Saturday, May 18 2013 12:02 AM EDT2013-05-18 04:02:20 GMT
The Charlotte Bobcats are in the process of changing their name to "Hornets," a source with knowledge of the situation told CBSSports.com's Will Brinson, including arranging digital assets that wouldMore >>
The Charlotte Bobcats are in the process of changing their name to "Hornets," a source with knowledge of the situation told CBSSports.com's Will Brinson, including arranging digital assets that would allow a return to their original nickname.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 4:48 AM EDT2013-05-18 08:48:42 GMT
The University City Division along with the Major Crash Investigation Unit hosted a DWI Checking Station Friday night until Saturday morning. The location was between the 400 and 700 blocks of W. MallardMore >>
The University City Division along with the Major Crash Investigation Unit hosted a DWI Checking Station Friday night until Saturday morning.More >>
A 16-year-old girl making her first solo drive died when her vehicle slammed into a semi. Sources tell KCTV5 that she was texting at the time of the crash.More >>
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -
We are getting more examples of just how important North Carolina's 15 electoral votes are this fall. President Obama is hosting the Democratic National Convention Labor Day Week, while his Republican opponent Mitt Romney is staying very visible as well.
The former Massachusetts governor has visited the Charlotte area twice in the last week and today he sat down for an interview with WBTV's Jamie Boll. Here's a complete transcript of the interview.
WBTV: The debate over the past 48 - 72 hours has been over Medicare. You've accused the President of raiding $700 billion from the program. You're running mate Paul Ryan's budget, called for the virtually the same slow down in spending over the next several years. Would you keep the money in the Medicare budget?
Mitt Romney: "Yeah, I'd take the $700 billion President Obama took out of Medicare and I'd put it back in. Look, seniors have been paying for Medicare by deductions through their wages for years, all their lives in fact, taking that money out of the Medicare trust fund is the wrong thing to do. I'd put it back and by the way the implications of not putting it back are pretty severe. The medicare trustees this morning just came out with a report and said under the president's plan cutting $700 billion from Medicare, some 4 million seniors, will lose their Medicare Advantage plan, the one that they have chosen. This is a benefit which deserves to be restored. I'd put that money back."
WBTV: So how do you save the program? Is their means testing? Does the eligibility age go up?
Mitt Romney: "Well, first of all for current seniors for those that are 55 years of age and older my plan makes no change whatsoever. It's the President's plan that cuts $700 billion from that and causes 4 million seniors to be dropped from Medicare Advantage. So, that's the President's plan. Then the question is what about the coming generations plan what are they going to have? In the coming generations plan, my proposal is that higher income people will get less financial support than low income people. I want to help those that really need the help and that's how we make sure Medicare stays solvent for the coming generation. But for current seniors no change.
WBTV: "Does the (eligibility) age go up?"
Mitt Romney: "The age on Medicare is at 67 right now. What will happen is that over time it will adjust with the life expectancy of individuals and that also obviously makes sure that we don't see a change in the demands on Medicare based on a lengthening of life expectancy."
WBTV: "You've been running an ad here in Charlotte, saying the President is gutting welfare reform? Eliminated welfare to work. Independent fact checkers have said the attack is not true, do you stand by the ad, will it continue to run?"
Mitt Romney: "Well, actually Richmond papers just yesterday ran an editorial saying it's absolutely gutting welfare reform. There was a provision in the welfare reform act that said you cannot waive the work requirements, but the Obama administration has found a way to do it by taking another section of the act and saying you can change your definition of work. I oppose that. I want to put work back in welfare. I believe work is an essential part of welfare reform. Do not remove that work requirement and I think it's a big mistake on the president's part. He tried to sneak it through and you've seen conservatives across the country as well as editorials like that in the Richmond paper point out that this guts welfare reform as we know it.
WBTV: Lets talk debt and deficits. Can you hit reduction goals through budget cuts alone?
Mitt Romney: "No, you have to get growth as well. The only way to get to a balanced budget is to put in place pro-growth policies which encourage investment and job creators, more hiring, higher wages all those things help create more revenue. At the same time you got to cut out some programs that we just don't need. One of those by the way is Obamacare. It's a hundred billion dollars a year spending. We have to remove Obamacare. We simply can't afford to pass on massive burdens to the coming generation. I think it's not only bad economics I think it's immoral.
WBTV: You've talked about closing loopholes, does that mean eliminating deductions? Some of the popular ones perhaps like the mortgage deduction, or the charitable giving deduction?
Mitt Romney: "No, I've indicated for middle income people there will have to of course continue to recognize the importance of those deductions. For higher income people I think some of those deductions will be limited in order to keep the progressivity in the code. I want to bring the code rates, the tax rates, down and simplify our tax structure, but a lot of the deductions and exemptions and loopholes and so forth all the special deals that come along I think for people at the high end we're going to have to eliminate those things, or excuse me limit those things, so we can make sure and keep the top earners paying the same share, at least, as they pay today."
WBTV: Governor, the tenor of this campaign has certainly been ugly how do you turn that around, how can we get back to talking about the issues that are important to Americans?
Mitt Romney:"You know I'm very proud of the fact that my campaign that when we go after the President's policies, it's policies we're going after and his track record. That is the nature of a legitimate and appropriate campaign about the future direction of the country. The president's ads and the ads of those who support him have been highly divisive for the American people . They've been attacking on a personal basis I think they demean the White House. The ads that have come out I think bring the White House just a bit lower. I think the Vice President's comments likewise have been unfortunate. I think its appropriate for us to have a debate about the issues to go back and forth on those things is the way we expect to have a campaign, but these personal attacks I think are just poorly founded and I think are quite troubling.