By Katie O’Donnell — 12/13/11
Buddy Roemer isn’t your grandpa’s kind of Republican.
The former congressman and governor of Louisiana is running for President of the United States on a platform that is not being discussed by many in the political field today.
“I know politics. And I know politics has become a race for money…not a race for service, not a race to improve the country. Just a race to get re-elected,” Roemer said in an interview with WEBN’s Kate Spalla.
Roemer added that “I’m a combination of a practicing politician and practicing business man. I think that’s a good combination for Washington.”
Roemer served in political office from 1981 to 1992 and later taught at Harvard University as a Kennedy Fellow. After leaving Harvard he founded three community banks in Louisiana. Earlier this year he registered to run in the New Hampshire Republican Primary.
“The Republican president needs to be the American president and reach out to Democrats and Independents and build a new nation. And that’s why I’m running- to build a new nation.”
During his interview with Spalla, Roemer spent most of his time discussing his favorite issue: corruption in government. He believes the country is “heading in the wrong direction” and the best way to divert its course is through bipartisanship. Roemer said if he were nominated as the GOP candidate to run against President Barak Obama, he would look into having a “conservative Democrat” as his running mate.
Roemer’s idea to clean up Washington starts with getting special interest money out of the politicians’ pockets. “We need a president free to lead.”
To set an example for the other candidates Roemer’s campaign will not be accepting any money from a political action committee (PAC) or a super PAC. His website accepts maximum donations of $100 a person.
Roemer went on to say that it “broke his heart” to see the Occupy Boston tent city dismantled. He responded to other candidates’ remarks about the Occupy protestors being unpatriotic. “What short memories these guys have. I remember when young people got us out of a war in which we didn’t belong…being this age at 68, I remember Vietnam.”
Roemer told Spalla that the next American president needs to stand up to China and establish new trading rules that would continue to allow imports from there, but they would need to hold up to new standards of no child labor and no forced labor. He said “I’m not a free trader. I’m a fair trader.”
Though he is on the New Hampshire primary ballot, Roemer will not be appearing in the ABC debate being held at Saint Anselm College on January 7. He said every time he tried to register for the debate “the rules kept changing.” Despite that setback, he was optimistic that his message would resonate with Americans.
“I’m proud to be a Republican, but I’m prouder to be an American.”