In an effort to trim down the nation's $15.5 trillion debt, Republican GOP candidate Mitt Romney has pledged, that if he were president, he would get rid of several "non-crucial" programs, including Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the U.S.
The former Massachusetts governor, looking ahead after narrowly losing the Alabama and Mississippi primaries on Tuesday, stopped in Kirkwood, Mo., for an interview, where he discussed his economic strategy for getting America back onto its feet if he is elected president.
Although his GOP rival Rick Santorum won the Missouri vote, the delegates in the state are still up for grabs, and Romney wanted to make a good case for why he should get the lion's share of the 52 delegates at stake.
In the interview, Romney shared a list of programs he plans to cut in order to reduce the national deficit:
"The test is pretty simple. Is the program so critical, it's worth borrowing money from China to pay for it? And on that basis of course you get rid of Obamacare, that's the easy one. Planned Parenthood, we're going to get rid of that. The subsidy for Amtrack, I'd eliminate that. The National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities," he said.
Romney's plans to take down Planned Parenthood can be seen as an attempt to reach out to more conservatives and evangelicals who want to see the largest abortion-provider in America shut down.
One suggestion he gave for lowering the cost of gas was more drilling – which stands in contrast to Obama's green technology and alternative energy focus.
"We're going to start drilling again in the Gulf, we're going to drill in the outer continental shelf, we're going to drill in North Dakota, Oklahoma and Texas. That communicates to the world that there will be more supply coming from the U.S. And that affects the price of gasoline," Romney said.
A.B. Lowther, who heads up Romney's efforts in Elmore County, Ala., explained that although Romney's Mormon faith is sometimes seen as troublesome by conservative Christian voters in the South, the former Massachusetts governor can still do well in those states, as he possesses the type of wisdom that appeals to all people.
Romney insisted in the interview that despite the competition he is currently facing from Santorum, he was still the frontrunner in the race and the only person who stands a chance of defeating Barack Obama in the presidential elections in November.