Back on the attack: Romney hits Obama for spending cuts
March 1st, 2013
02:47 PM ET
9 years ago

Back on the attack: Romney hits Obama for spending cuts

(CNN) - Is it 2013–or 2012 again?

Former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney blasted President Barack Obama over the forced, across-the-board spending cuts–known in Washington as the sequester–scheduled to kick in Friday.

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"Well, no one can think that's been a success for the president. He didn't think the sequester would happen. It is happening," Romney said in part of an interview that aired Friday on Fox News. "But to date, what we've seen is the president out campaigning to the American people, doing rallies around the country, flying around the country, and berating Republicans. And blaming and pointing. Now what does that do? That causes the Republicans to retrench and then put up a wall and fight back. It's a very natural human emotion."

Romney has almost entirely stayed out of the spotlight since he lost the presidential race in November. The comments mark the first time the former Massachusetts governor has publicly criticized the president since the election. Romney met privately with Obama at the White House in late November, but few details about their conversation were released.

The Fox News interview, which will air in full on Sunday, came the same day Obama again charged Congressional Republicans with failing to compromise and work with Democrats to craft a deficit-reduction deal.

Republicans, in turn, say they already compromised on the issue when Congress passed a fiscal cliff bill two months ago that included an increase in tax rates. House Speaker John Boehner reiterated Friday the real focus should be on spending reductions, not more tax reform.

In preparation for the budget slashing, the Immigration Customs and Enforcement decided to release hundreds of "low-risk, non-criminal detainees" this week in order to keep detention levels within the agency's overall budget. The White House said the decision was made without its knowledge or input.

Asked about the decision, Romney said: "I think the president has to act in the interest of the country."

"And that means if we need an aircraft carrier in the Gulf - and I believe we do, I thought we needed one more - he should do it," he continued. "I think if there are people who are incarcerated, he should make sure that we're able to keep them in jail."

Romney further chalked up the move to a political ploy.

"Look, it's politics. It's, 'OK, How do we do something that will get a headline that will make it look like those terrible Republicans aren't willing to come together?"

Read more: Campaign was a 'roller coaster,' Romney says

Filed under: Debt • Deficit • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (139 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Nobody cares what you think, Mittens....Go back to CA and play in your car elevator!!!

    March 1, 2013 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |

    obama is such a bratty child... he is anything but a leader. i agree that mitt would have been a better prez.

    March 1, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  3. catmomtx

    just sayin.....The country voted for the person they felt would do their best for ALL of the American people and he was able to articulate his goals and how he would do it. We believed him because we saw with our own eyes how hard he was working to help our country move forward and we saw how hard Republicans includingg Romney and Ryan were working to keep him from doing his job. Romney on the other hand could only tell us vote for me, I'm not Barack Obama while lying about the President. The American people were smart enough to not buy into the bs Republicans were peddeling. Heck, Romney and Ryan couldn't even win their own states, so how good were they? The country refused to vote for Romney because he offered the average American NOTHING!!!

    March 1, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  4. shelmus

    are we really listening to this loser????? while the cuts are happening wheter either party wants them or not....the presidents approval ratings are up, the congressional approval ratings are down...and all of the top republican contenders for 2016 if there is such a thing through romney under the bus for both his poor performance in the election and for his i ask again, what are we doing listening to romney????

    March 1, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  5. jon

    I thought we all wanted cuts to reduce the deficit??? Well here they are folks. Would you rather have the Republicans cut our social security and medicare benefits?

    March 1, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. Ann

    Obama got his tax increase – where are the spending cuts? He says he cut – where? Did he cut from what we spent last year or just decrease the amount of increase?? A decrease to an increase is not a cut! Why can't this supposedly smart lawyer figure out how to save money? If it was his personal money, he'd figure out a way but he just loves spending our money and demanding more.

    March 1, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |

    HAHA its so funny seeing the crying liberals say that mitt lost by a "landslide" when he only lost by a few small percentage points. obama's welfare vote is what got him reelected.

    March 1, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  8. Yanni

    How on earth Mitt think his advice and judgment is important? The GOP is sad group of people out of touch out of time they always bring back the discredited and washed up people to save them. There will not be fresh idea in the Republican party because they are nostalgic for the 1950s and somewhere around that era.

    March 1, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  9. Sue

    I threw up a little when I saw his face again. Geez Romney what do you think the Republicans have been doing too? Take Boehner, always making excuses. You lost, now go away.

    March 1, 2013 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  10. MDink

    Dear Mitt,

    as of November 7th, 2012 you forever became irrelevant. Try keeping it that way. Thank you, and have a great weekend.

    March 1, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. Peg

    If the NRA were a Terrorist Group, Obama would arm, fund and embrace them.

    March 1, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  12. lolrepublicans

    Mitt who?

    March 1, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  13. Darren

    Like it or not Romney is right. He is definitely more of an adult than Obama. Does any rational person really believe that Obama's tactic of 'blame everything on the other guy' is good for the country. It's sad that the American people chose to elect the lesser candidate.

    March 1, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  14. ThinkAgain

    Mittens is turning into Grumpy McCain, adding nothing to the national discourse except a huge helping of sour grapes.

    Get over it, Bub. You may get a planet when you die, but you will NEVER be President!

    March 1, 2013 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  15. ColoradoJoe

    well the republicans got what they wanted... CUTS ... be careful what you ask for... you may get it, but not they way you wanted it. Got to love how the GOP blames the president for something congress as a whole agreed upon.

    March 1, 2013 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  16. catmomtx

    Ray E. (Georgia)

    There's no doubt Romney would have been the better President.

    And there is no doubt that you and all of the Republicans who have been disrespecting the President and his wife, demeaning them vilifying them and refusing to work with them would have expected total and complete cooperation with what ever Romney wanted to do. You all would have completely condemned the treatment that you all have put the President, First Lady and our country through for the past five years. You all would have expected Romney, his wife and family to be treated with the utmost respect and with kid gloves. It's a shame Republicans felt the need to try and destroy our duly elected President and First Lady from day one, disrespecting the office of the Presidency and the customs of our country. We know this would never have happened if you people had gotten your way. I have no doubt that President Obama was the right choice if for no other choice than to shed lift on the good ole boy network and how their claws come out when they lose power.

    March 1, 2013 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  17. Independent and Disgusted

    Obama is a horrible president and Democrats are stinking hypocrites. The sequester is Obama’s. It was his idea; he got the Democrats to pass it, he signed it. Just like the Bush tax cuts belonged to Bush. This clown threatens Woodward and others – he is a disgrace. The Dems attacked Romney because he earned money and his trust invested in the Cayman Islands. Then Obama nominates Lew who took $1mm bonus paid with tax payer bailouts and invested in the Cayman Islands. Stinking hypocrites.

    March 1, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  18. Danny

    Good thing that Obama is not allowed to run for president another term or there would be another sore loser like mitt
    the spit and Mccain the insane pain.

    March 1, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  19. Dakster

    Romney realizes he LOST right? Just checking.

    March 1, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  20. joe

    Who cares about this charlatan, Romney, trying to speak on spending cuts. He and his private equity folks got all the bail out in the world but do not see any need for a break for ordinary folk. He should get lost!!!

    March 1, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  21. Mark

    UGH!!! He's going to be another Sara Palin, NEVER GOING TO GO AWAY!!!

    March 1, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  22. jim

    These cut's were drawn up by both parties, so quit the blame game and get to work. They all could careless about this, because it's not affecting their paychecks.

    March 1, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. vidal808

    This is a bunch of BS- Romney should keep his trap shutt at this time and lay low. He lost and is still sore. Too bad. The Republicans are at fault 150% for the mess we are in right now. I ope Obama stays his ground and refuses to negotiate with the party of NO.... Let them go where the sun is not shining , I hope thy get all voted out of office next election.

    March 1, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  24. pbtad

    Romney who?

    March 1, 2013 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  25. Jinx9to88

    Ah Yes Mittens!!! Mittens is a sore loser like McCain was when he lost in 2008.

    March 1, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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