GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney won the Michigan and Arizona primaries Tuesday (CNN), vowing in his victory speech to “restore America’s promise through more jobs, less debt, and smaller government.” A CNN exit poll shows that, in Michigan, the economy was the top issue for 55 percent of voters with the budget deficit ranking second at 24 percent. Similarly exit polling in Arizona showed that these issues are of major importance with 49 percent of voters polled picking the economy and 30 percent the deficit.
Rick Santorum, who came in second in both states, touted his 100-day economic plan last night, saying that, as president, he would put millions back to work by unleashing “the entrepreneurial spirit” of the energy sector.
GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich focused his primary night speech (CBS) on a variety of issues ranging from gas prices to the Middle East. GOP candidate Ron Paul, meanwhile, used his primary night speech (DailyBeast) to criticize government spending and overseas troop commitments.
In remarks to the United Auto Workers conference in Washington, President Obama touted a Trade Enforcement Unit he created by executive order Tuesday aimed at countering unfair trading practices by countries such as China. “When the playing field is level, nobody will beat us,” he said. Obama had announced the panel in his 2012 State of the Union address when he spoke about the need for U.S. manufacturers to remain competitive globally.
GOP candidate Mitt Romney also, in a recent op-ed, wrote about the need to counter what he says are abusive Chinese trade, intellectual property, and currency valuation practices.
—Liriel Higa, Contributing Editor