Obama: 'We won't be apologizing'
July 15th, 2012
05:19 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama: 'We won't be apologizing'

(CNN) – Mitt Romney should not wait up for an "I'm sorry" phone call from President Obama after Democrats questioned the veracity of Romney's statements surrounding his departure from Bain Capital.

Romney originally called for Obama to apologize Friday, saying on ABC that the president "sure as heck ought to say he's sorry for the kinds of attacks that are coming from his team."

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"No, we won't be apologizing," Obama said in response. His remarks came during an interview airing Sunday on CNN affiliate WAVY, based in Norfolk, Virginia.

Last week, Democrats seized upon reports that Romney was listed as Bain Capital's CEO after 1999, when he has repeatedly said he left the private equity firm.

The significance of Romney's date of departure centers on companies acquired by Bain that later shipped jobs overseas. Romney claims he left the company before those decisions were made, but Democrats point to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission that indicate Romney was still listed as the firm's CEO.

In his interview Sunday, Obama equated Romney's request for an apology as a political game.

"Sometimes these games are played during political campaigns," Obama said. "Understand what the issue is here. Mr. Romney claims that he's Mr. Fix-It for the economy because of his business experience, so I think voters, entirely legitimately, want to know what exactly was that business experience."

Obama said there was "nothing wrong" with a business mission of maximizing profits for investors, but drew the line at outsourcing jobs to countries with cheaper labor costs.

"That company was investing in other companies that The Washington Post called pioneers of outsourcing," Obama said. "And he's now claiming, 'Well I wasn't there at the time,' except he files an SEC listing that says he was CEO, chairman and president of the company. As president of the United States, one of the things I've learned is that anything that happens on my watch is my responsibility. That's what people expect."

In the interview, Obama waved off his rival's grievance that he's running an overwhelmingly negative campaign. The Romney campaign released an ad Sunday called "Hope and Change?" questioning whether the president's 2008 campaign slogan had proved disappeared in 2012.

"You don't hear me complaining a lot about what's been said about me," Obama said. "And Lord knows a lot's been said about me over the past three and a half years. I understand the nature of our democracy has always been a little bit messy like this."

Obama also said he was glad to see Romney speaking last week at the NAACP, and that the booing that met Romney's pledge to repeal the president's health care law indicated his rival was willing to speak to all Americans.

"It doesn't sound like it was too severe," Obama said of the audience response. "My understanding is that some on his campaign said, 'we expected that.' I think the truth is I'm glad to see he's competing for every vote, just like I am. That's the way it should work. I don't think any constituency is a lock for anybody."

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (97 Responses)
  1. Debra From Georgia

    That is right. Remember your book Mitt, "NO APOLOGY"

    July 15, 2012 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  2. California

    Unless it's to our enemies and foreign countries.

    July 15, 2012 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  3. Pete

    Romney better expect more from the incumbent,its not going to get any easier I can tell ya! If Romney would only come clean,but if he does he'll never be even close to being electible ,he's that dirty business wise and these ignorent minions called voters know exactly that but are willing to take a chance over the incumbent.Remember these are the voters who put Bush in the WH,not once but twice,that's really ignorent if you ask me but they're in denile politically any way, so what!!If the incumbent can put with the party of "NO" for over 31/2 years. If Romney can put with this political bashing for another 5 months,it'll get easier after the debates,than he might quit,that would be nice,Romney is not used to it and it shows!! Romney needs the practice and its Pres.Obama who will be his instructor,get used to it republicans,thin skinned politicians need not apply!!

    July 15, 2012 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  4. Hey Mittens, got any more of those 100K jobs at Bain for doing nothing? 'Call Me, Maybe?'

    It is not a "lie" if it is the truth, and many media outlets have verified that Mr. 1%'s signature is indeed on SEC documents dated in 2001 and 2002 stating he was the sole proprietor of Bain, now his "bane", during the time frame he now states he was not active at "Bane".

    The SEC documents are in the public domain, therefore, it is not a "negative" personal attack on Mr. 1%.

    Obviously, Cayman Cash Robme has something to hide or he would show his tax returns from '99-02 and show us he did NOT receive a 100K Bain salary for each of those years and put this issue to bed definitely and permanently.

    But no, Team Robme only feigns "disgust" and continues to deflect.

    Suits me, 'cuz I think this is the GOP's "October surprise" and the longer Mittens refuses to shine sunshine on the issue, the more the fungus festers and makes him look guilty at most, of committing a felony in 2001 or at the least, lying to the American people in 2012.

    But most of all, remember McCrypt saw 23 years of Mitten's tax returns during the vetting for VP, and decided to go all "mavricky" with the tag team of Geezer/Gidget in 2008!!!

    July 15, 2012 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  5. Grow up already...

    Sure Mitt... Just like you apologized to Santorium, and Gingrich, and Perry, and Bachman, and... What a sissy you are!!

    July 15, 2012 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  6. polopaula

    I would have been dismayed had there been an apology. How often have we heard Mitt's Bain CEO experience cast against the President's experience as a "community organizer". Truth about one's experience is a very important component to the selection of a President. We can be certain that every second of President Obama's life has been dissected.

    July 15, 2012 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  7. s.positive

    Ignore them President Obama. The Lord and the majority of America is with you. The will feel more heat as they deserve as November nears. GIVE then HELL with the truth of course...

    July 15, 2012 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  8. tangledthorns

    If Obama had any class he'd apologize for his campaign suggesting Romney is a felon.

    July 15, 2012 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  9. AaronT3

    Willard (Etch-A-Sketch) Romney under oath said he was still involved with the operations of Bain Capital to prove his residency in MA so that he could run for Governor. So either he lied under oath to the SEC, or he's lying now. The pay and stock dividends he received from 1999 to 2002, would tell any reasonable person he was being paid for something....

    July 15, 2012 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  10. 1+1=2

    It's becoming obvious that Mitt has serious issues. First he lies about how many jobs he outsourced , than he's hiding his tax returns. What's up Mitt????

    July 15, 2012 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  11. yogi

    It's about time that Romney is called out on the endless whining, all he has done so far is only Obama this Obama that. Romney has offered NO ideas NO solutions, why not? Simple because he has NO idea how to create jobs, HOW to improve the economy. His business experience is extremely shallow: going around to apply templates, and outsourcing with only one goal: To make MONEY on the backs of anyone that doesn't fit that goal. Yes, I know it is capitalism but also one of the worst kind, money first people last.

    July 15, 2012 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  12. M. Byrd

    Romney has been painted into a corner and he can't come out without leaving foot prints. Nobody ran more negative ads during the primary than willard. He bought the nomination. He's in the majors now and can't handle a little pressure. If the bain mess isn't true, then simply prove it!

    July 15, 2012 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  13. andy

    Really? He doesn't complain about what the republicans say sit him? Ha ha...sad to think that politics were supposed to change under this potus.

    July 15, 2012 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  14. bcm

    Romney's campaign has told so many lies and tried to hide so many truths from the American people. I am truly disgusted everytime I look at that man.

    July 15, 2012 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  15. Darryl Miler

    Contract Law 101... Governor Romney is either signed as a false document at Bain Capital in his wods: he admitted to
    He was an Officers who make false certifications will face personal civil and criminal liability. Unlike civil penalties, which are usually only monetary, criminal penalties could involve incarceration. In the current environment, the SEC could well seek criminal penalties if it believes that a certification was knowingly false. Officers required to sign certifications must recognize the seriousness of the undertaking. Is this they person we want as President He should be arrested by his own admission.

    July 15, 2012 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  16. jdw.lbc

    So let's look at this; Romney initially claims to have left Bain Capital in Feb 1999, abandoning all managerial and oversight responsibilities typically held by the Sole Shareholder, Sole Director, CEO & President. During this two year stretch of his disassociation, in which he indicates via SEC filing he remained as Sole Shareholder, Sole Director, CEO & President, on an extended leave, there were apparently no Board of Director's Meetings or Shareholder's Meetings; and mind you, there can be no Proxy vote when there are no other Directors or Shareholders. In the meantime, Mitt continued to draw a 100K+ salary annually for '00-'02. Throughout this time period of no oversight, his entire families entire investment was placed at total risk. Kind of irresponsible and unbelievable, don't you think? Now, close your eyes and imagine the response this would receive if it was President BO with this exposure...enough said!

    July 15, 2012 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  17. Free Man in the Republic of Texas

    "WE" are the OBAMA Cartel
    "WE" do not apologize.

    "WE" will TELL you; and you will like it.

    July 15, 2012 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  18. Romney needs to stop whining and start getting his tax returns together

    Not only does he need to show his tax returns as all POTUS candidates do, he needs to come clean on when he really left Bain capital- the SEC filings show him there as last as 2001. He's been caught in a lie and everyone knows it. I think this is a big deal and could cost him the election. He can not be trusted.

    July 15, 2012 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  19. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    How pathetic of Romney to ask the President to apologize, why, because he knows the President is the only person that can make him whole again. Oh my Mr. President just be nice and just apologize to Romney and that way he won't have to show his tax returns and that he lied to the SEC and we can forget about his Swiss accounts, Cayman Island accounts, Bermuda Corp., and outsourced jobs to China. Just apologize Mr. President, that will cleanup Romney's lies because we won't accept it from anyone but you Mr. President. NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.

    July 15, 2012 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  20. DB

    Obama doesn't need to apologize for questioning whether Romney's business experience is solid and noteworthy.
    But he should apologize that when he actually knows the facts about Romney's business experience, he still can't grasp how successful he is. It underlies the great lack Obama's understanding of the business world. This was clearly shown during the TARP/stimulus days, when he lets his business buddies make all the decisions for him, and let them push him into decisions that favored THEM, not the country. It's easy to be a puppet until someone starts questioning you directly.

    July 15, 2012 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  21. bill

    Romney is untruthful and a whiner. According to him the President has made a world tour apologizing (untrue), now Romney whines about being left out.

    July 15, 2012 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  22. chuck weidemann

    Obama is a grown-up....Romney needs to take a few notes. This is not Newt,Perry or Bachmann.....Need any more explanation??? Just be transparent and release your tax returns dating back to 1999...Obama only had to show papers back to birth!!!!

    July 15, 2012 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  23. Squigman

    Apologize for what, telling the truth? Maybe that's what's wrong with our nation. We believe the liars, and vilify the truth. We look and listen to the purveyors of convoluted logic, and treat it as gospel. Most of this tainted vision was brought your way by those already in control of all other aspects of your lives. They just want you to become more and more dependent on they're utterances, so you'll be easier to control and corral if the need arises. WAKE-UP.

    July 15, 2012 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  24. Marty, FL

    It would be non-stop criticism if the roles were reversed with Pres. Obama not releasing his tax returns to prove there was no connection to Bain outsourcing and taking responsibility as CEO. Romney can't have it both ways.

    The president was simply stating what was reported and owes no apology for it. Romney's secrecy and dishonesty are finally catching up with him.

    July 15, 2012 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  25. Patrick from Minnesota

    There are a lot of things worth appologizing for. Telling the truth is not one of them.

    July 15, 2012 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
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