New York Times: New Video Attacks Romney
Original article by Jim Rutenberg at The New York Times
Priorities USA Action, the pro-Obama super PAC, is marking the start of the yearlong countdown to Election Day 2012 by releasing a video entirely devoted to attacking former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, painting him as a cold-hearted businessman disconnected from the pain of ordinary Americans.
The video is clearly intended to rile up the deflated Democratic base of liberal voters and activists, waving the equivalent of a red cape before their eyes: the Republican strategist Karl Rove, the Fox News Channel and Tea Party protesters all make appearances. But it specifically rips Mr. Romney, including video from his statement that “corporations are people,’’ that the government should not “try and stop the foreclosure process – let it hit the bottom’’ and that it should “let Detroit go bankrupt.”
Priorities USA Action was co-founded by the former White House deputy press secretary Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney, the former aide to the former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. It was formed with the explicit purpose of helping President Obama with unlimited donations from corporations, unions and wealthy individuals. As such, it is prohibited from coordinating with his campaign, which cannot accept such donations.
With many big liberal donors reluctant to give in any big way at this point, the pro-Obama group is facing an uphill climb against its extraordinarily well-financed Republican rival, American Crossroads, which was founded with help from Mr. Rove and the former Republican National Committee chair Ed Gillespie. But the video shows that Priorities USA Action sees an opening to at least get liberals angry enough to engage in what is expected to be a close election next fall.
The ad is to be accompanied with a new Web site, Facebook push and $100,000 in Internet advertisements aimed at giving the group a major presence online, said Mr. Burton.
Andrea Saul, a spokeswoman for Mr. Romney, called the ad a “false and negative attack.”
“More middle class Americans have lost their jobs under President Obama than any president in modern history,” she said in a statement. “While Mitt Romney is focused on his jobs and economic plan, which will provide relief for the middle-income taxpayers, President Obama and his cronies are worried about their own jobs.”
Mr. Romney’s tax plan eliminates taxes on interest, dividends and capital gains for people with annual salaries of $200,000 and less.
Mr. Romney’s aides have aggressively sought to counter the notion that he would only favor the rich, noting that a regular part of his stump speech is the line, “What I want to do immediately is help the people who’ve been hurt most by the Obama economy, and that’s the middle class.”