Seniors will embrace Mitt Romney’s message because they know he will not harm Medicare for current seniors and will preserve it, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater told Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview at the Republican National Convention in Tampa.
Atwater said seniors in Florida are like seniors in other parts of the country and so far they have been receptive to the message of Romney and vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan.
Watch the exclusive interview here.
“Our American senior is one who has dedicated their full life – these are individuals who fought for freedom in other continents, they came back, they pressed through, they pressed through a depression early in life, they have fought through a Cold War – all for the next generations,” he said.
“It would be hard for me to even imagine that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, being directly honest with them, that the entitlement of Medicare today will not be there for their children, unless something changed, that they will be the first to say, ‘Barack Obama, stop lying to us. Our entire life’s work has been about the next generation. Mitt Romney wants to save Medicare for the next generation. Stop lying about that man. You do something about it. We’ll embrace Mitt Romney’s message, even if it’s change we’re embracing it because Mitt Romney is not going to harm Medicare for current seniors and those about to become our seniors. He’s going to preserve it for the future.’”
Atwater had months ago predicted that Romney would become the nominee and said it was because Romney had “such a powerful message about economic growth and prosperity and that is what everyone has been longing to hear again, that you would have a candidate that believes in the American people, that believes in our form of governance, believes in limited government, believes in the talent of the individual to carry us and it was such a powerful message from a man who had that kind of experience.”
The key to winning the White House is Florida, Atwater said, as it has been in recent elections.
“It will come down to Florida,” he said. “The next president will have won Florida. There is no way that the next president of the United States will be president without winning Florida. Mitt Romney must win Florida. People have talked about what the Paul Ryan impact on the ticket and Florida and things that Paul Ryan has fought for and trying to preserve Medicare and preserve it for the long haul, for the next generation.”
Atwater continued, “There is no mistake about it that if Barack Obama can carry Florida, he retains the presidency. There’ll be no less than $100 million from Barack Obama or Barack Obama supporters to influence the outcome of the election in Florida with things that they will say which will terribly untrue but only have to work long enough, two weeks, three weeks maybe, maybe only three or four days near the end, to carry the election for him.”
Atwater called on Floridians to stay engaged until the end of the campaign.
“So it’s going to be powerfully important that Mitt Romney’s message and those of us who were out here supporting Mitt Romney in Florida stay active to the very end to help be sure that the Floridian knows exactly who they’re voting for and the truth about where these two men stand.”
If Obama wins Florida, and therefore likely the White House again, Atwater said because of Obamacare, “one third of the entire state budget is one line item, that’s Medicaid.”
“If Obamacare goes into effect, you’ll be adding millions to the rolls of Medicaid. It’s presently one third of the state budget,” Atwater said.
“There is nothing else to cut. This is going to be tax upon tax of fellow Floridians to cover a federal program that nobody wants, if he is re-elected and Obamacare cannot be stopped. Nobody wants it. He pressed for it. It is going to bankrupt Florida without extraordinarily new high taxes.”
He went on to say, “You could reduce all of the criminal justice system, all of general government, do away with the Department of Forestry, all the things you could possibly do away with and we’ll still have to raise taxes to cover Obamacare and it’s just an atrocious idea and it would bankrupt our state unless we’re going to raise taxes on Floridians and they don’t want it, they don’t need it. So that’s why it matters. Get out and vote Mitt Romney and preserve Florida and save America.”
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