February 18th, 2010
02:49 PM ET
8 years ago

Romney's verdict: Obama has failed

Mitt Romney spoke Thursday at CPAC.

Mitt Romney spoke Thursday at CPAC.

Washington (CNN) - The current president has been in the Oval Office for just over a year, but former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has already issued his verdict: Obama has failed.

"President Obama fails to understand America," Romney told the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington during a detailed speech that listed the myriad ways the new administration has made the country worse.

Romney mentioned the recent political difficulties of the Republican party, but he said "2009 was the president's turn to suffer losses, and not just at the ballot box, but also in bill after bill in Congress, and most importantly, in his failure to reignite the economy."

He said Obama has come up short at nearly every turn during his brief time in office: Senate Democrats stood in the way of his agenda, the unemployment rate grew, and Scott Brown gave Republicans the crucial final vote to block his attempt at health care reform.

The once and possibly future presidential candidate even called on Brown to introduce him to the CPAC crowd, a surprise appearance that brought wide-eyed conference-goers to their feet. One young woman was spotted later talking excitedly into her cell phone: "Scott Brown AND Dick Cheney showed up and we saw them both in person!"

Brown claimed to have driven his now famous pick-up truck to the event, held at a Washington hotel, and praised Romney for encouraging him to keep fighting for his beliefs in the traditionally Democratic state of Massachusetts.

He said Romney was "the first guy to push me along to encourage me to make a difference."

Romney, perhaps making a nod to his sometimes troubled relationship with the party's conservative wing, acknowledged that he and his fellow Massachusetts Republicans have "been understandably regarded somewhat suspiciously in gatherings like this" but celebrated Brown's special election victory along with the audience.

Though Romney did not shy away from standing up for President Bush during his own campaign in 2008 - particularly on national security matters – he offered some of his warmest words yet for the 43rd president.

"I am convinced that history will judge President Bush far more kindly" than President Obama, Romney said. "He pulled us from a deepening recession following the attack of 9-11, he overcame teachers unions to test school children and evaluate schools, he took down the Taliban, waged a war against the jihadists, and was not afraid to call it what it is, a war, and he kept us safe."

Romney added that he respects "the loyalty and indefatigable defense of truth that comes from our 'I don't give a damn' Vice President Dick Cheney."

Updated 6:30 p.m. : Brad Woodhouse, Communications Director for the Democratic National Committee, issued a statement in response to Romney's remarks Thursday:

"Mitt Romney's address to CPAC today – and the overwhelming greeting that attendees gave to Dick Cheney – makes one thing perfectly clear: the Republican Party still pines for the very leadership that bankrupted this country financially, with their reckless economic policies, and ethically, with their allegiance to special interests over the American people. And that's what real failure looks like."

Filed under: CPAC • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (212 Responses)
  1. Anthony

    So do everything humanly possible to obstruct and roadblock the President, then turn around and blame him for not accomplishing anything?????

    And to say Bush was better then Obama???

    These guys really do live in their own fantasy worlds, dont they!!!

    Re-writing history in deed...

    February 18, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  2. Marc

    'and most importantly, in his failure to reignite the economy.'

    Typical. GWB has 8 years to create a recession, Obama has less than a year to undo it = Republican way to see things.

    February 18, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  3. ThinkAgain

    Romney claims that GW Bush, "took down the Taliban"?

    What have you been smoking, Mitt?

    GW Bush and Cheney dropped the ball on Afghanistan, let Osama bin Laden escape into Pakistan and now the Taliban is resurgent.

    Typical Republican: rewriting history, lying through his teeth, doing whatever he can to make President Obama and our country fail.

    What a jerk!

    February 18, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  4. Mr. Moderate

    And a multi-millionaire investment banker understands America?

    Mitt, what world did you live in? Bush DID NOT KEEP US SAFE. The deadliest attack in history occurred under his watch. He did not take down the Taliban. Until Obama's recent successes there was a very real danger of them taking back not only Afghanistan, but Pakistan. And while he took us out of one recession, he sent us into a second much more severe one! Also, interesting how you failed to mention Iraq.

    Finally, give up your presidential ambitions. Most of the right wing of the party consider you to be a member of a religious cult and would never vote for you!

    February 18, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  5. joe mett

    First, your political and financial greed is amazing. As a hedge fund manager, you took over businesses, downsized workers out of their jobs, sell the businesses off and make millions. Then after doing that several times over, you are worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

    Then you come back to the same people you downsized out of jobs and want them to vote for you because your moral conservative values are impeccable!!! God save us from these moral conservative sadducesses and pharisees!!!

    You are the perpetual politician who thinks God has ordained you to be President. Come 2012, write yourselve a $90 million check for your campaign and go and lose in grand style. Which planet do you folks come from?

    February 18, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. Russell

    What is with some of these white politicians , Obama hasn't failed , maybe in the eye of true racist , but when it comes to normal thinking Americans , i'll bet they trust Obama to lead more than they would Romney and his fake religion , When Obama term is up then and only can we say he passed or failed his presidency , for right now , Romney needs to crawl back under the rock he was hiding under....

    February 18, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  7. FL Voter

    Coming from Romney, who FAILED at even presidential consideration.

    3 words that sadly escapes the GOPer mindset:
    Irony, Projection, and Hypocrisy.

    February 18, 2010 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  8. OldUncleTom

    Until today, I would have called Mitt Romney a reasonable man for a Republican, magic underwear and all.

    Alas, another one bites the dust. Mitt should stick to destroying the economy through his hedge fund, while it lasts.

    February 18, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. mike

    The only people who have failed this nation are the morons in the Party of No ... who know soundbytes but have no clue on governing ...

    The GoP & their proxy arm of Tea Baggers act like spoiled children day in & day out ...

    February 18, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  10. Bill from CA

    Wow, calling the president a failure after one year? Sounds like wishful thinking for your presidential campaign, Mr. Romney, and at the expense of the well-being of the country as a whole.

    February 18, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. Ben in Texas

    BTW, love the Tyrannosaurus pose, Mittens. Put them grasping, greedy little paws out there, boy. I am Mormon, hear me roar!

    February 18, 2010 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  12. Four and The Door

    Certainly Obama is in a very protected environment, surrounded by YES men political advisors who are doing him no favors. Those people showing outrage to their congressmen in public meetings? "They are not real Americans...they are sent there by the Republicans. Americans love you, President Obama." Those people marching all across the counrty? "They are just the fringe radical right wing. Americans love you, President Obama." Those Massachusetts voters who sent us a Republican? " That was just poor campaigning by the Democratic candidate. Americans love you, President Obama."

    I hope his political advisors have their excuses coming together when Americans take congress away from the Democrats in November.

    February 18, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. Gary

    Gary's Verdict: Romney is a jerk.

    February 18, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. Patman

    romney has obviously been popping rush Limbaugh's oxycontin if he believes that stuff he said about Bush!

    February 18, 2010 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  15. John, Brooklyn, NY

    Considering the bang up job Romney did in Massachusetts, I'd say he could talk from experience about failed leadership.

    February 18, 2010 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |

    So Now President Obama doesnt understand America. what America might that be Mittens? just your conservatives America. oh thats right Democrats are not American,Only you people are patriotic only you people love this country well Mittens as far as being a faliure you couldnt even beat Mccain old man Mccain in a primary now there my friend is Faliure.

    February 18, 2010 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  17. cindy ex-republican

    It looks like he is failing because that is what you hatefull, nasty, selfish republicans want him to do. You are not thinking of us, you are lieing to the people who trust you. Everything you say and do is for brownie points. I truly believe all this will come back to haunt you and the likes of Palin and Limbaugh and all you other horrible people who are tryin to destroy America for the sake of political gain. Horrible

    February 18, 2010 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  18. CBass

    Looks like Rush is their leader after all.

    February 18, 2010 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  19. vgal

    Is that SERIOUSLY all the Republicans can utter out of their mouths – Obama has failed????? How about we see how ANY of the republicans have succeeded in doing ANYTHING except get PAID by the taxpayers to whine, whine, whine. I'm paying YOUR salary – GET TO WORK.

    February 18, 2010 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  20. Billy J..Texas..

    I wonder what kind of excuses Romney would be giving us right now if HE were President, and had either printed money leaving us at 10 percent joblessness like this admin, or left it alone and let it rise to 35 percent or more. It is so easy to sit in the backseat and complain.

    February 18, 2010 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  21. vgal

    The ONLY person in government that is doing anything IS OBAMA. NONE of congress – dems or repubs – are doing anything at all. They are all getting paid large salaries to sit and moan about each other. GET TO WORK. The American taxpayers are SO SICK of hearing from these nitwits in congress.

    February 18, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  22. W l Jones

    Remember he only been in America but a short time that what you conservative said, Hawii is not America only one of our fifty state yet convinced the majority of the people he is were right man for the job that an accomplish in it self and the world show us a job is well being done. Bless you.

    February 18, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  23. Not Fooled Again

    The Republicans make every effort to stop progress in every way. The ideal working situation under Republican rule is corporate thuggery, the destruction of the middle class, rapid environmental destruction and under the direct guidance of the Israel Lobby's Federal Reserve, to be in every increasing debt and desperation. Nothing is more idiotic than a far-right Republican, and Dick Cheney is one of their morbid high priests. He's in the same category of the insane as Hagee, Limbaugh, Palin, Stalin and Hitler.

    February 18, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  24. Wayne

    Failed after only 1 year? Isn't a term four years? Comments like this show how out of touch with reality Republicans are.

    February 18, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |

    Mittens Bush did not keep us safe 911 Happened on his watch I believe him and Dick were in the White house at that time that is hardily Keeping us safe. but keep the kool aid going for the radcial racisit right!

    February 18, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9