By Geneva Sands - 11/04/11 07:16 PM EDT
“I believe it will be a two-person race in New Hampshire, and I believe Mitt Romney will be one of them, and it’s important to compare and contrast at this point,” Huntsman said on Fox News. “It’s important to talk about flip-flops on life, flip-flops on guns, flip-flops on taxes, flip-flops on healthcare reform.”
Huntsman’s campaign has consistently focused its strategy on the New
Hampshire primary, which takes place Jan. 10, 2012.
The former Utah governor told Fox News that Romney’s proposal to cut the federal debt panders to voters by not including significant entitlement reforms or changes to the Defense Department budget.
“I don’t want to pander, I’m not going to talk about not including everything in entitlement reform that needs to be on the table or not touching the Department of Defense,” Huntsman said.
When pressed on whether he believed Romney was in fact pandering, Huntsman said, “Listen, there’s no question about that.”
Romney explained his plans for tackling the U.S. debt and spending in an opinion piece Thursday in USA Today.
He cited the repeal of “ObamaCare,” cutting family-planning programs, eliminating Amtrak subsidies and ending certain foreign aid as examples of ways he would reduce spending.
Here’s what he had to say on reforming Social Security and Medicare:
Reforms should not affect current seniors or those near retirement, and tax hikes should be off the table. However, the retirement age for younger workers should be increased slowly to keep up with increases in longevity. And Social Security benefits for higher income recipients should grow at a slower rate than for those with lower incomes.
Tomorrow’s Medicare should give beneficiaries a generous defined contribution and allow them to choose between private plans and traditional Medicare. And lower-income future retirees should receive the most assistance. I believe that competition will improve Medicare and the coverage that seniors receive.