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BLITZER'S BLOG: Dems ramp up Romney attacks
October 31st, 2011
03:03 PM ET

BLITZER'S BLOG: Dems ramp up Romney attacks

By CNN's Wolf Blitzer

(CNN) – Among the Republican presidential hopefuls, Mitt Romney is the candidate the Democrats fear most. That’s been clear to me for weeks.

Obama campaign staffers and Democratic Party activists have been going after the former Massachusetts governor on a whole host of issues, but especially on his so-called “flip-flops.”

The Democrats suspect that Romney would stand the best chance of attracting independent voters and could wind up beating the president in several swing states. That’s why, I suspect, they are trying to soften him up now as much as possible.

In their talking points, e-mails and tweets, they really are going after Romney much more than any of the other Republican candidates. In fact, they rarely even talk about the other GOP candidates.

Here’s how White House adviser David Plouffe, the 2008 Obama campaign architect, summed up Romney on Sunday on NBC’s "Meet the Press":

“One, he has no core. And you know, every day almost, it seems to be we find another issue. You know, he was supportive of doing things like cap-and-trade agreement. Now, he doesn’t think that, you know, climate change is real.

“He was to the left of Ted Kennedy on gay rights issues. Now, he wants to amend the Constitution to prevent gay marriage.

“He was an extremely pro-choice governor. Now, he believes that life begins at conception, and would ban Roe v. Wade.”

Plouffe said that Obama, in contrast, has “conviction” and “a true compass” and is someone “willing to make tough calls.”

“And you get the sense with Mitt Romney that, you know, if he thought it was good to say the sky was green and the grass was blue, to win an election, he’d say it,” Plouffe said.

Romney certainly does not have the nomination guaranteed. He has much work to do.

But we are beginning to get an advance preview of a possible Obama-Romney presidential battle.

The Romney folks, for months, have certainly not been shy about slamming the president. And the Obama folks, it is obvious, are ready and eager to play ball.

RELATED: Romney remains the top target of GOP rivals, White House

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Filed under: 2012 election • Mitt Romney • White House • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Wilame

    Oops. Looks like we're in a threadjack. Can sedboomy bring us back to the original question why Obama apparently does so well among Mormons (at least those represented on the bloggernacle)?The dean of my college and my children all support Obama. That's quite a spectrum. From the very educated to the young and merely enthusiastic. And it's representative of the rest of the U.S. Something very important is happening, and with Romney out of the picture, it's happening in Mormondom just as it's happening elsewhere. I think Danithew's original observations are quite interesting.

    August 3, 2012 at 3:55 am |
  2. Wendi

    Gee, I wonder why the left is so afraid of Romney. Could it be his mad debating skills (WITHOUT a teleprompter), or his clean history and beautiful family (no need to think of a cover-up!), or maybe it's his successful business career? Maybe they're afraid of his ability to surround himself with competent people, or the fact that he graduated from Harvard with both a law and business degree SIMULTANEOUSLY! HMMMMMMM.......I can't imagine why anyone on the left would fear that.

    November 1, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  3. Sue

    Romney WILL win the nomination, and Romney WILL win the White House.

    Based on all state/national polls---Romney either beats or ties with Obama.

    The majority of Independents have said that they plan on supporting/voting for Romney over Obama.

    The unemployment rate and economy will not be better by the elections in 2012.

    Romney will win the election in November 2012--and Obama will be sent back to Chicago!!

    President Romney definitely has a nice ring to it.

    November 1, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
    • *SIGH*

      Romney has a legitimate chance to defeat Obama. However the Republican base will bury Romney and cost him the nomination.

      November 9, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  4. diversities

    Flips to turn this economy around is a good sign. Get rid of bockages to good politics.
    Romney has good vision of changes in the WH policies and regulations so businesses can boom.

    November 1, 2011 at 9:49 am |
  5. Andrew

    Romney 21012. Obama and the LIB do nothings are on the war path again.

    November 1, 2011 at 9:47 am |
  6. Dr. Ken

    I think that both have a fight ahead of them. Obama has done a great job on foreign matters and that has been his strength, unfortunately domestically and politically (in DC), Obama has failed to shine. That said, the fault lies in many places, but still he is President and it is his job to overcome that. Obama is weak at the moment. Romney is a strong candidate and should be more outspoken about his changes, or flip flops. Some are seen as as evolved changes which is healthy in a leader. He was also Governor of a socially liberal state, and thus his policies (maybe not personal beliefs) should reflect that of the people he represents – this is a democracy after all where the people's decision and wants are reflected within the leader. One can have personal strong convictions and still be able to be a politician which means at times to have to be flexible according to those you represent. That is their job, to represent the people! Obama should step up attacks but more importantly promote his own agenda and successes. He has my vote, but something does need to change -maybe he needs to flip flop on some of his policies that are failing!

    November 1, 2011 at 8:57 am |
  7. Andrew

    Obama has taken more money from Wall Street Bankers than any other candidate or President in the history of this country. Sad fact. I cannot, I will not vote for the man again. Romney 2012!

    November 1, 2011 at 2:17 am |
  8. Peter

    To evolve in one's thinking is the sign of a strong and honest character. That is not what Romney does. Romney adjusts his position according to what will get him what he wants. This means that Romney is not concerned about anyone but himself. And a person like that in the presidency is the last thing you want, because the presidency is about leading a nation for what is best for its people.

    October 31, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
    • JonahFields

      First and foremost, Mitt Romney is a salesman. At 19 years old, every Mormon male member is compelled to go on a church mission to promote (sell) Mormonism. Get it! Mitt's pitch to the American people is just another hard sell, “Beyond the American Ethic of Religious Tolerance”.

      November 1, 2011 at 9:36 am |
  9. Amelia

    "Mitt Romney is the candidate the Democrats fear most." This tells me that Republicans should be voting for Romney. If even the Obama administration has recognized that Romney is the one most likely to beat him in 2012, then Republicans should be jumping on board and supporting him.

    October 31, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
    • Rope a Dope

      Doesn't matter. OB will win relection regardless of your false hopes and dreams. Romney just isn't what the country need right now or forever, for that matter. A little rich boy that haven't a clue how the world evolves without a silver spoon in its mouth. We know what the last little rih boy left us with....

      October 31, 2011 at 11:42 pm |
  10. Phil in KC

    I hate to say it, but I do think Romney or Huntman are the Repubicans' best shot at beating Obama. So I think what the Dems are doing makes sense – except for one thing. What if the Republicans nominate one of their right-wing weirdos – then actually get the doofus elected? That would be very bad.

    October 31, 2011 at 7:09 pm |
  11. John Marco

    The reason Democrats are so scare of Romney is because he is the candidate who could not only get the independent vote, but the conservative Democratic vote as well. The Democrat Party would not have a solid argument against him.
    If they would say he "flip-flops" this could be a strenght to him in a General Election because it could also means to the conservative democratics that Romney could be someone more willing to sit down and discuss the issues. Then, they would have to discuss Obama's record, which it would be disastrous!

    October 31, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
  12. magnus

    Attack all your want... Romney will be our next President.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
  13. QS

    "I see the ability for a person to assess positions, and adjust his own, as a good quality."

    I can understand this perspective, however it's disingenuous. This may work on one, maybe two issues that you can adjust your stance on. But when you have flipped on virtually every issue along the way, it is no longer "assessing positions and adjusting your own", it's pandering and telling people what they want to hear just to get elected.

    Unfortunately, every time I think about saying something like "Romney will win the nomination but lose the general", I'm reminded of the complete idiocy of this country to elect Bush not once, but twice!

    October 31, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  14. Seth

    Mittens hasn't ever held a position he hasn't flip-flopped on. As a democrat, I HOPE the President gets to run against this wishy-washy no-conviction RINO. It's the true conservatives like Cain who believe what they're saying that I worry about.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  15. George

    Let's get his church elder out in the open so we can see who will be running the White House.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  16. George W.

    ....It's about time the Dem's took off the gloves. Sitting there listening to the half truths and lies being leveled against the president, the bs from the GOP needs to be confronted. There are too many gullible uniformed voters out there.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  17. Monkey the cat

    The criticisms of Romney are justified. He has been on both sides of every major issue since 1994. However, saying that Obama has “conviction” and “a true compass” and is someone who is “willing to make tough calls” is patently ridiculous. He is an unprincipled coward, easily bullied by the Republicans in Congress.

    What a horrible choice, if it comes to this!

    October 31, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  18. NoTags

    The Democrats need to concentrate on Congress as much as the presidency. Make a concerted effort to sweep out every member of Congress who signed Grover Norquist's pledge.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  19. Anthony

    After this blog it is clear to me that Mitt Romney is set to be the choice of the GOP presidential ticket for 2012. As for his "flip-flops" makes me as an informed voter wondering what he really stands on. After the administration of George W. Bush it shown what kind of leader he was as well. He had stood by certain issues like ending the afghanistan war yet was failed to be delivered when we invaded iraq in 2003. All candidates for the presidency must be judged on their issues nothing more beyond something for an example like religion.

    October 31, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
  20. Ames IA

    The last time Romney ignored my home state of Iowa he was the same man. When he was in south Florida he wears a guayabera shirt, when he is in a San Fransisco fund raiser he wears a pink tie. He is a there a real Mitt Romney under there somewhere?

    October 31, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  21. Griff

    "They gambled without knowing the steeds workouts first! "

    October 31, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  22. SKS

    Remember in 2004 when George W. Bush attacked John Kerry as a "flip-flopper" and the American voters bought that argument!! American voters need to be more educated than just listening to the campaign ads to decide who to vote for. I still think the Democrats Presidential candidates (either Obama or Cllinton) care better for the Americans than the Republican Presidential candidates.

    October 31, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  23. Tom

    Romney will get the country back on the path to growth. Yeah, Obama has conviction alright – in class warfare. They way his minions tout his leadership, he is General Geroge Patton incarnate. What a joke!

    October 31, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  24. KeepFearAlive

    well, it's nice to be first ..... so first, lets' just assume that the shifless shape shifter with his chicanery and shananigans, will say almost anything to anybody,.... he might as well put Cain on his ticket.. at least Cain will contrdict his entire argument withing the same paragraph....

    October 31, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  25. mod

    I see the ability for a person to assess positions, and adjust his own, as a good quality. I would hate to see someone say, 'I will never change my viewpoint, regardless of what data or rationale is shown to me.' – we can't afford to have a complete stickler in office. I hope that Obama or Romney, whoever wins, keeps some degree of flexibility and willingness to learn (change)

    October 31, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Michael

      I would agree up to a point. But if someone provides no believable, logical, rational explanations for the changes to their positions, and all of the changes are coincidentally in tune with the politically fashionable winds in their party, is that the kind of "flexibility" you want?

      October 31, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Peter

      Yes, well, there's a difference between evolving one's thinking and flip-flopping with the changing political winds. Romney does the latter.

      October 31, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
  26. Stephanie Palmer

    Talk about self-serving. In Romney's tax plan, he's included permanently ending the federal estate tax. Now the only thing that it does for the country is to reduce the amount of taxes the government takes in at the owner's death. What it does for the extremely wealthy (especially him) is to keep 100% of the money he is now holding. It's does nothing for the 99%ers. No wonder he's running for president. He can benefit himself and the heck with the rest of us. What a charlatan!

    October 31, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
    • Cobra

      The 99%ers are mostly bums and if you gave the money to them with in a short time they would not have it and the 1%ers would be back in charge. I breaks down the the fact you have to have some ambition and very few of the 99%ers just want hand outs without working for anything.

      October 31, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
  27. The Source


    I am not a die-hard Romney this point I am still undecided unfortunately. One thing I find interesting is that candidates like Romney and Obama are slammed for a change in their stance on something.

    While I get it why you don't want a candidate who says ONLY what people want to hear. (seems that is a trend anyway in politics). BUT I actually think that it is a positive thing that a candidate might progress on a particular subject....for the right reasons. Perhaps the candidate has shifted his view based on new research in the world....or based on the candidate's party feeling very strongly about it.

    Why would someone want a candidate that will make up their mind once, and always stick to it no matter what? If society continues to they want the candidate to just keep banging their head against the wall?

    Obama has "flip-flopped" and so has Romney. Kudos if their progressive changes have been for the right reasons...and not just to give people what they would like to hear.

    October 31, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • rand

      It's much more fun for the media to slam the new comer for flip flopping......and to ignore the one in the White House who has flip flopped for years. After all he's protected from media scrutiny because he is our least he thinks so. He's here to protect us from ourselves............

      October 31, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
    • Peter

      Er... wrong. Obama has not flip flopped. He's compromised. There's a big difference. And while I agree that to evolve in one's thinking is a sign of a good, honest character, flip flopping with the political winds is not. Romney does the latter.

      October 31, 2011 at 7:57 pm |
  28. Griff

    "So they should be running scared of Romney, just as much as any major banker in the world today. Dizzie Liz in England is running scared of the Euro for the same reason. But things are happening for major changes in both camps."

    October 31, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  29. glyder

    cnn and others to follow,especially if he wins the nomination.obama goes unchallenged by msm.wash,rinse repeat.

    October 31, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • KeepFearAlive

      There's really not nuch to challenge Obama on.. what you see is what you get... transparency the others will be camolflaughing themselves like camillions... lizards in the the grass ... It's amazing that in a country of over 350 MILLION people, the GOP field is so Absolutely Laughable.. and the best part is that they Know it ... especially, David Frum ....the conservative op-ed contributor.. who pretty much sums up the GOP field as a buch of clowns with a proper circus .... hehehehehehe

      October 31, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  30. Barry

    Jeez, what do you mean his "so called flip flops?" Are you that concerned about tiptoeing around the gorilla in the room? Romney has flipped on every major social position dear to the Republicans. He IS Flip Romney.

    October 31, 2011 at 3:49 pm |

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