Romney: Compare $5 Million We Put in Staples to $530 Million Obama Put in Solyndra
(CNSNews.com) – Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a Republican presidential candidate, invited voters on Sunday to compare the $5 million his venture capitalist firm invested in Staples to $530 million in tax dollars President Barack Obama invested in Solyndra, which went bankrupt.
Speaking at a rally at the Rochester Opera House in Rochester, N.H., Romney said Obama was in “over his head” in dealing with the economy.
As a venture capitalist, Romney said, he helped start Staples, which now employs about 90,000 people.
Romney said his firm invested $5 million to open the first Staples store. “We knew that if it worked well, we’d open a second store and put in more money to get it going,” he said.
“Now let’s contrast that with the president’s investment in Solyndra–$530 million,” said Romney. “He puts in $530 million. They have the Taj Mahal where they have their offices. Our offices? We’re in the back of an old shopping mall, and our chairs were naugahyde with an old table that we used as the board table,” Romney said.
“Because it was the private sector, and we were pulling ourselves up by, in some respects, by our boot straps, we were careful,” said Romney.
Romney argued that Obama did more harm than good for the solar industry by loaning money to Solyndra.
“Why do I say that?” said Romney. ”Because across America, I’ll bet there were a hundred different people who had different ideas for solar companies and were trying to go out and get investors–their mother, their father, their friends, venture capitalists to give them $5 million or $2 million to get their solar idea going,” he said.
“But when the government picks their winner and puts in $500 million, no one else can get money,” he said. ”Everyone says, ‘Oh, the government’s already picked the winner here.’ So in fact, what he did made it harder for our technology of the future to be developed.”
“This president is a nice guy who just doesn’t get it,” said Romney. ”I spent my career in the private sector. I’m not perfect, but I do get it, and I’ll use what I know to get America to work.”