White House insists attack on GOP budget wasn’t a campaign speech

The White House on Wednesday strongly denied that President Obama’s attack on the GOP budget was a campaign speech. 

“This was a policy speech, that again had a great detail of detail attached to it,” said White House press secretary Jay Carney. 

Obama blasted the Republican budget from Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Tuesday at a press luncheon, calling it a “radical vision” for the country.

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Obama specifically criticized Romney, his likely opponent this fall, for praising the Ryan budget as “marvelous.” It was the first time Obama had mentioned Romney by name in a speech.  

Many took Obama’s acknowledgement of Romney as a sign that the president has shifted into campaign mode, but Carney said that’s not the case.

"You can be sure that he won't choose as a venue to give a campaign speech — especially his first campaign speech or official campaign speech — to an audience of editors, reporters and publishers who are professionally obligated to sit on their hands," Carney said.


He noted that the president also criticized Ryan’s 2012 budget when it was released last year, and said the arguments Obama laid out on Tuesday have been a consistent part of his policy platform.

"The president gave a comprehensive, detailed, dare I say wonky exposition of his views of what our budget priorities ought to be and his views on why the Republican budget, put forward by Chairman [Paul] Ryan, is not the right solution to our problems,” Carney said.

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