STEIN: We still very much still have a crisis in our economy. One out of two Americans are in poverty or heading towards poverty. About 25 million people are either jobless or working in jobs that do not pay living wages. There are 8 million people who've lost their homes. There is no end in sight to the foreclosure crisis. And we have an entire generation of students who are effectively indentured servants, trapped in unforgiving loans and do not have the jobs to pay them back with unemployment and underemployment rate of about 50% among our young people. So, we very much need new solutions. What we hear from both Obama and Romney are essentially a rehash: more about deregulating business & Wall Street. We are calling for a Green New Deal modeled after the New Deal that actually got us out of the Great Depression. They created approximately 4 million jobs in as little as two months.
Now, it ultimately is going to be up to the voters, to you, which path we should take. Are we going to double-down on the top-down economic policies that helped to get us into this mess? Or do we embrace a new economic patriotism that says America does best when the middle class does best? And I'm looking forward to having that debate.
ROMNEY: If the tax plan he described were a tax plan I was asked to support, I'd say absolutely not. What I've said is I won't put in place a tax cut that adds to the deficit. So there's no economist that can say Mitt Romney's tax plan adds $5 trillion if I say I will not add to the deficit with my tax plan.
OBAMA: Well, for 18 months he's been running on this tax plan. It is not possible to come up with enough deductions and loopholes to avoid either raising the deficit or burdening the middle class. It's math. It's arithmetic. Look, we've tried this. Gov. Romney's approach is the same sales pitch that was made in 2001 and 2003, and it all culminated in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.
ROMNEY: You've been president four years. You said you'd cut the deficit in half. We still have trillion-dollar deficits.
At the same time, gasoline prices have doubled under the president. Electric rates are up. Food prices are up. Health care costs have gone up by $2,500 a family. Middle-income families are being crushed.
And so the question is how to get them going again. And I've described it. It's energy and trade, the right kind of training programs, balancing our budget and helping small business. Those are the cornerstones of my plan.
And finally, with regards to that tax cut, look, I'm not looking to cut massive taxes and to reduce the revenues going to the government.
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