Martin Bashir | April 27, 2012
>>> mitt romney is just staying the stage outside of columbus, ohio. this come hours after his party turns student loans and an affordable college education into a cynical house vote on himming health care and on a day the president spoke to troops in georgia addressing what he called the 9/11 generation.
>> those of you who want to pursue a higher education and earn new skills, you deserve that opportunity as well. because higher education is the clearest path to the middle class .
>> it is the president's popularity with younger voters that still vexes republicans to this day. even an old hand like karl rove . his super pac's new ad, hitting the president for being a celebrity, is getting considerable blow-back. not because it is evil or mean but because it's so bad. take a look.
>> oh, yeah!
>> joining us now, richard ? wolffe.
>> the blowback is such that donald trump in february of mitt romney was a delight. he called it one of the worst he's ever seen. what was your response?
>> donald trump does know a thing about celebrity and he is overstepping the mark and i think it is quite clear frg you're going after someone, then why go after that popularity? if i understand that karl rove might be envious and feeling inadequate when he looks at the president but it didn't work for the campaign in 2008 when they tried to do this. all they're saying is that he is popular. people like him outside of politics? is that a bad thing?
>> trump is calling it among the worst he's ever seen. he make the point that the president brings out the worst in republicans. this ad just seems to make them seem petty, jealous, and that frankly, they don't have a candidate of their own that is similarly attractive.
>> underscoring this is the general attitude that they think he is an amateur, incompetent and cannot do the job. so he is an imposter for them. that may be their trueit shows the conte mpt they hold the president is. it is not really a substantive attack on a presidential record. he is president of the united states . and he won it quite clearly, unlike maybe karl rove 's boss did in 2000 . he has every right to be there. why not go after him for his record. it misses the mark. it betrays their ? level of contempt and it underskoshs how this president is popular all around.
>> there are ads in midwest swing states and hitting the president. take a listen.
>> $2.3 billion went overseas while millions of americans can't find a job. $1.2 billion to a solar company that's building a plant in mexico. half a billion to an electric car company that created hundreds of jobs in finland .
>> finland ? of all the indignities in life. to lose to finland ?
>> everyone loves the finns. i think it is great that conservatives feel that subsidies for corporation that's do business overboard are a bad thing. and so it would be great if they also closed the loophole. maybe even tried to stop protecting those businesses who want to now bring the profits back tax free that they got from overseas. there is obviously a lot of hypocrisy here. i think curious they think anything foreign is bad when it involves a corporation getting help from the obama administration when republicans are helping international companies overseas. that's okay. that's helping free enterprise .
>> of course, we're watching mitt romney speaking in ohio right now. the president on this day of clashes has a new ad. it uses a mitt romney quote to all but come out and say, osama bin laden would still be alive if romney was president. here's the quote. it is not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person. i mean, ? to your point earlier, if they cannot attack him on policy and on could not ten, they have to attack on celebrity. that feels very weak to me.
>> i'm sure mitt romney if he was in the situation room in those circumstances, i would like to think that he would have ordered the mission to go ahead. but the problem for mitt romney is that he has said everything about every subject on all sides. and he has a record out there. and yes, this was from his last run for president. this time is no different. this was a candidate, a likely nominee who said that libya was a mistake and now he's silent on it. his advisers think we should be helping the rebels in syria. there's no consistency on his foreign policy . the only consistent thing is that he hates everything that the president stabs for. and on some cases, he should just say, you know what? it's not such a bad thing what this president has done on foreign policy .
>> good luck on that. jonathan capehart joins us now. do you think the republicans are going to attack the president for using air force one and his time campaigning even though he went out to visit those strong tremendous men and women who have served this country?
>> certainly. they're going to use any and everything as a criticism against the president. a little dicey when you start bringing the troops in in all this. and especially when the president is there talking to troops and talking about defending them ? against folks from these for profit colleges who are preying on troops. preying on veterans. and one of the instances he talked about in his speech, preying on troop who have come back who have severe brain injuries and don't even remember the courses they signed up for. so the public can attack the president for his use of air force one, pooh pooh getting osama bin laden but it is a very dicey situation when you start criticizing the president for saying something and doing things with the troops.
>> again, to richard's point earlier. they seem to want to attack his celebrity. and yet when it comes to a constructive proposal, have we heard mitt romney come out with one in relation to the troops? for example, what the president has signed today to protect their interests? to protect their finances? particularly individuals who may have suffered traumatic brain injury . where is the positive constructive policy that mitt romney is offering?
>> if there was one, we would be about it. that's part of the problem with romney rox. and especially with the republicans in general through this whole primary process. it has been about what the president has done wrong. what the president has, quote, failed at. and not a whole lot about where they want to take the country. where does mitt romney want to take the economy vis-a-vis relations. the administration is already doing with regard to say north korea or what was going on in libya. and until mitt romney and republicans on capitol hill in general can start, until they start ? talking about a positive agenda under a republican administration, both here at the white house or their in capitol hill . until they can start talking about that. the american people won't have a lot to go on and the president is talking about real things . real accomplishments. there are some failures there but at least he has the record to run on.
>> just remember, that mitt romney does have a swiss bank account . he does that offshore funds on the grand cayman islands . those are his two forays in foreign term.