Johnson, Davis praise Romney speech

URBANA — Mitt Romney "did a good job" in his speech accepting the Republican presidential nomination, U.S. Rep. Tim Johnson, R-Urbana, said Friday.

And 13th Congressional District GOP candidate Rodney Davis said Romney "laid out a vision for creating jobs, keeping taxes low, cutting spending, and reducing our national debt."

"I thought he did a good job. He laid out a good plan for progress and focused on his background and how he's been successful in other areas," said Johnson, who like Davis did not attend the convention in Tampa, Fla. "I think he made a good case for taking those same talents and transporting them to the United States government. It was a pretty powerful message that laid out some clear alternatives in terms of his economic programs. And I think he did it in a way that wasn't nasty or mean-spirited.

"He talked about the clear differences in terms of his agenda and in terms of economic policy and incentives and trade and his personal history. All of those things combined made an awfully good case."

Johnson had supported U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas for the Republican presidential nomination but has since endorsed Romney.

"A lot of people thought he needed to hit a triple or a home run," Johnson said of Romney's nomination acceptance speech expectations. "I'm not sure it was a home run, but he sure didn't strike out or hit an infield single. It was very, very good."

Johnson said he had no problem with actor-director Clint Eastwood's rambling speech that preceded Romney's.

"My reaction to it is that people are just sick of politics as usual. I'm a big Clint Eastwood fan anyway and he would have had to fall on his face for me to not like what he did," the congressman said. "But I think he made a good case, in a pretty non-partisan way, for the fact that we've had someone in charge who hasn't done a very good job and that it's time for a change."

Johnson said he didn't regret missing the Republican convention. Although he has been in Republican politics for more than 40 years, he's only attended one national convention: Houston 1992.

"I know you can be appointed as a superdelegate, but in all honesty I think conventions are meant in substantial part for people who go out in the vineyards," Johnson said. "I don't want to take the place of someone like a Fred and Marilyn Welch (longtime Republican activists from Urbana), someone who has been a real worker for the party. I don't think that's a good idea. I've turned down opportunities to go. I think it should be there to reward people."

Davis, meanwhile, said Romney gave the necessary attention to economic matters.

"I think he did a great job. The fact that he's going to lay out his five-point plan is going to change the debate to the issues at hand, which I think most Americans care about. If the debate is focused on the economy and jobs, Romney and Ryan win," said Davis, who watched part of Thursday night's festivities with a group of College Republicans in Champaign.

He said Romney also managed to convey a more likable, everyman image.

"I'll be honest with you, I used to have that problem with Romney too," Davis said. "I was working for a different candidate (John McCain) in 2008 but then I got a chance to meet him. And he is probably one of the most likable, down to earth people in politics I've ever met. The more people get to meet Mitt Romney and get to see him, I think that perception goes away."

Davis, who attended Republican conventions in 2004 in New York City and 2008 in Minneapolis, said he was glad to stay home this week.

"I'm happy to have stayed here and campaigned," he said.

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dregstudios wrote on September 01, 2012 at 8:09 am
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Is there any doubt that a Romney administration would favor the rich and increase the income gap in our country?  Mitt is a pariah in Mormon Clothing and will stop at nothing to expand an empire of greed for the rich in this country by expanding tax cuts for the 1% of the wealthiest Americans.  He’s out to gut the Middle Class for every red cent he can get.  Will his sacred Mormon underwear grant him the protection and money to buy this election?  See for yourself as Mitt dons his tighty-whities sent down from the Good Lord Himself at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot.com/2012/05/mitt-romneys-magic-mormon-underwear.html

americanproud wrote on September 01, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Anyone else notice that the nastiest, most hate-filled responses to the online News-Gazette stories are always written by liberals?  Maybe they're so afraid of being defeated in November that their only way to vent their fear is through hate and lies.  Maybe if they wrote in a thoughtful, respectable manner, people would actually pay attention to them.

Batman wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

Just blindly follow your party - we don't need you to pay any attention to us.  The last thing we need is to flood the Democratic party with people of very limited intellect.

Sid Saltfork wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

I don't know that the hate is restricted to the liberals only.  I watched the Republican Convention this week.  Some of it turned my stomach.  The old geezer with the chair was terrible.  I am going to watch the Democratic Convention also.  I will be counting the hate statements there also.  Maybe, the debates will be better.  I want both parties platforms to be listed side by side; and discussed.  A discussion the issues; and explainations of the plans to solve the problems is needed.  This polarization of the right wing, and the liberals is getting old.  It only panders to the idiots who vote based on slogans, sound clips, and spin doctors.  

Brad Cortright wrote on September 02, 2012 at 12:09 am

Well stated, Sid.  Issues are what matter, not petty politics and Kabuki theatre. 

Batman wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

And oh.. one other thing,, the citizens of this country did pay attention. John McCain suffered a thumping loss in 2008.

Batman wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

Mitt Romney has not specified one detail about how he is going to reduce the deficit while raising defense spending by $150 billion a year and lowering taxes for the rich.  It is a shame that people who have represented us blindly applaud a ridiculous speech that had no specifics.  It makes you wonder how intelligent our reps are.  I would like someone (including Tim Johnson) to tell me excatly what Romney is cutting and by how much, to reduce the deficit.  Not one major economist nor the CBO says Romney can do what he claims he is going to do and yet our reps act like sheep.

Batman wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

To give you an idea of how clueless Tim Johnson is, he "liked" Clint Eastowood's epilogue.  Clint Eastwood asked "Obama" why he didn't bring the troops home "tomorrow".  Romney has said it is critical US troops stay in Afghanistan even beyond 2014.  If Clint Eastwood is so worried about our troops why did Romney not say "boo" about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq during his acceptance speech??  Does Romney not care??  Clint Eastwood made a fool of himself and diminished his legacy as a brilliant actor and a so-so director.  Clint Eastwood was a sideshow that took away and contradicted Romney's message.  Glad you "liked" it Tim.

Batman wrote on September 01, 2012 at 1:09 pm

"Clint, my hero, is coming across as sad and pathetic. He didn't need to do this to himself. It's unworthy of him."  Hey Tim this is what Roger Ebert said of Clint Eastwood.  I am sure you have heard of Roger Ebert.. haven't you??

americanproud wrote on September 01, 2012 at 9:09 pm

Sid, I actually agree with you.  Seeing a layout of the plans and goals of each party would be terrific!  Side-by-side comparisons, clearly delineated.  I don't think that's too much to expect.