In a speech in Iowa Friday afternoon, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney outlined his agenda to revitalize the American economy and slammed President Barack Obama’s campaign and leadership.
"The President’s campaign falls far short of the magnitude of these times," Romney said.
Romney said his "campaign is about big things," and "America wants to see big changes."
He spoke outdoors in a light breeze while wearing a black workers jacket over a white shirt and red tie. A large American flag was draped in the background.
"This is an election about America," Romney said.
Romney attacked Obama for making his campaign about "small, shiny objects." He noted that while the President ran on a platform of "post-partisanship," he has been a very partisan president, and "Washington is in gridlock because of it."
"He did not reach across the aisle to bring us together," Romney said.
Pivoting toward the economy, Romney said that while Obama did inherit a troubled economy, he "also inherited the greatest nation in the history of the earth."
"What he did with what he inherited made the problem worse," Romney said. The problem with the economy is "the misguided policies that have slowed the recovery."
Romney called today’s economic news, which reported economic growth slightly up, as the "latest round of discouraging economic news," noting that after passing the stimulus the president promised to have the economy growing at twice the rate it is.
"Americans are ready for change," Romney said.
Romney outlined his plan for revitalizing the economy and promised 12 million new jobs in his first term.
He promised to work toward a balanced federal budget, in part by shrinking the bureaucracy in Washington and sending programs down to be run by the states.
He pledged to make North America energy independent by 2020 by ending "the Obama war on coal, the disdain for oil, and the effort to crimp natural gas by federal regulation of the very technology that produces it."
Romney promised to "make trade work for America" and make "America the best possible place" for business, and said he wants to "make sure that our citizens have the skills to succeed" by ensuring training programs and a strong education system.
Romney emphasized his bipartisan credentials, as he governed a state with a "legislature that was 85 percent Democrat."
"Good Democrats can come together with good Republicans to solve big problems," he said, reflecting on his tenure as governor of Massachusetts.
"What we need is leadership," he said.
"If we seize the moment and rise to the occasion, the century ahead will be an American century," Romney said.