By Amie Parnes - 07/13/12 10:01 PM EDT
HAMPTON, Va. — President Obama argued Friday that Mitt Romney "is going to have to answer" questions about his time at the private equity firm Bain Capital.
Following news reports that allege Romney was still with the company when it oversaw bankruptcies and the outsourcing of jobs, Obama said Romney has a lot to explain about his business career.
"My understanding is that Mr. Romney attested to the SEC, multiple times, that he was the chairman, CEO and president of Bain Capital and I think most Americans figure if you are the chairman, CEO, and president of a company, that you are responsible for what that company does," Obama said in an interview with the Washington television station WJLA.
"Ultimately Mr. Romney, I think, is going to have to answer those questions ... because if he aspires to being president, one of the things you learn is, you are ultimately responsible for the conduct of your operations, but again that's probably a question that he's going to have to answer and I think that's a legitimate part of the campaign," Obama added.
Asked if Romney should answer questions about his role at the company promptly, Obama replied, "Yeah absolutely."
The remarks for Obama were released just minutes before Romney was set to appear on all the major TV networks to discuss his time at Bain Capital.
In his second campaign speech of the day in Hampton, Va., part of a two day, five-stop tour, Obama continued to hammer Romney for outsourcing.
"Now, Gov. Romney, his main claim to fame, the reason he said he can fix the economy is because of his business record," Obama told a crowd of 1,300 supporters gathered in a high school gymnasium. "And it turns out that his business record was starting a company that's been investing in what were called pioneers of outsourcing."