Romney Needs Spending Cutters

May 11, 2012

The Washington Times today discusses whether Mitt Romney’s political and policy team is looking too much like George W. Bush’s team. The reporter quotes me in his article:

Chris Edwards, director of tax policy studies at the Cato Institute, a libertarian-leaning think tank, offered glowing reviews of Mr. Romney’s troika of advisers—Mr. Hubbard, Mr. Mankiw and Kevin Hassett, another former member of the Bush team—on issues of taxation and economic policy.

“These are brilliant economists,” Mr. Edwards said before cautioning that Mr. Romney shouldn’t look to Mr. Bush’s team on the spending side.

“A key failing of Bush was that he spent far too much money. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget chiefs, like Joshua Bolten, were not spending cutters. Indeed, they were believers in big government like Bush was,” he said.

“So,” he said, “Romney needs spending-cutting experts to complement these tax experts. Our giant $1 trillion deficits and huge Obama spending increases will be the key thing Romney needs to tackle if he is elected.”

“So he needs experts on how to cut, privatize and downsize federal departments like Housing and Urban Development, Energy and Education. If elected, he needs a hard-line spending-cutting OMB chief. He needs Cabinet secretaries who believe in cutting their own departments.”

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