Obama = Carter, Romney says
July 15th, 2011
09:48 AM ET
7 years ago

Obama = Carter, Romney says

(CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney leveled his harshest criticism to-date against President Obama Friday comparing the current president to former one-term Democratic President Jimmy Carter.

The former Massachusetts governor is expected to link the Democrats while campaigning in New Hampshire Friday. In a press release, Team Romney said Obama's comments Thursday in a television interview that Americans are "stressed out" are equivalent to Carter's 1979 "Malaise" speech when he said Americans have a "crisis of confidence." Friday is the 32nd anniversary of the address.

"Yes, Mr. President, Americans are stressed – stressed about rising unemployment, falling home prices, and an economy that's isn't working for them," Romney said in a statement. "Not since Jimmy Carter have we seen such failed economic policies. Who would have guessed that we'd look back upon the Carter Administration as the good old days?"

As the frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination in 2012, Romney, a former businessman who's making his second bid for the White House, has consistently taken aim at the president over his handling of the economy, telling voters it helps to have had a job if you hope to create jobs.

At an event in New Hampshire Thursday, Romney needled the president over the debt ceiling negotiations.

"Come on, Mr. President," Romney said. "You can, by yourself, cut spending, agree to cap the spending and put in place a balanced budget amendment."

Brad Woodhouse, communications director for the Democratic National Committee, said Romney's proposed economic plan would "benefit millionaires at the expense of the middle class."

"Mitt Romney is so out of touch he thinks what Americans need right now is to make life more difficult for seniors by ending Medicare and slashing Social Security to continue funding tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires," Woodhouse said in a statement. "Mitt Romney's failed leadership and policies are a form of stress no American should be subject to."

Filed under: 2012 • Jimmy Carter • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    Lame. Carter, in fact, never even used the word "malaise"...and in this situation, it was the reporter who tried to put it in Obama's mouth. But hey, it's clearly more important that we get stories about this and discuss petty name-calling instead of looking under the hood at why Issa cancelled his hearings on the FCIC, which he claimed were necessary because he accused Dems on the Commission of doing nothing more than "cheering for the administration" and trying to abuse their positions. Yeah. Except documents reviewed by congressional investigators ended up revealing that Republican commissioners and staffers were improperly sharing the FCIC's work with outside parties. Emails even showed that one Republican commissioner was trying to use his position on the commission to bolster the GOP's chances of repealing financial services reform. Backfire much? Helping bury it, CNN?

    July 15, 2011 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  2. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Let me think on that a minute......naww, I don't think that's an apt comparison especially with the hell that's getting ready to break lose any minute now.
    There's a cool burning fire within our President right about now that is getting ready to, at minimum, scorch the hell out of some folks in Washington DC.
    The President is getting ready to sing to the American public like an operatic canary.
    I wouldn't want to be part of his "repertoire".
    Jimmy Carter was a nice guy.Our President is currently singing "No More Mr. Nice Guy" to a sellout GOP crowd.

    July 15, 2011 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  3. Eye of Newt

    Romney is getting very creepy. He's lost whatever integrity he once had. He's getting sloppy ugly.

    July 15, 2011 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. Sniffit

    "The last time a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution was proposed, the GOP failed to give it the support needed to pass because they would have been forced to watch Bill Clinton get credit for it."

    Let's be clear about something: much of what the GOP demagogues isn't actually something that it wants to happen. If the US banned abortion nation-wide tomorrow, what would they have to demagogue? If there was a balanced budget amendment, how long do you think it would take for a crisis to be manufactured by a GOPer in the WH to justify getting rid of it? If gay marriage were made illegal across the country tomorrow, what would they have left? If all districts were redrawn to make sure that minorities were a minority of every district, would we hear anything about voter fraud and illegal immigration tomorrow?

    July 15, 2011 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  5. ART

    Yes Mitt we are stressed out, but its because of you and your do nothing republicans who are holding our economy hostage. You and your rich friends and the koch brothers don't have to worry, but people like me whos retirement cannot take another hit are the ones who are stressed out and do not worry you will never be President.

    July 15, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  6. Carrington1

    Nobody could say that President Carter was not a decent guy. But, on his watch, we had stagflation and the Iranians could stick their thumb in our eye with the embassy hostages with no fear of him. Obama can't be compared to him in international affairs. He is willing to assert American power militarily. But, he does share many of Carter's shortcomings with respect to the economy and it is having the same result.

    July 15, 2011 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  7. rhumba

    This is the kind of campaigning one does when one has absolutely nothing to offer.

    July 15, 2011 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  8. Randy, San Francisco

    Romney left out the most important comparison: Obama and Carter received the Nobel Peace prize for their contributions to world peace.

    July 15, 2011 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  9. Sank

    I would think Rommey would not insult Jimmie Carter in this way. Carter was a smart man.

    July 15, 2011 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  10. SecedingfromTexas

    @vet in Texas: He sobered up.
    @The Real Tom Paine: Right on!

    July 15, 2011 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  11. TXJim

    Romney = Bob Dole

    Prepare to be stomped..

    July 15, 2011 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  12. Stacy R.

    I'm all for a balanced budget. Let cut pay for all politicians and make them pay for their own health ins.. Mitt Romney has never wanted for anything. He has no idea what the American people are going thru.

    July 15, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  13. Publius Novus

    Mr. Mittens, you better start looking over your shoulder. Before you spend all you money attacking the President, you'd better take aim at the representative from MN-6. You've already lost Iowa and she'll be going to NH and SC next.

    July 15, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  14. Anonymous

    Hmm. Mitt getting his facts wrong once again? Not so sure I could ever cast my vote for a man so willfully ignorant as he has become. No doubt, though, he'll be getting a few more donations from the Obama haters with this line of attack. Works every time.

    July 15, 2011 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  15. Michigan Don

    Romney = Nixon.

    Carter is a real Christian. He cares about people and life; not just some feigned weeping for aborted babies like phooney Republicans do; but a genuine care for people at all stages of life. All Republican presidents did was hit the lecture for huge $$$$ fees.

    July 15, 2011 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  16. w l jones

    One thing nobody mention the two men so smart intelligent that you can see a halo over there head. A president does his job same as any other person.

    July 15, 2011 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  17. Wes B.

    It's true the Obama and Carter have a lot in common. Both have had to deal with terrible economies. And both get wrongly blamed for those terrible economies.

    Things that Carter said as president have turned out to be very true. Carter hinted that the U.S. needed to change some of its attitudes. And he couldn't have been more right. The main problems in the U.S. are related to our attitudes as a whole.

    Take energy/oil for example. We KNOW that it makes sense to get off of oil. But our attitude is unchanging. We like cars that go Vroom Vroom! And that's more important to us than doing the smart thing. Our priorities and attitudes are what will bring this country down.

    July 15, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  18. kat

    Romney is wrong, BHO is far worse tthan Carter.

    July 15, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  19. Sandy

    BWAAAAAAAAAAA. Romney is so funny!

    July 15, 2011 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  20. a6102658

    Rommey took a companies, fire everyone and moved it to another state, then told there fired workers if they want there job back, they would have to take a 25% cut and no benefits, there is job creator experience.

    July 15, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  21. The Real Tom Paine

    Romney= Job Killer

    And he will probably try to make a buck off of it, too.

    July 15, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  22. Fair is Fair

    "Past President Carter is helping people that are not able to help themselves by building homes for them to live in, bringing people of all races to build and get to know each other."

    Carter is and was an honorable man. He was, however, a terrible president.

    July 15, 2011 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  23. Poser

    This is nothing more than the same old talking points from the GOP. Yawn. They compare President Obama to President Carter because President Carter was a one term President. The words are slightly different but the meaning is the same.
    I suppose Romney will try the "he's not one of us" slant next.

    We're all experiencing the effects of tax breaks for the wealthy and deregulation on the economy. An acceleration of those policies is all the GOP is offering. Mitt is the poster child for corporate job slashing with his experience with Bain. He made himself richer in the process but being President is about helping others to improve their economic standing rather than self enrichment. The guy is a used business salesman.

    @vet in texas
    George Bush "helping the kids in Africa with aids" does count. I think it will be pretty difficult for people to cite much else though. With 9/11, anthrax, and the shoe bomber, "keeping us safe" doesn't count.

    July 15, 2011 10:59 am at 10:59 am |

    Obama can't be compared to jimmy Carter......they are nothing alike. One things for sure, Romney is picking a fight w/ someone who will, and can, fight back. This Presisdent has had many successes for America. HC reform, wall street reform, killing bin laden, just to name a few. When the economy picks up, that criticism will really be a farse....Obama 2012!!!

    July 15, 2011 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  25. Vosky

    I wont be surprised if Romney gives a direct opposite statement tomorrow morning. And this guy is supposed to be GOP's savior? count me out of the deceived!!

    July 15, 2011 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
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