By State Rep. Will Weatherford

No armchair quarterback has ever won a football game. No spectator has ever been the victor in a battle. Contests are decided by the participants; this important truth forms the basis of my appeal to all Floridians to take an active role in the election of our next U.S. President.

America, once widely considered the “shining city on a hill,” is now struggling under the weight of excessive spending, an extended recession and an uncertain future. This has led some to say that America’s best days are behind us: those critics are wrong. The desire for and pursuit of freedom is still alive and well. Yet, many of our government’s policies are stifling the very spirit that has made our country great.

We have all heard that leadership starts at the top. The President of the U.S. has an important role in setting a direction for the nation. I believe that our country needs a change of course.

For this reason, I have taken an active role in support of Mitt Romney for President. Mitt Romney still believes in the promise of America.

As the former Governor of Massachusetts, a traditionally liberal state, he has a proven record of results. In just one term, Gov. Romney turned around a state that was mired in fiscal and economic problems. When he came into office in 2002, Massachusetts was shedding jobs and running a deficit. By the time he left office in 2006, he had balanced the budget, cut taxes 19 times, and generated enough new revenue to create a surplus of $2 billion for a rainy-day fund. The result? Employers once again began hiring. All of this was accomplished in a politically polarizing

environment. He didn’t make excuses; he made a difference.

As a presidential candidate, Romney is right on the issues. Social Security is shaping up to be a central issue for voters, especially in Florida where we have the largest population of seniors. Gov. Romney recognizes that Social Security faces a severe financial shortfall, and he has developed well thought-out reforms to fix and strengthen the program so that we can keep our promises to both current seniors and to future generations. It’s a sensible, conservative plan, not a wrecking ball.

Romney also has a very detailed program to turn around the economy. It’s probably the most thoughtful and far-reaching proposal ever put forward by a presidential candidate. It’s a 150- page plan (along with 59 separate actions) to get the U.S. economy growing again and it includes tax reform, cutting federal spending and reorganizing the federal government. You can read the plan for yourself at

I have two young daughters, and their future weighs heavily on my wife and me. I am deeply concerned about the way our leaders in Washington, D.C., continue to push off difficult decisions at the expense of my children and your children. America’s spending cannot be sustained. It is not fair to bill the next generation for the excesses of politicians today. We need someone with the courage and conviction to stop making soft decisions, and instead put America’s needs first. Mitt Romney is that kind of leader.

The upcoming election for our next President is a contest of great consequence. We have been given the privilege of making the choice to decide who will lead our nation. For me, that choice is Mitt Romney. I urge all Floridians to step off the sidelines and get involved in this very important election. I urge you to become a part of restoring the promise of America.

Note-We invite you to respond to Rep. Weatherford’s endorsement column, whether you’re a Democrat, Republican, Liberal, Conservative, Libertarian or just have a different view on the Republican race. Please try to keep your columns to about the same length as this piece (less than 600 words) You can email them to or post your responses to our website, or to our Facebook page. – GN

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