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Study of GOP Candidates’ Platforms Finds Romney Proposes Double Gingrich’s Budgetary Savings; Paul’s Blueprint for Cuts Dwarfs Others’ Plans
For Immediate Release April 25, 2012
Douglas Kellogg, (703) 683-5700
Pete Sepp, (703) 683-5700
(Alexandria, VA) – Mitt Romney’s spending cut agenda is twice as large as Newt Gingrich’s, while Ron Paul proposes double the reductions of his nearest challenger. Those are just some of the key findings of the National Taxpayers Union Foundation’s (NTUF’s) in-depth, line-by-line analysis of the 2012 GOP contenders’ federal budget proposals. NTUF has conducted studies of Presidential and Senatorial candidates’ fiscal policy platforms for more than a decade.
According to NTUF, GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney’s platform would reduce federal outlays by a net of $353.0 billion annually, Newt Gingrich’s extensive policy plans would shed $146.2 billion from the budget, and Rick Santorum had $670.6 billion in cuts on his radar prior to ending his campaign. Ron Paul seeks $1.2 trillion in yearly net reductions.
“Although each of the Republican Presidential candidates attempted to stress ideological differences with each other, all agreed that Washington had to spend less money. But the issue is, how much less?” said NTUF Director of Congressional Analysis Jeff Dircksen. “Americans seeking more than just rhetoric from White House hopefuls will find some hard numbers in NTUF’s reports. Not surprisingly, however, they will also find a great many unknowns due to the lack of specificity from the candidates themselves about their plans.”
NTUF analyzes all of the candidates’ key proposals outlined on their websites, in their official campaign documents, and touted in speeches. By referencing these plans with equivalent bills in Congress, items in the federal budget, and a variety of other cost sources, NTUF builds a comprehensive picture of the bottom line impact of the candidates’ budget-focused proposals. Some cost estimates are based on NTUF’s BillTally system, which since 1991 has served as a resource on thousands of pieces of legislation introduced each year that could affect federal expenditures.
All told, NTUF identified 151 proposals among the four Republican Presidential office seekers with a potential impact on annual federal outlays. Ninety-four of those impacts could not be accurately determined, generally because the candidates failed to provide sufficient detail to pinpoint a cost.
Key findings include:
“The field of candidates has often changed over the past year, but their ideas for federal spending and savings will continue to be debated as the campaign season evolves,” Dircksen concluded. “Through it all, NTUF will be monitoring the candidates’ proposals – including those of President Obama – to inform the vital national conversation about the future direction of Washington’s fiscal policy.”
Note: The detailed NTUF analyses of Mitt Romney’s Newt Gingrich’s, Ron Paul’s and Rick Santorum’s federal budget policy platforms are available online at www.ntu.org.