Romney blasts Priorities' attack ad; spot still hasn't had paid runs
August 9th, 2012
02:52 PM ET
10 years ago

Romney blasts Priorities' attack ad; spot still hasn't had paid runs

(CNN) – Mitt Romney hammered President Barack Obama and his allies Thursday for running a campaign he said was "focused almost exclusively on personal attacks," though the harshest attack against the presumptive GOP nominee – an ad linking him to the loss of insurance and eventual death of a steel worker's wife – has yet to run as a paid TV advertisement.

"I am seeing some of the ads out there," Romney said on the Bill Bennett Morning Show on Thursday. "I don't know whatever happened to a campaign of 'hope and change.' I thought he was a new kind of politician. Instead his campaign and the people working with him have focused almost exclusively on personal attacks."

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Romney tore into the Priorities USA Action ad, released Tuesday, that ties him to the death of a former GST Steel worker's wife after the employee lost his job when the plant closed down. Romney's former private equity firm, Bain Capital, acquired GST Steel in 1993, but the company went bankrupt in 2001, two years after Romney ceased day-to-day oversight of Bain.

The ad was deemed "inaccurate" by a CNN fact check, which pointed out the wife of the steel worker died in 2006, five years after the plant shut down.

"You know, in the past, when people pointed out that something was inaccurate, why, campaigns pulled the ad," Romney said on the Bill Bennett radio show. "They were embarrassed. Today, they just blast ahead. You know, the various fact checkers look at some of these charges in the Obama ads and they say that they're wrong and inaccurate, and yet he just keeps on running them."

One of Romney's campaign ads released this week, which blasts Obama for changes to welfare, was also deemed "inaccurate" by several independent fact checks, including a rating of "pants of fire" from Politifact. Romney did not mention those fact checks on Thursday.

Bill Burton, the co-founder of Priorities USA Action, said Wednesday he "absolutely" stood by the spot.

"The point of this ad is to tell the story of one guy, Joe Soptic, and the impact on his life that happened for years, and to this day, as a result of decisions that Mitt Romney made," Burton said on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer." "This is one of a series of ads in which we talk about the very long lasting impacts that Mitt Romney's decision had on these communities, on these individuals and their families."

The uproar created by the Priorities USA commercial has led to numerous airings on cable news, but the spot has yet to run as a paid commercial on television.

The group Tuesday said the ad, titled "Understands," was part of their current $20 million television and online buy, and that the 60-second spot would run in the battleground states of Iowa, Florida, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Ohio.

Burton wouldn't say on CNN Wednesday how much of that $20 million would be spent airing "Understands."

"Well, you know, it depends," Burton said. "Every ad is a little bit different. Sometimes you think that you want to keep an ad on longer, and so you do."

CNN's Brianna Keilar and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Ads • Mitt Romney • Priorities USA
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Hey Mittens, "You Lie!" Release your taxes, show us you foreign investments, explain how you managed to get $100 million in your IRA when the legal limit is $5000 a year. That comes out to two hundred years, and you don't look a day over 70.

    August 9, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  2. Boo

    Personal attacks? Romney is just another whining conservative who refuses to tell us ANY specifics about his plans if elected president. WHAT IS THIS GUY HIDING?

    August 9, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  3. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Plutocrats who whine and lie on the next Oprah. Mittens is a wimp, now wonder he had to have a gang in high school to protect him.

    August 9, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  4. Laverne

    I don't believe this guy! Mitt Romney has ran one of the most negative campaigns in years, he is a liar, distort president obama's words, support his surrogates hateful deceitful adds and now want to whine about a superpac obama has nothing to do with. He was the first one to holler I don't control superpacs, and that is fine as long as they are attacking president obama, but when the shoe is on the other foot it is a double standard like the lies he is pushing about welfare reform. I know it is going to backfire on him as it always does. I hope other mormons are not as trifling, dishonest and cunning as this man cause if they are, I don't want anything to do with them. Mitt Romney is convinced he deserves to win because he his filthy rich and can afford to win, I hope the American people don't allow this parasite to buy this election!!

    August 9, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. Critical Thinking

    Burton, you are a tool ! And Mr. President you are immoral !

    August 9, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Act like a man Mittens. You trashed your republican primary opponents with lies, yet yet don't like being trashed by the truth.

    August 9, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. Jesus Christ Superstar

    I still can't get over that horrible DNC ad that's going to air prior to the 2020 election. Just horrible!

    August 9, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  8. Togo

    Romney lies about as often as he breathes. I'm sure CNN is going to cover that at some point. Maybe mention the Romneygate comment that this ad inspired that is causing right-wing seizures all over the Internet.

    One of Romney's biggest problems is that Obama was Swift Boated the first time around. It's hard to get the feigned outrage up to critical levels the second time.

    August 9, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  9. David in Houston

    Pot, meet kettle...

    Poor, poor GOP...always the victim.

    August 9, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  10. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Romney says "What ever happened to the campaign of hope and change:?? ....HAPPY TO ENLIGHTEN YOU MR.ROMNEY!!!!!!........ IT GOT A CALL TO CAUTION WHEN IT FIRST HEARD.... "The single and most important thing we want to achieve is for President. Obama to be a one term president" To para phrase Omar Khyyam.....Sadly, things said or written follow us and will never disappear!!!

    August 9, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. kayla

    you started it mr. twitt. if you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen. and this is just the beginning.

    August 9, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  12. SafeJourney

    How in the hell is this wimp mitt going to stand up other nations leaders if all he is going to do i whine, whine, whine. My God, dont let mitt the twit anywhere near the White House

    August 9, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  13. Marie MD

    Hey twit, still waiting on what your plans and solutions and ideas are. Waiting, sating, waiting . . . . .
    You are the bone playing dirty and lying. Yournproblem is thatbyou have been for and against so much that you no longer know which way is up.
    I though the AK bimbo waa the most disgudting lying mutant on Earth but I can see why mcnasty didn't think you were worthy of even a vp nomination. You are truly a sick old man!

    August 9, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  14. BLKMANinAmerica

    LMBAO...............oh poor babie Romney I guess he's like all the other repuks out here can dish-it out (the LIES) but truly can't take it. What a babie.

    August 9, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  15. v_mag

    Romney is George W Bush with a tax problem.

    I don't hear anybody (other than guys in Idaho bunkers cleaning their AK47s and wearing camouflage) talking about what a great president W was, and yet people blogging on CNN defend Rob-money all day. THEY'RE THE SAME GUY! You like one, you have to like the other. There is not a dime's difference between them.

    Why don't the Rich-publicans invite W to speak at their convention? Or, even go to their convention? How can they so easily remember and quote Clinton and forget George W?

    August 9, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  16. BLKMANinAmerica

    This man is sooooooooooooooooooooooo full of him-self................WHAT the heck is wrong with repuks?

    August 9, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  17. jkhorn

    As a Democrat, I cannot participate or affilliate with an ad such as PrioritiesUSA. I know Mitt Romney would be bad for me personally. But it would be even worse if I lose my integrity. I hope this ad is pulled and changed. It can easily be changed to show why the Affordable Health Care Act is important and even using Romney's own spokesperson to support this. I understand Joe's anger about losing his job and insurance. But Joe needs to blame the real cause for his wonderful wifes' death. Cancer!

    August 9, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  18. Marty, FL

    The hypocrisy of Mitt "Pants on Fire" Romney is unbelievable. He did not pull lying ads after his own dishonesty was revealed. In fact, Romney double down on his lies.

    August 9, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  19. Etch-A-Sketch Mitt RobMe Out-sourcing-Jobs Outsourcing-his-Money and Outsourcing America

    Robme Hoodloney...this same idiot is not pulling his dishonest welfare ad after it has been deemed "PANTS ON FIRE" by POLITIFACTS as being inaccurate, yet he wants his opponent to pull theirs!

    Whinner-in-chief needs to release his tax returns and get outta the kitchen if you can't stand the heat Robme Hood!!!

    August 9, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  20. vic , nashville ,tn

    Hey Mitt stop whining and crying , give live interview to CNN, abc, CBS, NBC and MSNBC with out any conditions

    August 9, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  21. rosaadriana

    Does it count as a personal attack if it is true and relevant to your qualifications to be President or is it just a personal attack if you dont like it. Ive seem much worse done to Democrats (and to Republican primary opponents) under the guise of relevancy, Im glad the Dems are getting a backbone.

    August 9, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  22. Sniffit

    Om nom nom nom Payback Flakes stay crunchy in conservative tears.....

    August 9, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  23. mgc tampa

    Whats sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander Romney.

    August 9, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  24. tykl

    Obama and everybody he surrounds himself with are all shysters. The underlying premise or assumption of this ad is that if Mitt Romney did not buy (and then his company sell) Mr. S's company, then Mr. S would still be employed and insured right now. We know that is not true. There was a reason the company was bought out. Mr. S. can likely thank Mitt for having a job and insurance longer than he would have if the company just went through bankruptcy earlier before Bain tried to save it. And for those of you who have been as uneducated as Obama, no, the argument that Bain just stripped companies of assets is ludicrous and shows how out of touch with business you all are ("you didn't build that") – why would anybody kill the goose that lays the golden egg? They don't. There is tons more value in keeping it alive and productive. So anyway, the premise of the ad is a joke and then the details are ignored by the smoke and mirrors Obama/Chicago crew. And although Obama can't coordinate with the PAC, he could go up to his lectern and lecture the PAC about civility as he has felt compelled to do to the American people in the past.

    August 9, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  25. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    "I don't know whatever happened to a campaign of 'hope and change.' I thought he was a new kind of politician.
    I just busted a gut laughing!
    You don't know what happened to our President? You happened to our President. The GOP happened to our President.
    The Tea Party happened to our President. Disrespect of the highest magnitude in public and private forums happened to our President. Hate happened to our President. Racism happened to our President. Your lying happened to our President. Your greed happened to our President. The Koch brothers/Birch Society in full force happened to our President. Obstruction like we've never before experience in this country during near-Depression times happened to our President.
    I could go on and on and on................
    The expression "two can play that game" comes to mind even though he hasn't gone anywhere near your oxygen-depriving slimy depths.
    Make no mistake the President's got more fight in him than you; he's fighting for MILLIONS of us that you'd just as soon toss aside in order to opent he path to greater riches, tax-cut, loopholes, and benefits for your uber-wealthy Nascar owning buds.

    KMA Mittens. You and your fake disingenousness. Get used to the butt whipping. The gloves are off and WE'VE got our President's back. Who do you have covering yours?

    Obama 2012. Period. End of sentence.

    August 9, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
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