President Obama at a campaign event in Boone, Iowa on August 13, 2012:
President Obama: Over the weekend my opponent chose as running mate the ideological leader of the Republicans in Congress. And, I’ve gotten to know Congressman Ryan, he’s a good man, he’s a family man. He’s a very articulate spokesperson for Governor Romney’s vision. The problem is, it’s the wrong vision for America. [applause] It’s a vision that I fundamentally disagree with.
Their main recipe for solving America’s problems is getting rid of regulations on big corporations, big banks, and then giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans. And their theory is that somehow that’s gonna lead to jobs and prosperity for everybody. In fact, the centerpiece of Governor Romney’s entire economic plan is a new five trillion dollar tax cut, a lot of it going to the wealthiest Americans. Now, keep in mind these are the folks who say the deficit and the debt are the biggest problem we’ve got. And yet they now want to give a five trillion dollar tax cut.
I know these numbers get so big, but I just want you to get a sense, our entire defense budget annually is five hundred billion dollars. So, what this means is, a five trillion dollar tax break over ten years. that’s the equivalent of the entire defense budget going out as a tax cut every single year. Now keep in mind that this is going disproportionally to the wealthiest Americans.
Last week we found out that Governor Romney expects you, middle class families, to pick up the tab for this big tax cut. [voices: “No.”] No, and, and please don’t take my word for it. You can go to their web sites and look at their plan. And then independent economists have looked at this thing and they said that Governor Romney’s tax plan would actually raise taxes on middle class families with children by an average of two thousand dollars. [voices: “No.”] Now, keep in, keep in mind this is not two thousand dollars to reduce the deficit or to grow jobs or to invest in education or make college more affordable or to rebuild our roads. This is two thousand dollars to give another two hundred and fifty thousand dollar tax cut to people making more than three million dollars a year.
Now let, let me just see, see a show of hands, how many folks are making, uh, more than three million dollars a year? [laughter] Okay, this guy back here, while. [laughter] I’m looking for a campaign contribution. [laughter, applause] The, uh. [cheers]
Let, let, let, let me tell you something. Uh, they have tried to sell us this trickle down fairy dust before [laughter] [voice: “It don’t work.”] And it did not work then, it won’t work now. [voice: “You’re right, man.”] It’s not a plan to create jobs, it’s not a plan to cut the deficit and it’s not a plan to move our economy forward. We don’t need more tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. We don’t need a tax cut for Mr. Romney. We don’t need a tax cut for me. [applause] We need tax relief for middle class families who are out there [applause, cheers] working to make sure that their kids are healthy and their kids can go to college. That’s, that’s the choice in this election. [applause, cheers]
It’s destined to become one of the great quotes in American politics.