Candidates on the role of the federal government
Part 5 of the first presidential debate
- Duration 11:36
- Date Oct 3, 2012
Part 5 of the first presidential debate
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To our next segment and is the role of government.
And and it's a role of government.
And it is -- were your first on this Mr.
President the question is this do you believe.
Both of you that you had the first two minutes on this Mr.
Do you believe there's a fundamental difference between the two abused as to how do you view the mission of the federal government.
-- are definitely bigger differences.
That the first -- the federal government has to keep the American people safe that's its most basic function and as commander in chief.
That is something that I have.
Worked on and thought about every single day that I've been in the Oval Office.
But I also believe that.
Government has the capacity.
The federal government has the capacity.
To help open up opportunity and create ladders of opportunity.
And -- frameworks work the American people can succeed -- look the genius of America is the free enterprises and freedom and the fact that people can go out there and start a business.
Work on an idea.
Make their own decisions but.
As Abraham Lincoln understood.
Are also some things we do better together so in the middle of the civil war Abraham Lincoln.
Said let's help to finance the -- come -- over.
Let's start National Academy of Sciences.
Start land grant colleges because we want to give these gateways of opportunity for all Americans.
Because if all Americans are -- opportunity were all going to be better off.
That doesn't restrict people's freedom that enhances.
And so what I've tried to do as president is to apply those same principles.
There when it comes education.
-- what I've said is.
We've got to reform schools that are not working we used something called race -- the top wasn't a top down approach governor what we've said is.
To states won't give you more money if you initiate reforms and as a consequence you have 46 states around the country.
Who have made a real difference.
But what I've also -- is -- hire another 100000.
Math and science teachers make sure we maintain our technological lead in our people are skilled and able to succeed and hard pressed states right now can't all do that.
-- we've seen the layoffs of hundreds of thousands of teachers over the last.
Several years and governor Romney doesn't think we need more teachers.
I do because I think that that is the kind of investment where the federal government can help they can't do -- all.
But it can make a difference.
And as a consequence we'll have a better trained.
Not workforce and that won't create jobs because companies -- locate in places where we've got a skilled workforce -- governor on the role of government here you look for the first.
I look great schools Massachusetts -- schools are ranked number one of all fifty states and the key to great schools great teachers.
So I reject the idea that I don't believe in great teachers are more teachers every school district every state should make that decision on their own.
The role of government.
Look behind us the constitution and the declaration of independence.
The role of government is to promote and protect.
The principles of those documents.
First life and liberty.
We have -- responsibility to protect the lives and liberties of our people and that means a military second and I do not believe in cutting our military I believe in maintaining the strength of America's military.
In that line that says we are endowed by our creator with our rights.
I believe we must maintain our commitment to religious tolerance and freedom in this country.
That statement also says that we are endowed by our creator with a right to pursue happiness is we choose.
I interpret that as one making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can't care for themselves or cared by by one another.
We're a nation that believes that we're all children of the same god.
And we care for those that have difficulties those that are -- elderly have problems and challenges those that are disabled we care for them and we.
We look for discovery and innovation all these things -- -- desired.
Out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens but we also believe in maintaining.
Four individuals the right to pursue their dreams.
And not to have the government substitute itself.
For the rights of free individuals.
And what we're seeing right now is in my view a a trickle down government approach.
Which has government thinking -- can do a better job than free people pursuing their dreams and it's not working.
And the proof of that is 23 million people out of work the proof of that -- wanted to six people in poverty.
The proof of that is we've gone from thirty to -- and food stamps to 47 million and food stamps.
The proof of that is that 50% of college graduates this year can't find work.
We know that the -- path we're taking is not working it's time for a new path.
I just got us some specifics in terms of what out each -- -- views the role of government how do you education.
Does the federal government have a responsibility.
To improve the quality of public education in America.
Well the primary responsibility for education as it is of course -- the state and local level.
But the federal government also can -- a very important role -- and I agree with secretary Arnie Duncan needs is some ideas he's put forward.
And raced to the top not all of them but some of them might agree with -- and I congratulate him for pursuing that.
The federal government can get local and state schools to do a better job -- my own view by the way it is I've added that I happen to believe I want.
The kids that are getting federal dollars from ID EA -- -- title on these are disabled kids or.
Or four kids or or that the lower income kids rather I want them to be able to go to the school of their choice.
So all federal funds instead of going to the to the state or to the school district I'd have go if you will follow the child and let the parent and the child decide where to -- there's there their student.
How do you see the federal government's responsibility.
To address -- to improve the quality of public education in this country well -- I've indicated I think that and as a significant role to play.
Two or race of the top program we've worked with Republican and democratic governors.
To initiate major reforms and they're having an impact right now -- can't -- a different -- your views and then there's a governor Romney on about education and -- this is where.
Budgets matter because budgets reflect choices.
So when governor Romney indicates that he wants to.
And potentially benefit folks like me and him.
And to pay for we're having to initiate.
Significant cuts and federal support for education that makes a difference you know his his running mate congressman -- purported budget.
That reflects many of the principles that govern -- talked about had.
It wasn't very detailed this seems to be a trend but but what it did do is to if you extrapolated how much money.
We're talking about you'd look at cutting the education budget by -- -- -- percent.
When it comes to.
We are saying great work done out there all over the country because.
That we have the opting to train people for jobs that exist right now and one of the things I suspect governor Romney and I probably agree on his.
Getting businesses to work with Community Colleges so that they're setting up your training programs -- have -- governor.
But about just finish my point my it's about what I thought back Toby what's -- on my statement by the way to -- Where where they're partnering so that.
Training programs and people who were going through -- know that there's a job waiting form of the complete okay that makes a big difference but that requires.
Some federal support let me use just say one final example.
When it comes to making.
College affordable whether it's to -- or four when things that I did it as president was we were sending sixty billion dollars.
Two banks and lenders as middlemen for the student loan program even though the loans were guaranteed so there -- no rest for the banks of the wonders.
But they were taking billions out of the system.
We said why not cut out the middleman.
And as a consequence what we've been able to do is to provide millions more students assistance.
Or -- keep a low interest rates on student loans.
And this is an example of where our priorities make a difference governor Romney.
-- genuinely believe cares about education but when he tells a -- wouldn't that.
Help you should borrow money.
-- from your parents to go to college.
You know that indicates the degree to which.
He'll -- there may not be as much of -- focus on the fact that folks like myself folks like Michelle kids.
Probably to attend University of Denver just don't have that option and for us to be able to.
That make sure that they've got that opportunity and they can walk through that door.
That is vitally important not just to those kids it's how we're gonna grow this economy over the long term Clinton rural.
Ran out of time kept him spending -- -- -- -- bottom of that professor -- -- -- your title.
This present your own airplane and -- your house but not your own facts are -- I'm not gonna cut education funding.
I don't have any plan to cut education funding and and grants go to people going to college I'm planning on continuing to grow so I'm not planning -- making changes there but you make -- very good point.
Which is that that the place you put your money -- good mix pretty clear indication where your hardest you put ninety billion dollars.
Injured in the green jobs.
At and I look I'm all in favor green energy -- That that would have that would have hired two million teachers.
Ninety billion dollars.
And and these businesses many of them go out of business I think about half of them.
The ones have been invested in have -- a business a number of them happen to be owned by bit by by people who are contributors to your campaigns look the right course.
For for America's big government we're talking about the role of government is not to become the economic player picking winners and losers telling people what kind of health.
A treatment they can receive taking over the health care system that that is existed in this country -- For a long long time -- has produced the best health records in the world the right answer for government has to say how do we make the private sector become more efficient.
And more effective how do we get schools to be more competitive let's grade -- I propose we -- our schools so parents know which schools are succeeding and failing.
So they can take their child that was to a school this being more successful I don't I don't want to cut our commitment to education.
I wanted to make it more effective and efficient.
And by the way.
I've had that experience I don't just talk about it.
I've been there Massachusetts schools are ranked number one in the nation this is not because I didn't have commitment to education.
It's -- guess I care about education for all of.
Our kids side gentlemen -- we want sect look at reserved for -- -- that we've we've got married have three minutes left.
I'm a better grade.
The two of you and say you branches -- meant to bomber.
Or I've done and done a poor job -- well no but the fact is government did the role of government and governing.
We've we've lost it up pot in other words so we only -- three free minutes left.
In the -- debate before we go to your closing statements.
And so I want to ask.
Finally here and remember we got three minutes total time here.