Romney attacks Obama over welfare in third campaign commercial
August 20th, 2012
06:55 AM ET
10 years ago

Romney attacks Obama over welfare in third campaign commercial

(CNN) - For the third week in a row, Mitt Romney's up with a new television commercial that claims President Barack Obama is altering the federal welfare-to-work program by dropping work requirements in the law.

"Since 1996 welfare recipients were required to work. This bipartisan reform successfully reduced welfare rolls. On July 12th, President Obama quietly ended the work requirement, gutting welfare reform," says the narrator in the ad, which was announced Monday morning.

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"One of the most respected newspapers in America called it 'nuts,' saying 'If you want to get more people to work, you don't loosen the requirements – you tighten them. Mitt Romney's plan for a stronger middle class will put work back in welfare," adds the narrator.

The newspaper touted in the spot is the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the primary daily newspaper for Virginia's capital city. Richmond is a major media market in the crucial battleground state.

An independent and non-partisan fact-checking organization, PolitiFact, rated one of the Romney campaign's earlier ad's claim on welfare as "Pants on Fire." And the Obama campaign, the White House and former President Bill Clinton, who signed the original legislation into law, all attacked the earlier spots, saying the claims were false and misleading.

The Obama campaign responded Monday to the new commercial.

"Mitt Romney continues to run ads that independent news organizations, former President Clinton, and the Republican co-author of welfare reform have said are not true. The Obama administration has strengthened the welfare to work requirement, not weakened it. Just one week after pledging to run a substantive campaign, and whining about the negativity in this race, it's clear Mitt Romney has absolutely no intention of living up to that pledge," said Obama campaign spokeswoman Lis Smith.

Friday the Obama campaign countered the Romney campaign commercial with a spot of their own, with the narrator in the ad saying "See this? Mitt Romney claiming the president would end welfare's work requirements? The New York Times calls it 'blatantly false'. The Washington Post says: 'the Obama administration is not removing the bill's work requirements at all.’"

Regardless of the pushback, it's apparent that the Romney campaign is continuing to attack the president over welfare, with both Romney and House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, his running mate, highlighting the welfare claims in their campaign speeches last week.

As is their practice, the Romney campaign would not reveal any details on where the new commercial will run or on the ad buy.

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Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Didn't these changes reflect what Romney and other governors asked for after this program started?

    August 20, 2012 07:05 am at 7:05 am |
  2. obama is Out Of Touch with reality

    what is it that people dont see, if you do everything for the people, you control the people and thats what obama wants, control of the people. If We The People dont kick obama out then you can guarantee that America will not see another president of a free world, but you will have the Dems and obama declaring themselves kings of America and your freedoms will be gone and you will become a slave to obama.

    August 20, 2012 07:08 am at 7:08 am |
  3. Debra From Georgia

    This has been a proven LIE. Mr. Romney you need to follow your own advise and stop running these kind of ads.

    August 20, 2012 07:14 am at 7:14 am |
  4. n

    Again and yet again, I give you Romney America. At face value, a proven lier and cheat, over and over again. He constantly ignore the facts and cling to factual lies. I know you hate our president, but do you hate him enough to vote against your gut feeling about this Romney guy who could care less about you and america? Remember this guy Romney bets against you and america. He's betting against you as I type.

    August 20, 2012 07:22 am at 7:22 am |
  5. Marcia Greenwood, IN

    Why doesn't Romney stop telling proven lies about Obama and usiing Nazi propoganda tactics-repeat the big lie over and over until it is believed-and tell us about his taxes and his vision for the country

    August 20, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  6. Really?

    Nuts. If you want to turn the country into a government controlled communist nation you get more people dependent on the government first, then you swoop in for the kill.

    August 20, 2012 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  7. mark

    Romney is such a lying sack know what.
    Is he not aware that in 2012 we have the interwebz?

    August 20, 2012 07:51 am at 7:51 am |
  8. Dilip Samuels


    would any America( not counting the AKIN like tea party politicians) EVER believe ROMNEY on Medicare, Welfare ...they are not dumb !!!!

    The Insurance COMPANIES MUST LOVE ROMNEYHOOD......they are trying to deliver Americans to them

    TEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL us WILL mEDICARE COVER SICK OLD Americans with cancer, cardiac or any MAJOR problem.........................NO WAY HOSE !!!! with the PITIFUL VOUCHER

    August 20, 2012 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  9. Wake up People!

    I just have one question. Why is this man not called out by the media over his constant lies?? Isn't this the third ad about the same lie?? Where are President Obama's attack ads? All I see are Willards constant lies.

    OBAMA 2012!

    August 20, 2012 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  10. Marty, FL

    "Pants on fire" Romney was already caught lying by Politifact over his hypocritical welfare claim, yet Mitt sadly chooses to triple-down on his immoral lies. Not presidential material.

    August 20, 2012 08:08 am at 8:08 am |
  11. chill

    Romney the liar. What more can you say. To get a waiver, a state must show that it's new approach to welfare will REDUCE THE WELFARE ROLLS BY AT LEAST 20%. The Republicans used to approve of that. It also pushes down the decision on how to run the welfare program to the states, RATHER THAN A COOKIE CUTTER APPROACH IMPOSED BY FEDERAL BUREAUCRATS. Republicans used to like that too. Their Obama-derangement syndrome is leading them to be against anything Obama is for regardless of whether it is a Republican idea. Maybe he should endorse Romney, eh?

    August 20, 2012 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  12. Stephen in VA

    "This bipartisan reform successfully reduced welfare rolls." – No, it didn't. Look at Welfare program expenditures year over year since 1996. Look at the studies which have been done. The 1996 welfare reform was a flop. I like how Common Sense (2012 Version) presents a more detailed analysis of it.

    August 20, 2012 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  13. kathy/Minnesota

    Ok, we all know this is not"TRUE" and to continue to lie about this is sad, the true message is the ryan/romney team are saying, "those lazy poor people, will never be worth sh**" but then they yell from the highest stoop, 1 in 6 people live in poverty, but then forget to mention(via) the ryan/romney budget there will be triple that amount in poverty.

    August 20, 2012 08:16 am at 8:16 am |
  14. Alan

    It is fantastic to see these last days of the Obama regime. The Liberals have been shown to be intellectually bankrupt and morally wanting. Hopefully we can get on to some responsible governance with Romney-Ryan after we sweep aside Obama and his cronies in November.

    August 20, 2012 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  15. CT voter

    More Romney lies being swallowed by the ignorant. This country is in serious trouble.

    August 20, 2012 08:35 am at 8:35 am |
  16. Jeff in Virginia

    These lies are a losing argument.... Makes you wonder why Romney is making it.

    August 20, 2012 08:36 am at 8:36 am |