the word!

Even with the obvious failure of government to confront unfair trade practices and make America strong, the boys at the top are living so well they've forgotten the rest of America. I have not.

I ask the 98% of Americans who do not currently give to a political candidate to stand with me. Together we can restore America's promise to our children and grandchildren.

Free to lead a rising America.

We start today in New Hampshire where the state motto is “Live Free or Die”. It's a good beginning.

May God bless America, and each and every one of you.

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