Axelrod says Booker's argument 'just wrong'

Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod rebuked Cory Booker on Monday for his comments criticizing Obama's anti-Bain Capital rhetoric as "nauseating."

"In this particular instance, he was just wrong," Axelrod said of Newark's mayor, who in his Sunday comments also criticized ads on the GOP side. 

"There were specific instances here that speak to an economic theory that isn't the right theory for the country," Axelrod said in defending his campaign's ads attacking Romney's record at Bain Capital, the private-equity firm founded by the presumptive GOP presidential nominee. 

Axelrod said Romney's business record at Bain is a legitimate campaign topic because the GOP presidential hopeful is leaning on his experience as his chief credential in running for the White House instead of his years as Massachusetts governor. 

It "behooves us to ask, 'What did you do?' and some of the cases are disturbing and deserve to be looked at," Axelrod said. 

Axelrod said that Romney's business practices reflect his potential economic theories, adding "we're going to continue to prosecute that case."

Booker, appearing Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press," said he wouldn't indict private equity and that Bain's record, in its totality, shows the firm has "done a lot to support businesses, to grow businesses." 

"This kind of stuff is nauseating to me on both sides," Booker said. "It's nauseating to the American public. Enough is enough," he said.

Booker walked back his comments on Sunday night, emphasizing he was criticizing the rhetoric on both sides. 

The Obama campaign released a new video on Monday attacking Romney for the bankruptcy in 2000 of a paper-manufacturing company, Ampad, that had been purchased by Bain. The campaign released ads last week that focused on the bankruptcy of a Kansas City steel plant that Bain Capital had acquired.