Bain Far From Fading, Obama Keeps After Romney
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) â Mitt Romney insists that he stepped down from his private equity firm years earlier than federal records indicate, but President Barack Obama is more than a little skeptical and says his Republican rival has much to explain.
Obama campaign advisers said the president, during a second straight day in tightly contested Virginia, planned to remind voters on Saturday of the discrepancies between Securities and Exchange Commission filings and Romney's recollection of his role at Boston-based Bain Capital.
Obama was focusing on a state that he won in 2008, a first for a Democratic nominee since 1964, and on an issue that Romney says diverts attention from struggling economy.
A new ad from Obama's campaign repeated the charges that the firm shipped American jobs to China and Mexico; that Romney has personal wealth in investments in Switzerland, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands; and that as Massachusetts governor, he sent state jobs to India.
"Mitt Romney's not the solution. He's the problem," the ads says as Romney is heard singing "America the Beautiful."
At stake is Romney's chief contention that as a former businessman, he has the experience to create jobs and spur a struggling economy. The Obama campaign has countered that Romney ran a firm that pioneered the practice of sending American jobs out of the country and that his background is one of an investor.
The ad was set to run in closely fought Colorado, Florida, Iowa, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, and debuts as Democrats and some Republicans call for Romney to release tax returns going back several years. Romney has said he won't go beyond releasing his 2010 tax records and, before the November election, his 2011 taxes.
"You can never satisfy the opposition research team of the Obama organization," Romney told CBS on Friday.
In a round of interviews, the Republican candidate defended his account of his role at Bain, and said Obama owed him an apology for an aide's suggestion that the Security and Exchange Commission filings, if false, could bring a felony charge.
"This is simply beneath the dignity of the presidency of the United States," Romney told ABC.
Backhanding the request, the Obama campaign responded with a Web video that shows Romney criticizing Obama in speeches and interviews. Romney accuses the president of not understanding freedom and following an appeasement strategy in foreign affairs, and says he intends to "stuff it down his throat and point out that it is capitalism and freedom that makes this country strong."