Top Obama aide focuses criticism on Romney
October 30th, 2011
12:14 PM ET
2 years ago

Top Obama aide focuses criticism on Romney

(CNN) - President Barack Obama says he's not yet paying attention to the Republican presidential race, but his senior adviser on Sunday singled out Mitt Romney for criticism when asked about the GOP contenders.

David Plouffe, Obama's campaign manager in 2008 and now a senior adviser to the president, told NBC's "Meet the Press" that Romney's national poll numbers, which are consistently in the low 20% range, showed that most Republican voters were looking elsewhere for a candidate.

"He has no core," Plouffe said of Romney, citing issues such as climate change, gay rights and abortion on which he accused the former Massachusetts governor of shifting to the right politically to try to satisfy conservatives.

"You get the sense with Mitt Romney that, you know, if he thought it was good to say the sky was green and the grass was blue to win an election, he'd say it," Plouffe added.

In response, Romney's campaign said Plouffe's comments were an attempt to distract from what it called "the historic loss of middle-class jobs that has occurred" during Obama's presidency.

"Americans won't be fooled by false and negative attacks – they know that President Obama has failed, and they are eager to replace him with a leader like Mitt Romney who can turn around our struggling economy," Romney spokesman Ryan Williams said.

On the NBC program, Plouffe took a decidedly less critical approach when asked about Herman Cain, who finished atop a new Des Moines Register poll in Iowa with 23% support. His only comment was that Cain, a former business executive, seemed "to have tapped into something."

Regardless of who is leading the GOP race, Plouffe said, all the Republican contenders were offering the same policies that led to the economic recession dating back to the Bush administration.


Filed under: 2012 • David Plouffe • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. Four and The Door

    Regardless of who is leading the GOP race, Plouffe said, all the Republican contenders were offering the same policies that led to the economic recession dating back to the Bush administration.
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________
    His generalization here is a clear indication that he has no argument when it comes to specific policies. I have news for Plouffe and Obama. They are not running against George W. Bush in 2012. GWB was decisively defeated in 2008 by a problem Obama will never have to worry about. Term limits.

    October 30, 2011 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  2. NVa Native

    Romney is the only one of the Repub candidates who trys to not say crazy stuff, the rest look like the class clown who doesn't realize after graduating to the next level the silly crazy stuff will hurt them.
    And there's so much to criticize Romney on with his taking opposite positions on every issue he's open on every issue just depends on which video clip you want to use – “before or after”
    Talk about GOP trying to slander HOPE, GOP is hopeless!

    October 30, 2011 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  3. jerry

    obama says he is not paying attention to the top race...now, who is stupid enough to believe that? When it comes to campaigning bo is king...that is about all he is king at.

    October 30, 2011 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  4. kat

    Where does BHO find all these people who are as ignorant as he is? Anybody but BHO 2012, except maybe Paul, he seems to be about as stupid as the clown we have now.

    October 30, 2011 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  5. vic , nashville ,tn

    Obama administration must focus on economy not on Romney

    George Will , Rush Limbaugh will take care of Romney

    October 30, 2011 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    When will the right wingnuts realize, that Obama is running against the failed conservative policies, and the disasters they cause?

    October 30, 2011 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  7. Gob

    anyone else see the flip flopping as a sign the man would actually compromise?

    October 30, 2011 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  8. Peace

    Does anyone out there know why Romney is avoiding interviews with the so-called "Fair and Balance News Network"?
    This man is trying hard to let the time passby so quickly. Who does trust this man?

    October 30, 2011 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  9. manhandler

    The Republicans see the writing on the wall,,,,none of these clowns is electable...not the pizza king...not the cardboard man... not Paul....not bible thumpin' Bachman, and certainly not the holy Texas cowboy...been that one, did that one. Obama's not perfect but he must be turning cartwheels in the oval office over these pathetic clowns.

    October 30, 2011 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  10. T'sah from Virginia

    Why isn't Chris Christie coming to the rescue of Romney??? I mean, he did endorse him and VOWED that Romney was going to be the next president – NO DOUBT ABOUT IT!!! He is also the next "Great Pub Hope" and what he says, is supposed to GO!!!

    Obama 2012

    October 30, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  11. GOP = Greed Over People

    "Regardless of who is leading the GOP race, Plouffe said, all the Republican contenders were offering the same policies that led to the economic recession dating back to the Bush administration"

    Amen, Brother Plouffe!!!.

    October 30, 2011 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  12. Mike Dallas

    "You get the sense with Mitt Romney that, you know, if he thought it was good to say the sky was green and the grass was blue to win an election, he'd say it," Plouffe added"

    And there is plenty of video to back up that claim, no wonder Huntsman called him a weathervane.

    Weathervane Willard, I like it!!

    October 30, 2011 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  13. emma

    Romney's lack of centeredness on what he believes is a facade. The man knows what he wants to do as President and that is to enrich the already wealthy and make us into a corporate-reigning culture. Oops, we are already that.

    October 30, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  14. Independent from NH

    @ Four and the Door

    You couldn't have said it any better !!!

    October 30, 2011 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  15. tigerakabj

    Four and the Door – His generalization here is a clear indication that he has no argument when it comes to specific policies. I have news for Plouffe and Obama. They are not running against George W. Bush in 2012. GWB was decisively defeated in 2008 by a problem Obama will never have to worry about. Term limits.
    -------------------------------------------
    (I'm trying to figure out where in the stands I want to knock this softball).

    You've got to be kidding me. No specifics? Ok. Here's some specifics:

    1. President Obama, like he said he would, would track down and wipe out Bin Laden. Check.
    2. Stopped 700,000 jobs/month loss (from January 2009) and turned it 19 straight months into private sector job creation (i.e. with specifics on clean energy, education, and healthcare investments)
    3. Has ended the Iraq war that Bush, with false information he and Cheney have yet to pay for, started, saving us billions and many more lives.
    4. He is winding down the Afghanistan War, also saving us billions and many more lives. (How's that for reducing our deficit and putting us on a better foundation of fiscal health the GOP destroyed when they turned Clinton's surplus into record deficit by passing 2 unpaid tax cuts, staring 2 unpaid wars, unpaid pharma giveway, and crashing our economy through continued and abrubt deregulation of the big banks).
    5. Passed healthcare reform, reform that 7 presidents fought for, that we desperately needed (i.e., rising healthcare costs), that the GOP said was "too long in paper writing, too much to explain, not discussed enough")
    6. Passed the START treaty as well as getting countries like Chile and Ukraine to give up their nuclear material (thereby making the world safer)

    George Bush and the GOP were defeated in 2008 because the American people understood these folks crashed the economy, lied us into war, destroyed our fiscal standing, etc., and just overall weren't pulling their weight in power.

    What does the GOP stand for? What are their specifics to fix everything (that haven't already been proven utter failures under Bush i.e., tax cuts for the rich, deregulation)? What accomplishments are THEY running on?

    Here's one specific President Obama and the Dems have tried to pass: American Jobs Act. You want to know what's in it? Google it and look it up on Whitehouse.gov. This is one solution America needs right now, a solution that the GOP is set on seeing does not pass.

    October 30, 2011 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  16. sara

    One of the smartest, classy politco around. Romney doesn't have a "core"....he is gutless, indecisive and a Flip Flopper. Has been for the last 15 years. He went to the left when he was defeated for the Senate seat....went conservative during 2008 and now is "pancaking" all over the place. He would sell out his mama to be president...Scary!

    October 30, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |