Bain mindset could work in Washington, says Issa
May 28th, 2012
06:36 PM ET
10 years ago

Bain mindset could work in Washington, says Issa

(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.

Also see:

Gingrich's presidential advice: Raise money

Wisconsin recall's a 'test run,' DNC chair says

Giuliani gets over ego and praises Romney

Filed under: 2012 • Darrell Issa • Mitt Romney
soundoff (110 Responses)
  1. Barth Gimble

    "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.."

    Nice. Well, since you believe in that, you volunteer to be the first "casualty".

    May 28, 2012 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  2. Dave

    Of course it will help Romney. Look at the difference. Romney saved companies without government help. On the other hand, Obama has used billions of dollars to bailout GM and Solyndra. What is the result? They still went bankrupt and people lost their jobs. I would take the Romney option anyday.

    May 28, 2012 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  3. AmandaInTN

    "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."


    May 28, 2012 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  4. Charlie from the North

    The national economy would be in full recovery if it were not for these tea-party governors in the states where they are in charge cutting and slashing. If Romney does the same on the federal level we will not recover at all.

    May 28, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  5. bibleverse1

    If Romney would say he want to go after waste and excess I would agree but he wants wholesale demolition of EPA, DOE, and HUD. EPA is necessary business, has proven that clear air, water, and soil is not in the best interest of the business business is profit driven. Where there is no profit there is no business. DOE needs reform in the way they go about their business they can be run with business like methods and results for students would be better in terms of competing globally, our students have become too lazy. HUD could be changed but not done away with quickly (4 years quickly) Romney really hasnt said HOW he will accomplish the goals he has set in any way shape or form .

    May 28, 2012 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  6. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    This guy is a wealthy crook!

    May 28, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  7. Hawk in Texas

    Yeah! I would just bet i could see romney giving it back. republicans lyingest people on earth.

    May 28, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  8. T'sah from Virginia

    ►Bain mindset could work in Washington, says Issa◄
    Oh, the PUBS speak now, but when Perry/ginGRINCH&Santorum were in the MIXER...
    …Dogging Romney and his dealings with BAIN; how he DIDN’T really create jobs
    NOTHING was said then but now they’ll Etch-A-FLIP, turn it around – Dang, what a bunch of SNOBS!!

    Obama 2012 – The Only Trusted Way Forward!!

    May 28, 2012 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  9. One United

    Bold words for a draft dodger who can find it so easily to send troops off to fight in the wars that he and his five sons avoided at all costs

    May 28, 2012 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  10. migeli

    Romney said Obama doesn't believe in America but Romney is the guy who keeps his money in Switzerland.Explain that contradiction!And what about some more tax returns from Romney not just one year.

    May 28, 2012 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  11. King

    Jain mindset is to make a fee people rich by minimizing the cost, this means cut cost by hiring robots, and computer systems instead of slow middle class.workers, then send companies to China and India, for none existing taxes and slave labor, affectively killing the middle class. Trickle down doesn't come to America anymore, not when you've got competing China and India fighting for every scrap, I wonder how American middle class stand up to China. Slave labor wages.

    May 28, 2012 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  12. jay

    Is this the same bozo that is stalling postal reform in the house because he does not have enough
    votes to pass it?
    He shouldnt be giving advice to anyone.

    May 28, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  13. Redleg56

    Is this the same Issa that was proven to be a serial liar about his military service?

    May 28, 2012 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  14. Freddie Nerk

    What a joke. Rabid Corporate greed in Washington? Issa should just resign if that is all he has to contribute.

    May 28, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  15. Steven Colo

    So does that mean we close down Congress if it can't get anything done, like appropriate money to cover things we already bought?

    May 28, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  16. sheila kind

    Yep, that's just what we need. Less government, less restrictions on corporations to do whatever the heck it is they do, less regulations of education, less art, less humanity, less, less, less......but a lot more people out of work. Yeah, exactly!!! That's what Bain does best.

    May 28, 2012 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  17. Paul Falduto

    It's not Romney's wealth that is the problem, it is the fact that he can't relate to the average guy. Other rich men could, such as FDR and JFK. You either get it or your don't and Mitt doesn't get it.

    May 28, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  18. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    This could be dangeous to have people who care little for jobs here in the US and don't mind ripping companies apart. The point is that government has been picking winners and losers, but tried to keep things here. Capital companies like Bain don't care where the jobs are and who gets them should the company continue. It isn't what a president should be thinking.

    May 28, 2012 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  19. I can see Russia from my house

    Oh nice. We need more people in DC who steal people's retirement money and send it to offshore accounts.

    Romney 2012 (if you want your money to be stolen)!

    May 28, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  20. george S

    The biggest problem with Romney is that he has been really successful at creating wealth...For himself and his investors.

    For the companies and employees he "restructured"...not so much.

    He has been miserable at being a so-called, "job creator".

    When he served in his one and only elected postion, as Governor of Massachusetts, he increased the States per capita debt by 1-2% and was ranked 47 out of 50 in job creation.

    Lastly, he served only one four year term and at the end of his one and only term, he left office with an approval rating of 34%.

    Horrible.....Do we really want this guy to our POTUS?

    May 28, 2012 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  21. Michael Siever

    Says the richest person in Congress...

    May 28, 2012 11:43 pm at 11:43 pm |
  22. ttcaros

    That mindset is what caused the recession and created unemployment.

    May 28, 2012 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  23. Herculean

    Yes, and the "casualties," as Issa put it, would be borne solely by the working class. The major shareholders would largely escape damage. And as for eliminating HUD and the National Endowment for the Arts and cutting back on the the Department of Education, that would barely make a dent in the federal but it would score points with conservations, especially the Tea Party types. They've been after these agencies for years.

    May 28, 2012 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  24. julien vergara

    Thats right. You canot be succesful if u dont do it right plus grace

    May 28, 2012 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  25. Ideas, Ideals, not ideologies

    Good idea! Let's run the government like a corporation. It's safe to eliminate the EPA. After all, polluters will do a better job looking after the environment. Next, cut the dpt of education while the US lack a national standard. Then, turn social security over to Wall st and sell medicare to the big pharma since they cost too much. Oh while we're at it, let cut taxes for ' job creators'. ah! We'll be much better after that.

    May 29, 2012 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
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