After getting caught flatfooted by attacks on outsourcing at Bain Capital, the Romney campaign is aggressively pushing back against reports questioning the candidate’s ties to the firm while he was running the Olympics.
The Romney campaign will demand a retraction from the Boston Globe Thursday for a report on numerous SEC filings from 1999 to 2001 that listed Romney as “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president.” Romney has said he was CEO in name only, delegating all day-to-day operations to 26 managing directors at the firm from February 1999 on.
The Romney campaign previously — and unsuccessfully — demanded a similar retraction from the Washington Post after it published a story on Bain’s investments in companies that outsourced jobs.
Romney officials are also accusing the Obama campaign of overreaching with incendiary claims in trying to make their case that Romney should be held accountable for Bain’s investments. On Thursday, Romney’s campaign manager Matt Rhoades demanded an apology from the president for campaign aide Stephanie Cutter’s remark that Romney’s actions may be criminal. Cutter told reporters Thursday morning that Romney “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.”
“Pres. Obama ought to apologize for the out-of-control behavior of his staff, which demeans the office he holds,” Rhoades said in a statement. “Campaigns are supposed to be hard fought, but statements like those made by Stephanie Cutter belittle the process and the candidate on whose behalf she works.”
The Romney camp got a boost in its efforts by Fortune, which reported on Thursday that Bain documents provided to potential investors in a new fund in 2000 did not list Romney as active in day-to-day operations. The Obama campaign says Romney should be held accountable for Bain’s actions during that period regardless of his level of involvement, given that he was listed in official documents as CEO and owner.
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.