KC Star: Obama’s reasoned, compassionate and forward-looking ideas

President Obama’s policies have “helped the middle class and kept a deep recession from becoming worse. He repaired America’s reputation in the world. And he got important legislation passed.For that, the nation is better,” says the Kansas City Star in its endorsement of President Obama for a second term in office.

As evidence, the editorial includes a list of the President’s top first-term accomplishments:

  • Ended the war in Iraq.
  • Is on track to responsibly bring troops home from the war in Afghanistan, following the killing of America’s top enemy, Osama bin Laden.
  • Pushed through tax cuts for the middle class.
  • Signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to better protect women from discrimination.
  • Ended “don’t ask, don’t tell,” allowing gays and lesbians to serve without prejudice in the military.
  • Created the Consumer Financial Protection bureau, which has successfully led to new safeguards.
  • Sparked efforts to improve education and expand and lighten the cost of student college loans.
  • Boosted the fuel economy standards for cars.
  • Signed the Affordable Care Act, his signature achievement so far that will give Americans access to insurance, regardless of pre-existing conditions and without limits.

As to Mitt Romney, the Star says that it couldn’t endorse him because, “We have no clue which Romney he would become as president,” and goes on to enumerate the many issues on which Romney has changed positions during his career and during the presidential campaign. “In too many ways, Romney resembles a slick salesman, willing to fudge and say anything to close the deal,” adds the Star.

In addition,

Romney’s comment in a private donor setting — belittling the 47 percent who don’t pay income taxes as freeloaders — is damning and hard-to-shake evidence that he may not really care so much about many Americans of lesser portfolios.

And it’s immensely troubling that Romney’s tax plans don’t add up. His wish to lower all tax rates, without specifying how he’d counter the revenue loss with elimination of deductions and loopholes, is not acceptable. Will home mortgage and charitable deductions get the boot? Or will he eventually try to sell his fluctuating “cap” on the total dollar amount of deductions, which in some iterations wouldn’t make a dent in the debt?

Romney’s abortion ideas and general views on women (no comment on pay equity) are troubling. There is a real risk his Supreme Court appointments would be anti-abortion, and women’s private health decisions could be dangerously restricted.

Bottom line:

We look ahead to four more years of Obama’s reasoned, compassionate and forward-looking ideas on good jobs, fair taxes and better education to meet the global competition.