By Jonathan Easley - 07/13/12 04:27 PM EDT
“The Obama campaign has issued these reckless and wild accusations that Mitt Romney is a criminal and a felon. That just simply doesn’t pass the laugh test," she continued, "and frankly it just shows us signs of a desperate and unraveling campaign for them to continue along these lines when there have been independent fact-checkers from all over the country who are saying they are running a dishonest attack.”
President Obama's team has been pressuring Romney over a report Thursday in the Boston Globe that questioned when Romney severed ties with Bain Capital. Although both Romney and Bain have said that he left in 1999 to head the Salt Lake City Olympics, and no evidence has yet emerged to show that the Republican hopeful was involved in the day-to-day management of the firm, filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission show that Romney maintained the title of president and CEO.
Obama’s deputy campaign manager, Stephanie Cutter, said Thursday that this revelation meant that Romney was lying either in public statements or to federal regulators.
“Either Mitt Romney, through his own words and his own signature, was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony, or he was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the American people to avoid responsibility for some of the consequences of his investments,” said Cutter. “And if that's the case, if he was lying to the American people, that's a real character and trust issue that the American people need to take seriously.”
Romney's campaign manager said Thursday that the president should apologize, but the Obama campaign stood by the remark, saying the Romney campaign “either misled the American people about when he left Bain or misled the SEC.”
On Friday, Gitcho said the signed documents were a technicality due to the complexity of unwinding such a complicated endeavor.
“There are technical and legal reasons why his name would remain on those documents,” she continued. “But the fact is and it’s been confirmed by the fact-checkers, Bain Capital, and the people at the Olympics that he was gone from the company to the Olympics in 1999 and had no involvement in the day-to-day decision-making at the company at that time.”
Romney’s team was out in force on Friday, crying foul over the attacks. Romney surrogate John H. Sununu said President Obama must be “dumb” for his campaign to insinuate that Romney might have committed a felony.
“This is a dishonest campaign that has a pattern of being dishonest,” Gitcho continued. “So this attack from yesterday has frankly just jumped the shark and it shows that the Obama campaign, they are scared to death of having to run on their own record because they haven’t been able to create jobs and they have no plans in the future to be able to fix the economy, and that’s what the American people care about.”