Super PAC uses Olympic 'opening ceremony' to hit Romney in ad
July 25th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
11 years ago

Super PAC uses Olympic 'opening ceremony' to hit Romney in ad

(CNN) - The super PAC backing President Barack Obama uses the Olympic "parade of nations" to mock Mitt Romney's reported overseas investment accounts in a television ad released Wednesday.

The minute-long ad from Priorities USA is set to air in Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia during broadcasts of the London Olympics, the group said. The games begin Friday.

An official with the group said the ad was part of a larger $20 million television and Internet push "to educate voters about Mitt Romney's business record and policies that hurt middle class families."

The spot features an announcer detailing Romney's accounts as video rolls of past Olympic opening ceremonies.

"Welcome to the Olympics!" the announcer says. "There’s Mitt Romney, who ran the Salt Lake City Games, waving to China – home to a billion people. Thousands owe their jobs to Mitt Romney’s companies."

Romney, who will attend the London opening ceremony as part of a three-nation foreign tour, was the president and CEO of the Salt Lake City Winter Games in 2002.

His campaign frequently cites his experience there by saying he turned around a failing operation into one of the most successful games in history.

The spot latches onto a now-familiar attack line from Obama's team, which has hit its rival for reportedly shipping jobs overseas during his time as chief executive of Bain Capital.

Romney's team counters that he left Bain before the firm invested in companies that outsourced jobs, though some records indicate he was still listed as the firm's CEO.

The Romney campaign has also pointed to a nonpartisan fact-check from FactCheck.Org, which poked holes in the "outsourcer" claims, and recently launched a new offensive accusing the president of outsourcing jobs through his administration's trade policies and loan guarantee program.

The Priorities ad ticks off a host of foreign countries as footage rolls of delegates entering an Olympic stadium.

"India, which also gained jobs thanks to Romney, an outsourcing pioneer. And Burma, where Romney had the uniforms made for the 2002 games," the announcer says, before moving on to countries that are regarded as offshore tax havens.

"We know the Swiss have a special place in Mitt Romney's wallet – er – heart," the announcer says. "He kept millions in Swiss banks – those Swiss sure know how to keep a secret. Speaking of secrets, there's Bermuda. Home to a secretive corporation set up by Romney. No one knows why. And Romney won’t tell. And the Cayman Islands. Where Romney keeps millions to avoid U.S. taxes."

The ad concludes: "You gotta say this about Mitt Romney. He sure knows how to go for the gold - for himself."

Democrats have also used this line of attack on Romney in the past, claiming the presumptive GOP nominee isn't being transparent enough in only disclosing two years of personal income tax information. Romney has released his income tax return from 2010, and has vowed to release his 2011 return when his accountant completes it. He did release an estimate of his 2011 taxes.

Romney's campaign says that level of disclosure is beyond what is legally required of presidential candidates, and is plenty of information for voters to decide between Romney and Obama.

Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Mitt Romney • Priorities USA
soundoff (167 Responses)
  1. Keeping it Real

    I find it rather pathetic to use campaign propaganda during the Olympics. My feelings apply to both candidates.

    July 25, 2012 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  2. Time for a real change!

    Obama has invested in numerous companies who have OFF-SHORED jobs overseas. GE for example has outsourced over half of it's labor force, all thanks to Obama! And Obama has the nerve to call out Romney for the little influence he had on outsourcing jobs to other Americans in our own country? Obama has no creditability!

    July 25, 2012 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  3. BeverlyNC

    Romney claimed he should be President for 2 reasons – Bain and the Salt Lake Olympics. However Rommey refuses to release any records to prove he was an honest leader of either. He lied about his time at Bain – he did not leave until 2002 according to the SEC and the Salt Lake Olympics were racked with corruption and Romney had all the financial records of that Olympics SHREDDED so he could not be held accountable for the misuse of funds, no bid contracts for his buddies, and letting Bain profit from his role there. Romney is dishonest, no character, no principles and unfit for any position of leadership. He is an embarrassment for the Republican Party and even they hate him. He is fallling farther and farther behind Obama in the polls and especially in the swing states. Goodbye GOP and good riddance of obstructionist betrayers of the People.

    July 25, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  4. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    FORWARD??? Did you finally fall into your ABYSS of ignorance?
    I'd ask you how dumb do you feel right now, but I don't really care.
    Oh, and here's the clarifying quote AGAIN in case you're also suffering from a severe case of you-got-busted denial:

    Robert E. Diamond Jr., former chief executive of the scandal-tainted Barclays Bank, helped organize a Romney fund-raiser

    By the way I don't tap-dance but I do a mean salsa!

    July 25, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  5. Debby Does Dumb Comments

    Hey Debby, didnt you read the article? Obama did not create the ad. I suppose that your focus is on your hate for Obama rather than the points made in the video. Why do you think Romney deserves to hide money in other countries to avoid a tax liability while we slave away to earn food, shelter and a modest life for our families. I am sure you arent rich so why support someone who takes advantage of you or I?

    July 25, 2012 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  6. BeverlyNC

    So what does Romney stand FOR? He is so desperate he is taking statements President Obama made and editing them into the opposite of the President said and making false lying TV ads of it. President Obama NEVER said business owners did not build their businesses. Romney cut short what President Obama said and did not include the full statement or even the context of what the President was saying. I dont vote for liars who stand for NOTHING, hide their wealth in foreign countries to avoid paying taxes, hide their tax returns, had their financial records when running the Olympics SHREDDED and all his emails as Governor permanently DESTROYED. Only a corrupt man with no character, no principles, no honor, no leadership and no credible solutions for anything does such things. I stand with the President as he continues to act like a leader, prove his credentials, his values, his work is for the PEOPLE, and that he can handle issues both foreign and domestic with great skill and thought.

    July 25, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  7. Fisher

    I think they have proven a multitude of times this Romney outsourcing propoganda from the Obamanation team is a pack of lies. As all things Obama if they repeat the lie enough times they think it will be true. Obama has outsourced more jobs overseas through his green energy goat deals than Romney ever has done. Obama will not get a 2nd term for all the damage he has done to our country.

    July 25, 2012 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  8. Lizzy10

    I'm so tired of negative campaigning.

    July 25, 2012 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  9. Jewels

    FORWARD into the Obama FISCAL ABYSS
    And then there is GE, the CEO sits on Obama's Jobs Council I believe, you know, the one he doesn't meet with because he's too busy golfing and vacationing. And then there is GM, which the US taxpayers own a large part of. And then HP, IBM, and probably just about every major US company.

    Maybe Obama should impose a $10,000 a year tax penalty for every overseas job these companies have? That will bring in a lot of money and jobs right? Until the company decides to move entirely overseas and then the government gets nothing, zip, nada. Obama and the Democrats refuse to acknowledge the obvious, what you tax the most, you get the least of. The more you tax wealth and productivity, the less you will get. The USA government cannot hold them hostage within our borders.

    Forward: Where do you suggest the govt. start? I know he is close with a GE exec. You are clearly anti-Obama. My point is more that the jobs are going overseas, companies are getting tax incentives and many will continue with the cheapest approach. Yet, there are companies that can show integrity by focusing on what's best for a nation - and their children's futures. I know that's easier said as an outsider but, what is the consequence if the company moves overseas? If their jobs are already outsourced, and they're that passionate about saving it at the expense of a nations best-interest - then they should move overseas. Enough with working the system to look out for yourself so much that it negatively affects everyone else. And, that is what's been going on..

    July 25, 2012 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  10. IrvineCAVoter

    Go for the Jugular Obama. Obama2012

    July 25, 2012 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  11. sbssue1

    Just how small can you get? If anything it should create negativity for the Obama camp. I certainly hope it backfires on the DEMS as it should. Take everything away from all our fine folks we sent to win and represent our country. The olympics are supposed to show pride and pull competitors together; honor and ........

    I hope they rethink this most horrible action and cheer our teams on and quit with the politics for one moment. Don't stoop to the bottom of the barrel.

    July 25, 2012 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  12. sbssue1

    I hope this makes Obama proud!

    July 25, 2012 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  13. Larry L

    @Fair is Fai

    "A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship."
    Or... We could have a Supreme Court allow a very few billionaires to buy the candidates they feel will give them the greatest return on their investment. The media flood manipulates the undereducated and fearful masses with false advertising and lies – A.K.A Fox News. We would then transition to a government following the classical elitist theory, with a dash of corporate fascism. Sound familiar? Romney is bought and paid for by the Koch brothers. Think they expect a profit on their investment?

    July 25, 2012 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  14. Ed1

    Time for a real change don't forget GM who was bailed out by us China is their number one customer and they have plants and people there not made in the USA.

    July 25, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  15. Ed1


    Mitt did write of money for their horse the amount was $50.00 not the $77,000 that some stupid people are saying.

    It's not hard to find go to truth or fiction and you will see.

    July 25, 2012 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  16. kafantaris2

    "Take care of your pennies and your dollars will take care of themselves."
    Or, "take care of the country and your reelection will take care of itself."
    The wisdom of this was missed by the President's handlers who also misjudged the savvy of the independent voters. Why else would they have bombarded them with dumbed down TV ads? 
    Somebody should have told them that these folks are sitting on the fence for a reason, and it is not a lack of foresight. 
    Indeed, it takes more foresight to figure out things yourself  than to merely follow one herd or another. And deciding the things you care about does take time. 
    Yet, independent voters also need help. Though they do not blame the President for all of the country's problems, or expect him to fix them overnight, they do expect him to stay on the task day by day.
    Yes, honest effort is what they want, but they are not seeing it lately.  Perhaps this is because the President's handlers are too worried about losing their jobs to let him do his.  But he is the President and he should get them all out of his way to focus on running our country.
    Besides, keeping his nose on the grindstone might be the best way to convince the independents that he should get more time to finish out the job.

    July 25, 2012 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  17. Patrick from Minnesota

    Hey, so called "time for real change," brace for a shocker, Obama never personally invested in GE or any other company... now Mitt Romney on the other hand...

    July 25, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
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