Romney Vs. Obama: How’d Their Biggest Projects Do?

An old high school chum of mine has gone Leftie, big-time. She recently posted this on Facebook: “How, as a thinking woman, could anyone possibly endorse Romney, Ryan, or the Republican Party? I am saddened by the degree they dupe frightened, uninformed people.”

My response to that kind of insult is usually to ignore it, or to joke, “Ohhhhh, nooooo! You found out about my LOBOTOMY!”

But no more. The time is now for major pushback.  Just who has duped the “frightened, uninformed people”? Let’s put on our thinking caps, and review the two Presidential candidates’ track records on the biggest accomplishments on their resumes.  Then we’ll see whom the “thinking people” should support.

Barack Obama: EPIC FAIL

Obama’s biggest project was the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. It was a community-organizing project with a goal of helping educational outcomes of disadvantaged children and youth in Chicago. It cost nearly $150 million – one-third from the late billionaire Walter Annenberg (TV Guide, Seventeen, Philadelphia Inquirer, etc.), one-third from matching private sponsors, and one-third from taxpayers. Obama was on the founding board in 1995, served as president from 1995-99, resigned to run for office in 2000, and was listed back on the board in 2001, when the project wrapped up.

It was a complete, total, embarrassing waste of money – a huge flop.

The 2003 final technical report by the Consortium of Chicago School Research stated “the Challenge had little impact on school improvement and student outcomes, with no statistically significant differences between Annenberg and non-Annenberg schools in rates of achievement gain, classroom behavior, student self-efficacy, and social competence.”

Look at the condition of Chicago’s school district now: 80% of its eighth-graders are not proficient in either reading or math, and nearly 50 percent never graduate, according to the U.S. Department of Education (in an unbelievable irony, that huge federal education agency is run by Obama appointee Arne Duncan, who was the CEO of the terrible Chicago schools from 2001-08). The district’s budget deficit is projected to hit $1 billion next year. Its teachers have the highest union pay scale in the U.S., averaging a salary of $71,200 after 13.7 years, and the union rejected a raise of 16% over four years and went on strike, shutting out 350,000 students from the classroom.

Now for the other candidate’s biggest project:

Mitt Romney, 2002 Winter Olympic Games: HUGE SUCCESS

Apparently, Salt Lake City lost out on the 1998 Olympics. So to try to lure the International Organizing Committee to Salt Lake in 2002, members of the Salt Lake committee allegedly offered $1 million in goodies. It provoked a U.S. Justice Department influence peddling investigation, the Democratic mayor’s decision not to go for re-election, and, though a judge eventually dismissed the charges, Salt Lake’s Olympic planning effort was in a free-fall. It had a budget shortfall of just under $400 million, potential sponsors wouldn’t touch it with a 10-foot pole because of the scandal, the media was in a feeding frenzy, and hopes for a successful Olympics were almost nil.

Then they hired Romney. He spent a few weeks studying each budget line item and instituted solid, common sense management practices to save money. He traveled cross-country to reassure sponsors. He led a team of 23,000 volunteers; dealt with crucial security issues just months after the 9/11 terrorism attack, and was transparent with the media, meeting with them once a week and giving them real news instead of self-serving booster-ism. 

The Olympics hit its ticket sales goals, 2.1 billion people watched worldwide, and the event created a surplus of $56 million, which is now set up to provide ongoing facility upkeep. Romney donated $1 million personally to the Olympics. He said he would accept his salary of $250,000 only if the event finished in the red; when it did, he donated his salary to charity.

One Romney booster said it is “almost eerie” how our nation’s current situation, from scary deficits to deflated morale, parallels the situation in Salt Lake City when Romney rode into town and fixed it.

Hmm. Maybe we “thinking” Americans can actually overcome our “lobotomies,” and recognize who is the better candidate for the most powerful office in the world.

Ya think?



Ann-Marie Murrell

Ann-Marie Murrell is one of the creators of PolitiChicks and co-owns the site with Morgan Brittany. Ann-Marie is co-author of two bestselling books, “What Women (Really) Want” and "PolitiChicks: A Clarion Call to Political Activism". She has appeared on dozens of television shows including Fox & Friends, CNN, Hannity, the Dr. Phil Show, Huckabee, Lou Dobbs, C-SPAN, One America News, Stuart Varney & Company, Newsmax, MSNBC, and more. In addition to PolitiChicks, Ann-Marie has written for multiple other news sites. You can find Ann-Marie Murrell on Facebook and Twitter: @PolitichickAM E-mail:

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