By Geneva Sands - 05/21/12 01:42 PM EDT
The Obama campaign released a new video Monday attacking Mitt Romney's former company Bain Capital for killing jobs at an Indiana office supply company.
The six-minute video features former employees from the plant criticizing Bain, the private-equity firm founded by Romney, for costing the company jobs and for lowering wages to make profits for Bain.
The Romney camp fired back, slamming the president's economic policies as "failed" and accusing the Obama campaign of "attacking free enterprise."
"This morning, the Obama campaign is out with a new web video. President Obama continues his assault on the free enterprise system with attacks that one of his supporters, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, called 'nauseating' and a former adviser, Steven Rattner, called 'unfair,' " said Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul in a statement.
This is the second ad in two weeks from Obama that has centered on Bain. The president's team hopes to portray Romney as out of touch with the middle class by focusing on Bain.
Romney has talked of creating 100,000 jobs at Bain, which he argues purchased and then helped reinvent a number of companies, including Staples.
Romney last week called the attacks on Bain "really off target" and "misguided."
"I think the president is just misguided in his effort to try and divide Americans from one and another, to try to disparage one part of our economy from another or one person from another, that's really not what America is. If there are bad actors, why, that needs to be pointed out, but that's certainly not the case for the whole industry," said Romney during an interview with the conservative blog Hot Air.
A Bain Capital spokesman also pushed back against the Obama campaign's attacks on the firm's business record.
“Throughout Bain Capital’s 28-year history, we have been focused on growing businesses and improving their operations," said a spokesman in a statement, claiming that Bain "grew the overall business" during the four years they controlled Ampad.
"The Marion plant was a challenging situation in a business that was performing well overall, growing revenues and adding jobs. Our control of Ampad ended in 1996, fully four years before it encountered financial difficulties due to overwhelming pressure from ‘big box”’ retailers, declines in paper demand, and intense foreign price pressures," the statement continued.
"Despite political attacks that emphasize the few companies that have struggled, the facts are that during Bain Capital’s ownership, revenues grew in 80 percent of the more than 350 companies in which we have invested,” the spokesman added.
This story was updated at 3:04 p.m. to include a response from Bain Capital.