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Latina Lista: News from the Latino perspective > Media > Transcripts > Transcript: Univision ‘s “Meet the Candidate” forum with Mitt Romney

Transcript: Univision ‘s “Meet the Candidate” forum with Mitt Romney

September 19, 2012

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney participates in a Univision “Meet the Candidates” forum with Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas in Miami, Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) (AP2012)

Key

JR: Jorge Ramos
MS: Maria Elena Salinas
MR: Mitt Romney
AM: Audience Member

Intro:
The United States will elect a new president in 48 days, and once again Hispanic voters will be decisive in this election. Today, the Republican Candidate will address you directly about education and its future in this great meeting with Governor Mitt Romney. From the University of Miami, I now give you Maria Elena Salinas and Jorge Ramos.

MS:
Good evening and welcome to the BankUnited Center of the University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida. Tonight we’re going to make history.

JR:
Thank you. We’re making history together. Thank you for being here with us. During the next two days, we are meeting with the candidates for President of the United States. We’re going to talk about education and its future. We’re going to have the first one today with the Republican Candidate, Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney. And tomorrow we’re going to have the second one with President Barack Obama.

MS:
They’re not forums, not debates. Just conversations with them. We have Facebook with us during this special event.

JR:
Our audience here is made up of Republican students from the University of Miami.

MS.
And the same concept will apply with President Obama tomorrow. This program will be transmitted on Univision.com and the Univision Noticias Facebook page in English.

JR:
Hispanics — we have a young community. And for young people, education is very important. The future of the country is in their hands. And they’re going to have a decisive role in the next election. We are the minority that is growing the fastest and that’s why it’s so important for each candidate to talk directly to the Hispanic community in meetings like this one … the one we’re going to have right now.

Here we are. Hispanics are the minority that grows the fastest in the United States. We’re more than 50 million in the country. That’s more than 16 percent of the total population. And we keep growing. The question is, how many Hispanics are eligible to vote and how many of them are actually going to vote on November 6th? We have more than 23 million of Hispanics that can vote. However, we estimate that only half of them are actually going to vote in our next election in November.

Economy and jobs are the most important things for Hispanics in this election. But immigration, health and education are next in order of importance. And therefore the economy is our main concern when we see Hispanic unemployment at more than 10 percent, more than the national average. There are more Hispanics or Latinos unemployed compared to the rest of the population in the United States. Latinos are a very important group for our national economy. The United States has 25 millions of Hispanics working, that’s 16 percent of the labor force. Hispanics spent approximately 1 billion dollars. Martinez, Alvarez and Rodriquez are business owners for example. There are approximately 2,300,000 small businesses in the country. Hispanics have started twice as many businesses as the national average.

Education: Every 26 seconds a student drops out of high school in the United States and Hispanics are the ones who have the highest drop out rate. 41 percent of Hispanics older than 20 years don’t have a high school diploma. And only 13 percent actually graduate from a university or college.

Health: We have the highest number of people without health insurance. More than 30 percent of our population has no health insurance in our country.

And if we look at the numbers, the question remains: is the Hispanic vote going to make a difference in the next election? The states that have a high population of Hispanics and will be key in the coming election are Colorado, Florida, North Carolina and Nevada. But in our next election, nothing is written in stone … anything can happen.

MS:
We’ll be right back with your questions for the Republican Candidate Mitt Romney.

**BREAK**

JR:
We’re going to now present Republican Candidate Governor Mitt Romney. Governor, welcome.

MR:
How are you? Nice to see you. Thank you.

MS:
Welcome.

MR:
Thank you. And Jorge. How are you my friend?

JR:
How you doing? Nice to see you again.

MR:
Thank you so much. Thank you. Thank you guys. Thank you. Hi there. Yep, How are you? Jeb … How are you? Randy… How are you? Thank you.

MS:
Thank you. They love you very much over here. You’re loved. Thank you for coming.

MR:
Thank you. It’s wonderful to be here.

JR:
Your father was born in Mexico. Are you sure you’re not Hispanic?

MR:
I think for political purposes that might have helped me here at the University of Miami today. But the truth is as you know my dad was born of American parents living in Mexico. But he came back to this country at age 5 or 6 and was helped to get on his feet, and recognized this was the land of opportunity. And he’s been the role model and inspiration throughout my life.

JR:
Thank you for coming. We really appreciate that, thank you. Let’s start with a question before talking about education, as that is one of our main discussion points. We have seen the video where you talk about the 47 percent. You also talk about your concern that Hispanics don’t vote for your party; that they vote for the Democratic party and that we’re going to be in trouble for that.

Then you say that the 47 percent doesn’t pay taxes, that they depend on the government of the United States and they’re not going to vote for you. That is something similar to what you said at the beginning of the year in February when you said that you were not concerned about the very poor. Will you please explain that to us? Do you regret saying that? Some people might think that you are dividing the United States and you’re underestimating 47 percent of the population which included veterans, Latinos and people who receive Welfare.

I was watching an interview that your mother gave in 1962. And your mother mentioned that when your father came from Mexico, she was also receiving benefits from Welfare. What do you have to say about that Governor?

MR:
Well, first of all this is a campaign about the 100 percent. And over the last several years you’ve seen greater and greater divisiveness in this country. We had hoped to come back together but instead you’ve seen us pull apart. And politics has driven us apart in some respect. So my campaign is about the 100 percent of America. And I’m concerned about them. I’m concerned about the fact that over the past four years life has become harder for Americans. More people have fallen into poverty. More people we just learned have had to go onto food stamps. When the President took office 32 million people were on food stamps. Today 47 million people are on food stamps. Now I know that I’m not going to get 100 percent of the vote. And my campaign will focus on those people we think we can bring in to support me. But this is a campaign about helping people who need help. And right now the people who are poor in this country need help getting out of poverty. The people in the middleclass need help because their incomes have gone down every year for the last four years. Jobs are harder to find. We have 23 million Americans out of work, or stopped looking for work, or underemployed. Half the kids coming out of college aren’t able to get jobs. Or jobs consistent with a college degree. And this is a tough time for America.

And I’m convinced that if we take a different course based upon my experience a course that will reignite America’s economy, you’re going to see those numbers change. You’re going to see people coming out of poverty. You’re going to see incomes rising again in America. That’s the course that I think we have to take. And by the way, with regards to how I’m confident that that’s what can happen. I have a record. I’ve demonstrated my capacity to help the 100 percent. When I was Governor… (Applause) When I was Governor of my state, the State of Massachusetts our incomes rose every year. We brought unemployment down to 4.7 percent. Our schools became number one in the nation. On all four measures, number one in the nation. And I was able to work with a Democratic legislature to get the accomplishments I’ve described. So, that kind of record shows I care about the 100 percent. People in America are going to have a better future if they elect me the next President. (Applause)

MS:
Governor, I have a question. An education question. According to the PEW Hispanic Center there are 1.7 million undocumented students that could benefit from deferred action. It would enable them to go to college, join the military, and get WORK permits. One of the questions most frequently asked by Facebook users is whether you would keep deferred action for THE undocumented, yes or no?

MR:
And by the way, the reason I’m hesitating to respond to your question is it’s being transmitted in my ear. So in case people are wondering why I’m so slow on the uptake. Thank you. The answer is this. The immigration system generally — and let me respond more broadly and then get to the specific of young people who were brought here through no fault of their own. And are now going to school here. The immigration system, I think we all agree, is broken and it’s been a political football for years and years on the part of both Republicans and Democrats. It needs to be fixed. Actually, I think one of the reasons candidate Obama got so much support from the Hispanic community in the last election is that he said that in his first year among his highest priorities would be to fix the immigration system. But he never even filed a bill. He never tried to fix the immigration system. So it’s time to put the politics aside and I will actually reform the immigration system to make it work for the people of America.

MS:
Well, we’re talking specifically about deferred action.

MR:
Well, let me begin by talking about what we do for our legal immigration system. I will make sure that people know that they can come to this country in a transparent and clear way. They shouldn’t have to hire lawyers to find out how to get in this country legally. I want to also make sure that instead of having our diversity visas offered, we provide instead the chance to pull families together. I want that to be the favored system for immigration. I also believe that we should have temporary work visas consistent with the needs of the employment community and by the way, if the student does so well that they get an advanced degree, I’d staple the green card to their diploma. Now, for those that are already here and that are undocumented, that were brought here by their parents and therefore are illegal aliens in this country, my view is that we should put in a place a permanent solution. What the president did was take no action when he had a Democrat House and Senate, even though he said he would, then he put in place something he called a stop-gap measure. Temporary. These kids deserve something better than temporary. They deserve a permanent solution and my view is that the ideas that were being brought forth by Senator Marco Rubio, those were things that should’ve been pursued. We should have had an answer. And my (inaudible) that for those young people who, for instance, serve in our military, that they should be able to become a permanent resident of the United States. That’s the kind of model I think that will work for these young people.

MS:
But, with all due respect, you are reluctant to provide details on a permanent solution that perhaps signifies you are evading the question.

What would you tell Hispanic voters right now regarding this important issue? All the DREAMERs want to know: if you become president, are you going to deport them or not? Yes or no.

MR:
Well, we’re not going to — we’re not going to round up people around the country and deport them. That’s not — I said my primary campaign time and, again, we’re not going to round up 12 million people that include the kids and the parents, and have everyone deported. Our system isn’t to deport people. We need to provide a long-term solution and I described the fact that I would be in support of a program that said the people who serve in our military could be permanent residents of the United States. Marco Rubio was working on legislation which he called, I believe, the Dream and Achieve Act. It had a number of features that said kids that get higher education could become permanent residents of the United States. But this is something that’s going to have to be worked out by the Republicans and Democrats together. I will lead a program that gets us to a permanent solution as opposed to what was done by the president which, with a few months before the election, he puts in place something which is temporary, which does not solve this issue. I will solve it on a permanent basis consistent with those principles.

MS:
So that’s your answer? You’re going to allow them to stay?

MR:
I’m not going to be rounding people up and deporting them from the country. We’re going to put in place a permanent solution and, unlike the president, when I am president I will actually do what I promise. I will put in an immigration reform plan that solves this issue.

JR:
What you said is not very clear. On January 26 you told me that you were in favor of self-deportation. In a debate in the primary on February 22 you said that you thought that the Arizona model was a model to follow. Should the United States follow Arizona’s immigration laws? And in that same response from when you told me that self-deportation will be a solution, do you think that we’re going to self-deport 11 million undocumented immigrants? Are you going to deport them or not? I’m not that clear.

MR:
I think I have some friends apparently. All right. I think I just answered the last part of your question which is that I said I’m not in favor of a deportation, mass deportation, a rounding up of 12 million people and taking them out of the country. I believe people make their own choices as to whether they want to go home and that’s what I mean by self-deportation. People decide if they want to go back to the country of their origin and get in line legally to be able to come to this country. Look, legal immigration is critical for America. I love legal immigration. No nation on earth brings in a million people a year into their country.

This country lives, in part, by virtue of the vitality of our legal immigration system. But at the same time, to protect legal immigration we have to secure our borders and what I like about the Arizona law was that the measure that says we’re going to have an employment verification system so that employers know who they’re able to hire and who they’re not able to hire. And by the way, in my view, if employers hire people that they know are not here legally, there should be tough sanctions on those employers.

JR:
Is the Arizona model for immigration one we should follow for the whole country?

MR:
The reason there’s an Arizona law is because the federal government, and specifically, President Obama didn’t solve immigration problem when he came into office. And so states are doing their best to try and solve it state by state. And any state tries to solve it in their own way, but the right answer is ultimately to have a federal solution to make sure that we have a robust and active legal immigration system, that we stop illegal immigration, and that we don’t have to have states trying to find solutions of their own. And one aspect of the Arizona law, which I think is worthwhile to consider and part of the federal solution, is this idea of an employment verification system.

JR:
Thank you, Governor. Thank you.

MS:
Governor, as we know, 40 percent of Hispanics that go to college, at least one out of four have Pell Grants. We have one of the students here that wants to ask you a question regarding that.

AM:
Governor, my name is Connie Fossi. I study political science and journalism at University of Miami. As many students do, I depend on financial aid that the government gives me to be able to attend university, including the Pell Grant. That’s why I’m so concerned about what Paul Ryan said, specifically the reduction of that program and the amount of students that qualify to get the benefits of that program. This is my question. Are you going to follow Paul Ryan’s advice or are you going to take a bigger path? Thank you so much.

MR:
Thank you. Well, congratulations. Are you going here at the University of Miami?

AM:
Yes.

MR:
Congratulations. A wonderful university. Is President Shalala here somewhere? Right here. Thank you. Thank you. It’s an honor being at your great University and it’s an honor being with Univision today and having Facebook join us as well. We’re going to continue a Pell Grant program. For those that are not familiar with it, Pell Grants are a federal program of providing granted money to young people going to college, particularly those who can’t afford college on their own. I’m proud of the fact that when I was governor of my state, we didn’t have the resources to do something as expansive as a Pell Grant, but I was able to put in something known as the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship Program.

Under that program, those who graduated from high school and passed our graduation exam, those who passed it in the top quarter of their high school got a four-year tuition free ride to the Massachusetts institutions of higher learning that are public. So I care. I care about your education and helping people of modest means get a good education and we’ll continue a Pell Grant program. I think the Republican budget called for a Pell Grants being capped out at their current high level. My inclination would be to have them go with the rate of inflation. I think it’s important in higher education that we get serious about the fact that the inflation of tuition has been much faster than inflation generally. And my view is we have to hold down the rate of tuition increases and fee increases in higher education. Sorry, President. We’ve got to find a way — we’ve got to find a way to keep those costs down and we’ll be able to keep up with costs by having Pell Grants grow at the rate of inflation. Thank you.

JR:
Let’s talk about the economy. You know that Hispanics, we have a serious problem with unemployment — 10.2 percent, that’s the last number we got, one out of four Latinos live in poverty.

Facebook sent us a question. Miriam asks: when you say you’re going to create 12 million jobs, how would you do it? Can you answer with something specific? How are you going to create 12 million new jobs?

MR:
Yeah, that’s a great question and it counts, and you point out, Jorge, exactly the truth. There are two million more Hispanics living in poverty today than when the President took office. We’ve now had 56, I believe, straight months with unemployment above 10 percent for Hispanic Americans. It’s unacceptable. And so my plan has five major parts, and I know you don’t want me to go into detail on all five. I’d take over the whole show. But let me describe what they are. Number one, we have an enormous advantage with our energy resources. Taking full advantage of oil, coal, natural gas, nuclear and renewables will create about four million jobs by itself. That’s number one.

Number two: Trade. The opportunity to add more trade, particularly in Latin America, where there’s a natural advantage in time zone and language for us. That’s going to create more jobs and we’ve got to crack down on China and any other nation that cheats on trade because it kills jobs here.

Number three: We have to make sure that our people have the skills to succeed. I want to get our training programs to do that, and I want to make sure our kids in school get the kind of skills they need for the jobs of tomorrow. Our schools are not performing at the level they should. I want to put the kids and the teachers first. I think the teachers’ union has to go behind. We’ve got to put our kids first. That’s number three.

Number four: We’ve got to get America on track to a balanced budget. I think it’s immoral for us to spend our kids’ future, to pass on those debts. And jobs won’t come here if they think we’re on the road to Greece, and that’s where we are today.

And Number five: We have to have a pro-small business agenda. Taxes, regulations, health care, all those things encouraging small business. Small business, of course, Hispanic Americans lead in creating small businesses over the population at large. I want to have an administration that’s focused on getting small business growing again. Thank you.

JR:
Thank you, Governor.

MS:
Governor, as we know, student loan debt has reached a record high of over 1 trillion dollars. That’s higher than all of us have in credit card debt. There’s another student that wants to ask something about this.

AM:
Good afternoon, Governor Romney. My name is Laura Morcate, I’m a student here. I study communications. I’m a university student and it’s hard for me to pay for my tuition. What specific steps will you take to — as President — to ease the debt burden of a million young people, and promote a better future for higher education?

MR:
The best thing I can do for you and for other young people graduating from University of Miami is make sure that when you get out of the University of Miami, you have a job, all right. That’s a key thing. Because right now, half the kids in this country that are graduating from college, or did last year, those that came out last spring, half couldn’t find a job or a job consistent with their college degree. And I don’t want you to come out of this college having all that debt and all the work that you put in place, and then find out that you can’t get the kind of job in communications or a related field that you need.

And so my agenda is making sure that this economy, once again, is creating the kind of jobs that make sure that people coming out of college can get good jobs. We’ve always, as a nation, snapped up young people coming out of college. They started their careers and that provides them the income growth that they can start a family, they can build a future. But that’s changed in these last few years. And so the best thing I can do is not to — Hey, I’ll loan you more money. Here let’s loan you — I don’t want to overwhelm you with debts. I want you to make sure you can pay back the debts you’ve already got and that will happen with good jobs and that’s why my five-point plan to get 12 million new jobs in this country is the best thing I can do for you and for the students of America. Thank you.

JR:
Thank you. Governor, let’s talk about healthcare. President Obama has assured us that since five million Hispanics don’t have health insurance, they will be covered with Obamacare 2016.

On Facebook, Margarita Martinez asks: if you’re elected president, would you repeal all of Obamacare or just change parts of it? Which parts would you change and if there’s something good will you keep it?

MR:
Well, first of all, I would repeal all of Obamacare and replace it with I think the kinds of reforms we really need. And I have experience in healthcare reform. Now and then the President says I’m the grandfather of Obamacare. I don’t think he meant that as a compliment, but I’ll take it. This was during my primary. We thought it might not be helpful, but I’ve actually been able to put in place a system that fits the needs of the people of my state, and I’m proud of the fact that in my state, after our plan was put in place, every child has insurance, 98 percent of adults have insurance, but we didn’t have to cut Medicare by $716 billion to do that. We didn’t raise taxes on health companies by $500 billion as the President did.

And so we crafted a program that worked for our state, and I believe the right course for healthcare reform is to say for each state we’re going to give you the Medicaid dollars you’ve had in the past, plus grow them with inflation, plus one percent, and you as the states are now going to be given targets to move people towards insurance and you craft programs that are right for your state.

Some will copy what we did; others will find better solutions. But the nature of the American experiment has been letting states build plans and ideas that work for each of them, share those ideas with one another. The idea of a federal government stepping in and telling people here’s the kind of insurance you have to have; you don’t get the choice of whether you want comprehensive or whether you want catastrophic. The government’s going to tell you what you have to have. The government is going to ultimately have a board that tells you what kind of care you can receive. That, in my opinion, is not the right way to go in healthcare.

The approach that I would propose is one which will give individuals choice as opposed to government choice. That’s going to get our people insured. It will keep the cost of healthcare from going through the roof as it has been, and I believe it will allow people to continue to have the relationship with their doctor and their provider that they want.

MS:
Well, we’re going to take a break and will continue with our conversation. We’ll be right back with Mitt Romney and other questions that are important to you, after our break.

**BREAK**

JR:
Let’s continue with our meeting with Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney. Thank you for being with us and accepting to speak with us during this important conversation for Hispanics. We thank you and President Obama for being with us during these conversations.

MS:
I think there is a question about our neighbors south of the border in Mexico. If you’re elected President, you will begin your term at the same time as Mexico’s President-elect, Enrique Pena Nieto. He will inherit a drug war that has taken more than 65,000 lives in the past six years. If he was right here in front of you — not as a joke — if he was sitting over here. Would you ask him to continue with the same strategy as President Calderón or would you tell him that it’s time to change the strategy to avoid more deaths?

MR:
Well, I’d tell him that this is a problem that we share, that this is not Mexico’s problem. This is also the United States of America’s problem, that we have a responsibility in this country to reduce drug usage. The fact that there is a drug world, narco-crime and terrorism, and that these cartels are terrorizing the people of Mexico, and some of that violence spills over our border. That’s due to the demand here in this country. And so the President of the United States, and I would say this to him, that the President of the United States must make a priority of helping reduce demand in this country, and communicating to our young people, and older people, that when they use these illegal drugs, they are contributing to the deaths of people around the world. So I’m going to make that a priority. That’s number one.

Number two, I’m going to let him know that we want to help and that if we can help, as we did in Colombia with intelligence work and surveillance work. Again, Mexico is a sovereign nation and I’m not going to impose our involvement where he doesn’t want it. But I would want him and his government to know that we stand ready to help in this effort because we understand. This is a shared concern. And so I’d like to have a partnership with Mexico with regards to helping alleviate the danger associated with these drug cartels.

And by the way, there are other places we’re going to have a relationship with Mexico. Our economies can thrive together. The oil resources that Mexico has, that’s one of the reasons that I know that we can be able to achieve North American energy independence in eight years. We’re going to work together with Mexico, if they’re willing, to help share technology, and ultimately, investment, if they would like, to take advantage of those resources they have. A strong and robust Mexican economy will be good for the people there, will hopefully draw people away from illicit products like drugs, but that’s going to also take a very firm hand here in this country to interdict the flow of drugs into this country, and of course, as I said, to stop the usage of drugs to the extent that is humanly possible. That has to be a priority again for the President of the United States.

JR:
Governor, I don’t know if you want to sit down for our next question, but I’m going to ask it standing up.

MR:
Okay, all right, that’s good.

MS:
I want to talk about education, and then your children’s education. Of course, the U.S. Declaration of Independence says that we have all been created equal. However, you have said openly that you oppose same sex marriages and you want to change the Constitution to ban them. It’s a personal question, if one of your children, grandchildren, or other relative, any of them, were gay, and would want to get married, what is your advice for them?

MR:
Well, my kids are all married, so I’d be surprised. But I have grandchildren. And I love my children and I love my grandchildren. And I would, of course, want them to be happy. My view is this, that individuals should be able to pursue a relationship of love and respect, and raise a family as they would choose. I would like to have the term “marriage” continue to be associated with a relationship between one man and one woman. And that certainly doesn’t prevent two people of the same gender living in a loving relationship together, having a domestic partnership, if you will. I can see rights, such as hospital visitation rights, and similar types of things, being provided to those individuals. But marriage for me continues to be a relationship between a man and a woman.

MS:
Governor, in the Republican Party Platform … during your convention … there were calls for English to be the official language of the United States. You are here tonight with us in Spanish so we imagine that you also support the idea that there is an important role for Spanish in this country. What role should Spanish play in America?

MR:
Well, you know, English is the language of government in this country. That’s the way it’s been for some time, as you know. But I take some inspiration from the comments of Governor Luis Fortuno, who is an extraordinary governor of Puerto Rico. He said that “Spanish is the language of our heritage. English is the language of opportunity.” And so if I were, I mean, I have a son who speaks pretty fluent Spanish. I’m delighted that he is, my son, Craig, over here. Look, I’d like our kids to speak foreign languages. I’d like, if you’re lucky enough to grow up in a home where English and Spanish is spoken, or English and another language, great, learn the other language, be able to communicate with other people in the world. But also, teach our kids English so they can achieve the kind of opportunity which is associated with the language which is, really, as Governor Fortuno said, “the language of opportunity” here.

MS:
Thank you. Governor, this is our last question from the audience, Carida Tabares. Carida, the microphone is all yours.

AM:
Thank you. Good evening, Governor. My name is Carida, and I’m a student here at UM. I have a master’s from another university, a master’s degree in Education. I was a teacher for twelve years, a Chemistry teacher. At the end of this year, I stopped teaching. And now I’m going to school full time.

This is my question for you: the past four years as teachers in our county, we didn’t have, not even one, raise in salary. So I would like to know if you’re elected President, what are you going to do so teachers will have a salary where they can make a living off teaching, so they can provide for their families

On average, right now, that’s not been happening. So what are you going to do so teachers that are really good teachers — I know many of them — so they won’t stop teaching? Thank you so much. God Bless.

MR:
Thank you. A Chemistry teacher? Are you going to go back to teaching again, or are you going to take a different profession, another profession? We need you in teaching. And we need to do a better job so that it’s a better profession, apparently, for you to be attracted to staying in teaching. And I would like that to be the case, because particularly in sciences and in math, we’re falling behind. How are we going to lead the world as a nation if our kids coming out of high school are scoring in the bottom quartile, or bottom third of performance around the world? And people wonder, why is that? And you know, we know the answer to that. This is not a mystery. We have all these different school systems around the world, and even within our own country. And we can compare and learn how it is that we could elevate the quality of education. And the answer as to the single most important thing you can do to improve the education of a child is to hire high-quality teachers, and promote them, and pay them, and make sure that the very best and brightest come into teaching.

That’s what distinguishes nations like Finland, and Singapore, and Korea. They choose among the best and brightest. And instead of locking their compensation with tenure, where you start at a particularly low level and then move piece by piece, regardless of how well you teach, regardless of whether the area you’re teaching is in huge demand, like Chemistry and science, and math would be, everybody gets moved along at the same rate. Look, I’d like to say we reward our very teachers with wonderful compensation. I want to pay the best teachers more. I don’t want the unions telling us how we should attract people into a profession. And teaching is a profession.

So we’re going to, I mean, this is not a mystery. I mentioned that I’m proud of the fact that in our state, that on the NAPE Exams, and you’re familiar with that, coming from teaching, but we test our kids around the country in four different areas, fourth graders and eighth graders in English and in math. And in Massachusetts, we rank number one in all four. And the reason we’re able to do that is because we said we’re going to have high-quality teachers, school choice. Under my federal plan, I’m going to take dollars that normally are sent to states and school districts, I’m going to instead say, “That goes to the child to take to him or her to the school of their choice.” And let’s let students go to the schools where they think they’re going to get the best education.

I want to make sure that people understand that teaching is the kind of profession that would attract the best and brightest. And for that to happen, I think we have to change from a union-dominated setting to one where the very best and brightest are highly-compensated, they become mentor teachers, we don’t have them have to go into administration, but they find teaching a wonderful profession for their entire careers. Thank you.

MS:
We’re going to take another commercial break, and we’ll come back so you can have the opportunity to address our Hispanic voters on camera. We’ll be right back.

MR:
Thank you.

**BREAK**

MS:
Mitt Romney will now address Hispanics in the United States on camera. It’s all yours.

MR:
Well, thank you so much Maria Elena and also thank you Jorge. It’s good to be back with you again. And appreciate the chance to be here at the University of Miami. And the warm welcome from so many people here. Thank you so much. It’s very generous. I want you to know at home and here in the audience: I’m concerned about America. I’m concerned about the direction of America. I’m concerned about the fact that we have 23 million Americans that are out of work or stopped looking for work. Or they’re underemployed. I’m concerned about the fact that we’ve gone for over 50 months with unemployment above 10 percent among Hispanic-Americans. I’m concerned about the fact that so many young Hispanic Americans dropout of high school, don’t get the kind of education they need for the skills that they have to have for tomorrow. This is a nation which has been put on a course which is extraordinarily different than the course we’ve known. The President’s policies, and I think while well intended, haven’t done the job that needs to be done. I understand what it takes to create jobs. I did not spend my life in government. I had the chance of spending my life in small business and then larger business. I learned from those experiences how the economy works. I want to put America back to work again. I know how to do that.

It is not by growing a bigger and bigger government, that takes from some to give from others. That’s what happens in other parts of world. If it doesn’t work there, it’ll never work here. The right course for America is to believe in free people and free enterprises. I don’t want to redistribute wealth in America, I want to build wealth in America.

It’s a critical time for our country. Where you’re going to decide what kind of an America we’re going to have. I know what it takes to get jobs back in this country. To see rising incomes again. To make sure our kids have the kind of the schools they deserve. I know how to work on both sides of the aisle. I was elected Governor of a state where 87 percent of my legislature was in the opposition party. But we worked together, because we knew how important the job was that we have to do.

Washington is broken. I will go to Washington and with every ounce of my energy bring this country together. Bring people of both parties together to solve the problems we have. Immigration is an issue we’ve been speaking about for years. People use it as a political football. They never get the job done. You’d lose your job in the private sector if you didn’t get the job done. I will get the job done. I’ll create jobs, I’ll solve these issues. We’ll have a brighter future for ourselves and for our kids. And I appreciate your vote. I need your vote. Get out there and vote on November 6th, thank you so much. Thank you Maria Elena. Nice to see you.

MS:
Thank you Governor.

MR:
Thank you.

JR:
Thank you very much. Thank you Governor, thank you.

MR:
You’re very kind.

JR:
It was a pleasure. Thank you so much. And this is it. This is a special news program regarding our meeting with Governor Mitt Romney. We have education in its future. We have had 35 minutes of straight conversation. And we’re going to do the same thing tomorrow. We want to thank the University of Miami for allowing us to be here and to broadcast from the BankUnited Center. Thank you so much.

MS:
Thank you so much to the Republican candidate Mitt Romney for participating. Thank you so much to all of you who sent your questions and thank you for watching. Thank you for your support. See you soon, see you soon in November.

JR:
Please vote.

MR:
Thanks Jorge. Thank you. Thanks so much. Maria Elena, thank you. Thank you, thank you. Enjoyed the chance to be here with you.

JR:
Thank you.

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