The 2012 election campaign is about to be over, and a few days are only remaining till the actual voting takes place. The nation is about to get its new President, and the reasons for this choice will be based on the reflections of people’s opinions on the candidates’ statements regarding the most important social, economic and cultural issues. The most essential ones are health care, cost of higher education and the cost of wars where the US Army is involved.
Current elections allowed the candidates to present their opinions regarding numerous issues of national importance, with health care being one of the most discussed ones. Current President Obama holds his position firm on preserving the status of Medicare, the program for supporting elderly people’s needs. Starting mid-August, Obama keeps bringing more and more promises to save the program at its current state and do not allow the republicans to influence it in any way, especially changing the way it works and making senior citizens lack safety because of this. Obama says "I'm willing to work with anyone to keep improving the current system, but I refuse to do anything that undermines the basic idea of Medicare as a guarantee for seniors who get sick”. At the same time he relies on his personal experience, making the accent on the fact he is well aware of the support Medicare program gives to the elderly people. He learns this from his grandparents, benefitting from both Medicare and Social Security. Obamacare is a development current President uses as an example of solving the health care related issues. Obama believes “Proves I do care” is a perfect motto for his election campaign, as its main accent is put on healthcare.
Romney tries to make health care plans for the US different from those offered by Obama, especially to contradict the Obamacare. However, this potentially leads to an overall loss for the Americans. While Obamacare leaves some 27 million people without medical insurance, Ronmey’s program would become inaccessible to over 72 million people. Experts believe such big distinction in numbers can be explained by a few factors. One of them is almost twice the price of the insurance, either regular or premium, for the Americans in Romney’s plan compared to Obamacare, which automatically eliminates a great number of people who simply cannot afford it. Romney’s health care plan has some contradictions, as the promised lowering of costs for insurance, but its actual rise due to the need to pay for the basics that usually go for free. Romney relies on his running mate Ryan and basically lets him lead the part of the election campaign, related to the health care matters. While Obama accused Romney of trying to bring Medicare to an end, Romney throws an accusation that Obamacare plan took away over $700 billion of Medicare.
Another important issue, raised at the current elections, is the cost for tuition during the study at higher educational establishments, i.e. college or university. Mitt Romney is criticized for the inconsistencies in his plan for the development of higher education. Cynthia G. Brown from the Centre for American Progress Action Fund believes Romney has to revise the draft he has and come up with a final version that would satisfy American students and voters in general. Romney’s program would allows all students to be able to attend any public or private schools within their state due to the use of special vouchers. He also plans to invest in the charter schools, cancel the requirements for the teachers to have state certificates to be able to work within certain state. Romney’s reforms would also change the approach to awarding the teachers with special bonuses; this will be made by means of tracing the performance of the students, and paying for the effectiveness of teacher’s and principal’s work with those students. Romney and his running mate Ryan support mismatching votes, as the cut of funding for the Pell grants, awarded to the students from low-income families, thus allowing fewer students to be able to earn a degree. Many of their education ideas reflect in one way or another Obama’s mottos and ideas.
Obama was greatly supported by young voters back in 2008. Being a more experienced politician, he believes that Romney’s ideas for the higher education development are restricting potential students from the opportunity to educate themselves, making them either look for the offers with lower prices or borrow money from their parents to be able to study in college. Obama said “That’s his plan. That’s his answer to young people who are trying to figure out how to go to college and make sure that they don’t have a mountain of debt” (Associated Press). He also disagrees with Romney’s accusations that during the last Presidential term cost of education went up, and alumni cannot find any jobs. Obama argues that Romney tries to take away the chance from 1 million of students to go to college by cutting the budget spending on the higher education. Obama emphasizes the inconsistency of the idea of making the students take loans for education instead of allowing them to earn grants. Ronmey’s proponents argue that his budget will not affect Pell grant students too much, and that it will be taking place step by step, not all at once.
Government spends more and more money on wars outside the US. Currently the biggest spenders remaining are still Iraq and Afghanistan, in spite of the fact the war in Iraq is over. The overall expenses are measured in billions of dollars, and the numbers are constantly going up. This matter of national security is an important part of the election process, as both candidates have their opinions about it, but neither of them made it the number one concern for their campaigns.
Obama is the one who wills to reduce the spending on the defense more, and he already introduced a plan for that over the ten-year period. A practical way for this is hidden behind ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and pulling out the army of these countries. During the third round of debates, Obama claimed America is on its way to completely leaving of Afghanistan by the US troops. Obama explains this is done to allow local authorities rule their country, while the United States will obviously be supervising all the activities. Obama plans to leave Afghanistan and renew political relations with certain countries to ensure political stability of the country.
Romney was the first republican candidate to avoid mentioning the war, specifically the war in Afghanistan, during his convention speech, but he reacted to the one made by Obama. This may be explained by the lack of support of the society of the war in Afghanistan. Greater accent is made on economy, and potential effects of pulling out the troops.
The effect of pulling out the troops from Afghanistan is obvious – billions of dollars, spent annually by the Ministry of Defense, can be used for the needs of Americans. Money, saved in such way, could cover the cost of more Pell grants for those in need for support from the government. Special health care policies also need good funding to take care of the injured during the wars, and supporting the veterans in general. Thus the economy would only benefit from pulling out from Afghanistan and redirecting the money to other economic and social issues, requiring extra expenses on behalf of the government.