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The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.
NEW YORK (
TheStreet) -- As the presidential primaries continue, it seems increasingly likely that former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney will eventually win the Republican nomination. Current polls show President Obama enjoying a solid lead over Governor Romney in the general election, but a lot can happen between now and November. Should Mitt Romney win, here's a list of 10 things he
shouldn't do as president.
Bomb Syria. The situation in Syria is volatile and will probably get worse before it gets better. Some politicians, perhaps most notably Senator John McCain, are calling for the U.S. to intervene militarily. Candidate Romney hasn't yet spoken out in favor of bombing Syria, but President Romney should resist any pressure to do so. The U.S. has finally gotten (mostly) out of Iraq, and is winding down its war in Afghanistan. Our troops are exhausted and deserve a well-earned break. If the U.S. intervenes in Syria we should do it with diplomats, not combat troops.
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Inflate the military budget. Mitt Romney is proposing a slew of cuts to trim the national budget, many of which have merit. At the same time, however,
The Boston Globe reports that Romney has pledged to commit at least 4% of the nation's gross domestic product to "core" defense spending, with many war expenses tacked on top.
Romney's proposed expenditures are not only extravagant, they reflect a fundamental failure to grasp how technology has changed modern warfare. Instead of buying fleets of new ships and aircraft just for the sake of having them, Romney would be wiser to propose targeted spending on research and development to ensure that America's military is the best, not just the biggest.
Repeal Dodd-Frank. There's a lot to dislike about the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, a rambling behemoth of a statute that won't be fully understood for years. Candidate Romney has promised to repeal the act, "recognizing that some revisions make sense" (again from
The Boston Globe). Thus far, however, Romney has offered no explicit proposal for what he'd put in place instead. Repealing financial services reform without enacting alternative safeguards would leave the U.S. in the same precarious position it was before the 2008 financial meltdown, hardly a desirable outcome. A more thoughtful, surgical approach to amending the act would likely yield better results.
10 Reasons Obama Will Be Re-Elected