Washington (CNN) – Republicans' attempts to target disillusioned supporters of President Barack Obama won't work, a top adviser to the president said Sunday.
"I don't think that there is voter disappointment," Robert Gibbs, an Obama campaign senior adviser, said on CNN's "State of the Union." "The voters understand that we have been through a traumatic economic experience in the country, unlike anything that we have ever seen."
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Throughout last week's three-day convention, Republicans repeatedly argued that despite Obama's appealing personal attributes, voters shouldn't feel bad about voting against him. They specifically went after voters who supported Obama in 2008, arguing his soaring rhetoric and lofty campaign promises haven't led to an improved economic outlook.
"President Obama is the kind of politician who puts promises on the record, and then calls that the record," Paul Ryan, the GOP vice-presidential nominee, said in his speech. "But we are four years into this presidency. The issue is not the economy as Barack Obama inherited it, not the economy as he envisions it, but this economy as we are living it."
Mitt Romney followed suit, saying in his speech that Obama's promise of "hope and change" had a powerful appeal, but that four years later had amounted to little.
"If you felt that excitement when you voted for Barack Obama, shouldn't you feel that way now that he's President Obama?" Romney asked. "You know there's something wrong with the kind of job he's done as president when the best feeling you had was the day you voted for him."
Gibbs, speaking to CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley, said no one in Obama's campaign "is sitting up here saying this is 2008" in terms of voter enthusiasm.
"What has happened since the election in 2008 and right now, again, is this huge economic calamity caused by a series of bad decisions that were made before the president ever got there," Gibbs continued.
He said recent Republican economic proposals are simply a new version of a plan that has proven to be flawed.
"In Tampa, we saw nothing but insults and old slogans and tired old ideas," Gibbs said. "In Charlotte, the president is going to focus on a plan to provide the middle class in this country necessary and needed security by investing in research and innovation."
The former White House press secretary was echoing the president's remarks in Iowa on Saturday, when the Democratic incumbent told a crowd at a campaign rally that the Republican convention might as well have been viewed on a black and white TV.
"It was a rerun. We'd seen it before," Obama said of the Republicans' economic agenda.
Obama's speech formally accepting the Democratic presidential nomination, scheduled for Thursday, will contain essential elements that Gibbs claimed Romney omitted.
"The Mitt Romney speech was about two people: Mitt Romney and Barack Obama," Gibbs said. "President Obama's speech will be about the 300 million people who live in America."