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I don’t remember, in previous presidential elections, ever seeing a sharper contrast between two visions for America.

Working families have a vision for the future based on our fundamental values: hard work, fairness, patriotism and the belief that we’re stronger when we work together. So we have a common vision of broadly shared prosperity. Hard work is rewarded, opportunity is shared equally and, by working together, we bring out the best in ourselves and our country.

Barack Obama shares that vision.

Then there’s the vision championed by Mitt Romney, for a country where prosperity is the privilege of an elite few. In this vision, opportunity is reserved for those who can afford it, corporations are people—but worth a lot more—and Made in America is a slogan for chumps. Opportunity means the opportunity to outsource jobs—and, if you make $20 million a year like Mitt Romney, you can outsource your bank accounts, too.

There’s another value that shapes working families’ vision: honesty. We believe in looking each other in the eye, telling it like it is, hashing through our differences honestly and still being able to call one another “brother” and “sister” afterward.

If you’ve followed Mitt Romney over the years—heck, from day to day lately—you can see he doesn’t give a hoot about honesty. He’ll look you in the eye and tell you anything he thinks you want to hear. Your trees are just the right size. He’s a car guy. He loves teachers. He’s for 100% of the people. The richest Americans are the job creators.

You know who the job creators really are? We are—working people are. We buy the houses and the cars, the groceries and utility services, the shoes and the school supplies that keep local businesses alive and thriving—so they can invest in their facilities and hire local workers, who spend their paychecks and grow the economy. It’s a virtuous circle. We need this virtuous circle to get out of the hole the previous administration left us in—and we won’t get there if we keep sinking ever deeper with Mitt Romney’s proposals.

You can’t trust a guy whose “five-point jobs plan,” if it ever were articulated with honest arithmetic, boils down to one point: Feed the rich and hope for the best.

Working people share this additional value: we need security, both national and personal. And that means we hold our leaders to sacred promises to defend us from external threats, as well as to protect our health care and survival needs in our old age.

You can’t trust a guy who’s embraced as his running mate the author of the Ryan budget—which would destroy the promises of Medicare and Medicaid and privatize Social Security.

No one who works, worked or aspires to work should need more reasons to vote this year. Mitt Romney has always been by, for and of the rich. And that is what he will always be.

Originally posted to Richard Trumka on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 12:08 PM PDT.

Also republished by I Vote for Democrats, J Town, DK Poli, Barriers and Bridges, and In Support of Labor and Unions.

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