Romney blasts Obama, praises Christie and Rubio; says Social Security shouldn’t become ‘Perry scheme’by George Bennett | October 4th, 2011
THE VILLAGES — Mitt Romney took another shot at Republican presidential rival Rick Perry‘s position on Social Security today but directed most of his salvos at President Obama during an appearance here this afternoon.
He also weighed in on New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie‘s decision not to enter the race and on Sen. Marco Rubio‘s prospects as a vice presidential candidate.
Romney spoke to a crowd of about 250 people in this heavily Republican Central Florida retiree community. About 40 Democrats in blue T-shirts — a large turnout for this area — stood outside holding signs critical of Romney.
Perry, who until recently was the frontrunner in the GOP race, has called Social Security a “Ponzi scheme” for younger workers.
“I don’t think the major problem is that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme. I think the prob is keeping it from becoming a Perry scheme,” Romney said.
Romney criticized President Obama’s handling of the economy and his recent statement in a TV interview that America “is a great, great country that had gotten a little soft and didn’t have that same competitive edge that we needed over the last couple of decades.”
Said Romney: “He said the American people have become soft. That’s not the problem, Mr. President. It’s that they don’t have a leader who knows how to make this country strong …The problem is not the people. The problem is the government.”
As he signed autographs a woman mentioned that she was originally from New Jersey.
“From New Jersey? Wonderful. That’s Chris Christie country. He’s a great governor,” Romney said.
Later, Romney added: “Competition is always a good thing and he (Christie) would have been a very fine contender, an excellent competitor, if he were in the race.”
Asked about Rubio as a running mate, Romney said: “It would be a little presumptuous of me to try to decide who a VP nominee might be, but he would certainly be someone that anybody would be proud to be associated with.”
Tags: Chris Christie