President Obama's reelection campaign launced an attack on Mitt Romney's record as a job creator yesterday, comparing Romney's role at Bain Capital to an undead monster. "It was like a vampire. They came in and sucked the life out of us," union steelworker Jack Cobb tells the camera.
The two-minute ad (airing in Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Colorado and Virginia) blames Romney for the 2001 closing of GST Steel in Kansas City, Missouri. More than 750 workers lost their job after Bain tried to turn the company around.
But the ad hadn't been released more than a couple hours before Obama's story started falling apart. First, Obama's hand-picked car czar, Steve Rattner, said on MSNBC, "I think the ad is unfair... I don’t think there’s anything Bain Capital did that they need to be embarrassed about."
Then the Romney campaign followed up with an official response echoing Rattner's message: "We welcome the Obama campaign’s attempt to pivot back to jobs and a discussion of their failed record. Mitt Romney helped create more jobs in his private sector experience and more jobs as Governor of Massachusetts than President Obama has for the entire nation."
The Romney campaign later followed up with a detailed accounting of Romney private sector job creation record, their own video featuring steel workers from a different company thanking Romney for creating their jobs, and a "GST Steel" tumblr filled with links to stories fact-checking Obama's attack.
Seperately, conservative media outlets also pushed back against Obama, reporting that while Romney left Bain in 1999, Obama bundler Jonathan Levine was still at the firm when the steel company actually went bankrupt in 2001. And that The Washingotn Post had already given an earlier and similar Obama attack "Three Pinocchios."
Team Romney may have appeared blindsided when Newt Gingrich attacked Romney's Bain record, but they were ready for Obama to do the same. For every bad investment Romney made at Bain, they seem ready to tell their own success story. Is Obama prepared to do the same thing for his economic record?
Poll: A new CBS News/New York Times poll shows Romney beating Obama 46 percent to 43 percent among registered voters.
Obama: The same day he attacked Romney for running a private equity firm, Obama hosted a $35,800-a-head fundraiser at the home of the president of the nation’s largest private equity firm.
Romney: A well-known, openly gay supporter of Mitt Romney in New York has decided to withdraw his support for Romney and back Obama instead.
Paul: Ron Paul announced he "will no longer spend resources campaigning in primaries in states that have not yet voted."
Wisconsin: Top Wisconsin Democrats are furious with the national party — and the Democratic National Committee in particular — for refusing their request for a major investment in the battle to recall Scott Walker, according to The Washington Post.
Around the Bigs
The Wall Street Journal, Contagion Fears Hit Markets: Investors battered European stocks, dumped the bonds of Spain and Italy, and bid the euro down against the dollar Monday after the collapse of weekend coalition talks in Greece edged that country closer to an exit from the euro zone.
The Washington Post, Taxmageddon sparks rising anxiety: Across the U.S. economy, anxiety is rising about the potential for widespread disruptions after the November election, when a lame-duck Congress will have barely two months to resolve a grinding standoff over taxes and spending.
The New York Times, Obama’s Switch on Same-Sex Marriage Stirs Skepticism: Most Americans suspect that President Obama was motivated by politics, not policy, when he declared his support for same-sex marriage, according to a New York Times poll released Monday.
Bloomberg, NLRB Rule Speeding Union Elections Thrown Out by Judge: A rule change by the National Labor Relations Board that allows for faster votes on union elections was thrown out by a federal judge who said the agency lacked a quorum when it approved the measure.
AEI's James Pethokoukis details how tax-hike austerity is failing in California, just like it did in Europe.
The Washington Examiner's Mark Tapscott and Jennifer Peebles detail how Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., helped secure $31 million in earmarks.
Cato's Michael Cannon notes that Medicare and Medicaid lose at least 35 times as much per year to fraud and other improper payments as JP Morgan did this quarter.
Talking Points Memo explains why President Bush is to blame for all of Obama's deficits.
The American Prospect's Jamelle Bouie explains why Obama's attack on Bain are the "most important" attacks Obama will make this election.
Salon's Steve Kornacki notes that Democrats' record attacking Romney on Bain are mixed at best.