June 19th, 2012
09:09 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama to Romney campaign: 'We have one president at a time'

(CNN) - President Barack Obama on Tuesday chastised Mitt Romney and his presidential campaign while in Mexico at a conference of world leaders.

"I would point out that we have one president at a time and one administration at a time and I think traditionally the notion has been that America's political differences end at the water's edge," he told reporters at the G-20 conference in Los Cabos, Mexico.

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He made the comments in response to an op-ed written by a senior economic adviser to Romney's campaign that was published earlier this month in a German newspaper. Obama and other members of the G-20 gathered to discuss ways to boost the worldwide economic recovery, with particular focus on troubles in the eurozone.

"I think sometimes back home there's a desire to superimpose whatever ideological arguments are taking place at home onto a very complicated situation in Europe," Obama said.

Obama suggested the Romney adviser, Glen Hubbard, had waded too far out from the heated political battles of the 2012 campaign.

Hubbard wrote earlier this month that "the advice of the U.S. government regarding solutions to the crisis is misleading, for Europe and especially for Germany."

At the time, Obama's campaign responded with a statement saying the Romney campaign "attempted to undermine America's foreign policy."

During Tuesday's press conference, Obama affirmed his position in the austerity versus growth debate, and referenced the jobs legislation he sent to Congress last September.

"I think that there's no doubt that all the countries in Europe at this point recognize the need for growth strategies inside of Europe that are consistent with fiscal consolidation plans," he said. "And by the way, that's exactly what I think the United States should be thinking about.

"The essence of the plan that I presented back in September is how do we increase growth and jobs now while providing clarity in terms of how we reduce our debt medium- and long-term," he continued, "and I think that's the right recipe generally, not just for us, but across the board."

Foreign policy is often seen as a weakness for many who seek the presidency as a non-incumbent. To bolster their foreign policy chops, some travel and meet with world leaders. While campaigning for the presidency in 2008, Obama gave a high-profile speech in Berlin.

- CNN's Steve Brusk contributed to this report

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Yes, Glenn Hubbard went too far in his op-ed, and so did Romney who criticized President Obama and Putin
    while the two were meeting in Mexico. He did it on the same day they were talking.
    Another example of the weakness of Romney and his total ineptness to be President of the United States.
    To disrespect any U.S. President while they are out of the Country working on very sensitive problems
    is outrageous.
    Romney is, without a doubt, the worst candidate I have ever seen. He is not the leader of the Republican
    Party, he is their puppet. He takes nothing seriously, because he knows he doesn't have to make the
    hard decisions. Somebody else will tell him what to do. His total lack of conviction on anything is a very
    dangerous game he is playing and he needs to be held responsible for his inability to answer questions.
    I am surprised at what a wimp he truly is.

    June 19, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  2. valwayne

    What a disastrous meeting with Putin, and what a worthless wasted Press Conference! Putin after their meeting could barely conceal his contempt for Obama. Obama's Presidency has failed and things just get worse and worse!

    June 19, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  3. Dan J

    So Obama is claiming Romney is jumping the gun, essentially. And that is disrespectful, undermining, etc. So when Obama debuted his candidacy seal back in 2008, and it was a near match of the official presidential seal... what was that then?

    June 19, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  4. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Stay strong Mr. President!

    June 19, 2012 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  5. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Romney isn't the first Republican to critize Obama when he was overseas representing the US as president. I doubt that it will be the last. Way to break with tradition.

    June 19, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  6. chuck weidemann

    Send Romney to Germany or France or to Russia!!!! What do you think the result of those trips would be? Scary to think about ....

    June 19, 2012 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  7. ovrnite

    “I think traditionally the notion has been that America’s political differences end at the water’s edge”

    -President Obama

    It's like fighting with your spouse at home and then continuing the fight on your job. You look really dysfunctional, pathetic, and uncontrolled. Sad thing is this; once the two of you kiss and make up, the job remains unforgiving. Once we start playing dirty politics on the global stage, the same thing will happen to our political leaders and no future president will be able to remove that ugly, indelible memory.

    June 19, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  8. Michael Wheeler

    Obama, want some cheese with that whine? Oh, I guess he probably doesn't want any cheese after his Wisconsin problems...

    June 19, 2012 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  9. Alan

    For Obama to lecture anyone on economics is just insanely stupid. I really thought Obama could not be more clueless and narcissistic. I was wrong.

    June 19, 2012 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |

    Republican bafoon party is trying to undermine Obamas European policy as well as his USA policy,jobs and anything and everything .this is harming the USA and is going to end for good in Nov ,when romney and the republican bafoon party go down in flames for good !!!!!

    June 20, 2012 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  11. moose

    Mitt just thinks he can do anything cause he is rich and a mormon

    June 20, 2012 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  12. Ant

    All Mitt does is pointing fingers on other guy, but not even his own plan for tomorrow. Why he can't show his plan?

    June 20, 2012 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  13. Investment Advisor

    Sounds as if President Obama is a little intimidated by this event. Free speech is an American treasure unless of course the POTUS doesn't seem to agree with what is said. Thicken up that skin Mr. President.

    June 20, 2012 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  14. Thomas

    Romney campaign "attempted to undermine America's foreign policy."

    Romney's been running for President for eight years. In his mind , he is President .

    Or maybe a Mormon King ?

    June 20, 2012 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  15. Hey Romney!

    We wanna see you on Meet the Press. Get an idea of who the Real Romney is! Where you stand on issues important to USofA!

    June 20, 2012 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  16. Are you kidding me?

    Thank you Mr. President. Please put the wannabes and obstructionist in their place and on notice. They are to focus on their jobs for the terms they are elected to serve nothing more.

    June 20, 2012 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  17. enuff

    Of course Romneys goal is to superimpose his strategies over the US. AND MAKE THE WORLD THINK he's already elected to the position. That's why he won't shut up about Russia. If he can sabotage Obama's attempt at diplomacy and push us into a war, he can blame it all on Obama. In the meantime, he is showing total disrespect for the nation itself by trying to already take over. This is what dictatrs do. We have one president in office at a time. there is no room for a hostile takeover attempt. This is not a business and he should not be allowed to try and "win" a board of directors by sabotaging the CEO.

    June 20, 2012 01:21 am at 1:21 am |
  18. Jan930

    Romney has the nerve.

    June 20, 2012 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  19. Marry

    The President is a true leader, respected by our allies and enemies! They all recognize that he does not shoot first and ask questions later but that he thinks, is interested in the subjects and wants to develop solutions together with others.

    Romney (and the GOP) with their really dump remarks are already seen as a rehash of the Bush years: American as simple minded bully driven by greed. Nobody sincerely working for solutions and progress wants to bother to talk to them. They remember the Bush years and how that worked out nationally and internationally: Lies, wars and financial collapse the US and the world suffered from.

    June 20, 2012 02:26 am at 2:26 am |
  20. RS, CA

    That was the most pitiful presidential press conference I have ever heard! What the heck did that man say that made even an iota of a difference in the scheme of things?

    June 20, 2012 02:55 am at 2:55 am |
  21. david

    this is to obama mitt romney is my president now not you

    June 20, 2012 03:54 am at 3:54 am |
  22. Roy

    Obama and the democrat congress reduced the deficit by 8.6% in fiscal year 2010 from 1.4 to 1.3 trillion. Source: Congressional Budget Office (search "cbo doc11936" for proof). Republicans won the house in Nov 2010 and forced their tax cuts for billionaires on America..now the deficit is projected to rise from 1.3 to 1.5 trillion in FY 2011. (Source: cbo doc12039)

    Republican policies: Failed ‘trickle down’ policies, reckless deregulations with no oversight, allowing Wall Street to concoct Ponzi schemes, the unnecessary Iraq War, tax breaks for rich/millionaires, subsidies for oil companies, unpaid prescriptions plans, etc. slowest job growth in over 50 years. Bush left Obama with a shattered economy, a trillion dollar DEFICIT, and two unfunded wars. If you smash a window and wait 2 weeks for someone else to clean it up, that period of time doesn't erase the fact that you smashed it to begin with. . . . . .When President Obama took office the country was losing approx 800,000 jobs per month, and the Obama Administration turned the job deficit into a job SURPLUS adding more jobs each month. SEE chart-of-the-day-jobs-lost-in-the-bush-and-obama-administration-2010-2 . . . The country and economy is better since President Obama was elected, as evidenced by the recent 27 straight months of JOB growth, 4.3 million created. He also rescued U.S auto industry (GM now #1 worldwide in sales, profitability), but Romney/GOP wanted to block this rescue. America is moving forward with successfully out of the ditch, and it would be ‘suicide’ to go back into the ditch by voting for Republicans with their ALREADY PROVEN FAILED POLICIES, which Romney supports along with the Ryan Budget, which is more extreme – Bush/Cheney policies on STEROIDS. Further, he pledged his allegiance to Grover Norquist (NOT to U.S. citizens) by signing Norquist’s pledge, and 17 out of 25 of Romney‘s close advisors‘ are from the Bush/Cheney team – Republicans, Democrats, and Independents, would be masochists/insane to take the U.S down the DISASTROUS Bush/Cheney path AGAIN – Voters should vote these Obstructionists Republicans (with their failed policies) out of office.

    June 20, 2012 04:56 am at 4:56 am |
  23. scott

    IF Obama would act and behave like a President, instead of a thug, these problems would not rise.

    June 20, 2012 04:57 am at 4:57 am |
  24. Republicans - "The Not Intended to Be Factually Accurate" Party

    It is the PRESS that should have pressed the ROMNEY campaign on this un-American behavior.

    It is the Press that should demand a straight answer from Romney on does he or does he not plan to support the DREAM act and the President`s Executive order on a pathway for latino immigrants.

    June 20, 2012 06:08 am at 6:08 am |
  25. Marie MD

    Hey hubbard, you don't know what was really said because your sorry excuse for a president is NOT THE PRESIDENT and if Americans wake up before November and we SEE THE BISHOP'S TAXES FOR 2011 HE WILL NEVER BE PRESIDENT.
    He is a businessman after all and only ran to say he "worked" in government even though he left MA in worse shape that it was when he was governor.

    June 20, 2012 06:33 am at 6:33 am |
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