(CNN) – Rep. Darrell Issa, a Mitt Romney supporter, on Monday said the experience of closing failing companies and trimming excess waste as a private equity executive could help the presumptive Republican nominee if he becomes president.
Issa's comments came after several weeks of attacks from Democrats, who have painted Romney as a job killing corporate raider for his tenure as CEO of Bain Capital, the firm he founded in 1984. President Barack Obama's campaign, along with his aligned super PAC, both aired television commercials featuring workers at companies that were closed after being taken over by Bain.
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Issa was asked by CNN National Political Correspondent Jim Acosta whether Romney could better communicate his record at Bain to voters.
"You're going to have some casualties, but that's exactly what we need in Washington and why I'm so delighted to support Gov. Romney," Issa said on CNN's "The Situation Room." "He understands that our government has gotten too big, there are agencies that need to be reformed, closed, combined, something the president has talked about but hasn't done."
Romney has not stated publically if he would close any federal agencies as president. According to NBC News and the Wall Street Journal, he told supporters at a campaign fund-raiser in April he would make the Department of Education "a heck of a lot smaller" and would consider eliminating the Department of Housing and Urban Development. He has also said he would cut funding to the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
On Monday, Issa, a Republican who serves as chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said there were numerous other places in the government a president could look to make cuts.
"There's got to be a way to take money out of GSA and other agencies that are throwing fancy parties and make it available for the essential services that the American people want," Issa said. "It's not nice, it's not easy to lay people off, but it's the right thing to do if you've got a bloated government. That's what Gov. Romney promises to do."
Issa said Romney, whose tax returns indicate a personal wealth in the hundreds of millions, should not be disqualified in voters' mind because of his fortune.
"We have had wealthy people who have served our country in the past," Issa, himself worth more than $200 million, said. "The American people want successful people, people who know how to create wealth. Remember, America's greatness is based on creating wealth like the rest of the world has never known, and then making sure it's shared throughout a middle class and even the underprivileged. That's what makes America special, anyone can go from the middle class or even poorer and ultimately end up like Mitt Romney, a successful person running for president and giving back."
CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.