Mitchell Reports | April 30, 2012
>> re-election team is indeed it outing it, not holding back when it comes to driving home the point that president obama ordered that raid on osama bin laden . here's a new video they just put up today.
>> he persevered here at home and as commander in chief.
>> tonight, i can report to the american people and to the world that the united states has conducted an operation that killed osama bin laden , the leader of al qaeda .
>> go, go, go.
>> and a terrorist who is responsible for the murder of thousands of innocent men, women and children .
>> the romney campaign is calling it shameful exploitation.
>> this is one of the reasons president obama has become one of the most divisive presidents in american history . he took something that was a unifying event for all americans and managed to turn it into a divisive partisan political attac attack.
>> stephanie cutter is the deputy campaign manager for the president's re-election team and joins me from chicago. you've got the video up today. the anniversary is tomorrow. you've been, they say, exploiting it. john mccain just hammered away. he put out a statement saying on president obama that will shame on barack obama for diminishing the memory of september 11th and the killing of osama bin laden by turning it into a cheap political attack ad . no one disputes that the president deserves credit for ordering the raid but to politicize it this way is the height of hypocrisy. your response?
>> uh-huh. well, i think most americans would disagree. it was an incredibly momentous night almost a year ago, a year ago tomorrow when the president reported to the country that we got bin laden , that he had been killed. after a decade after searching for him, we got it done. the president got it done. with the help of our incredible military, our incredible intelligence officers , everybody came togethedone. so it absolutely will be talked about through the course of this year because it's this president who made the tough decision, which you know, even chris cillizza said it could have turned out badly and been a real political hit if it didn't turn out well. he paid the tough decision because he thought it was -- he was willing to take that 50-50 shot and we ultimately got him. i think most americans would agree it was a significant moment in this country and a significant accomplishment of this president. i also think it's worthwhile to make sure that as we're heading into this general election just a little over six months to go, the american people know where mitt romney did stand on it. it's not exploitation, it's fact. mitt romney said it. he said he won't have gone into pakistan to pursue bin laden with actionable intelligence if the pakistanis wouldn't get him. he also said he wouldn't move heaven and earth to get bin laden . well the president did move heaven and earth . it wasn't just one order. he moved heaven and earth to get him and that's a distinct difference.
>> stephanie, one of the things that mitt romney said when asked about this on a rope line in new hampshire, he said even jimmy carter would have gone after bin laden and ordered the hit that night. that's sort of a double hit against president obama and also a reflection against jimmy carter .
>> your response to that?
>> that's an incredibly gracious thing for him to say. he should just say, this president deserves congratulations for making that order and i hope i would do the same thing just as president clinton said, it's the gracious thing to say at a moment like this. unfortunately, mitt romney didn't take that opportunity.
>> the other criticism we're hearing from republicans i want to give you a chance to rebut is the eric fern strom and others at "the washington post " forum on president slow jamming the news. let's watch.
>> the governor likes to have a laugh just like anybody else. i do think there was something a little bit off key about the president slow jamming and appearing to make light of the fact that of students are struggling. late night is a place where you can reach people who usually aren't tuned into the political process. we'll probably do it again but you won't see the governor slow jam .
>> so we're not going to see mitt romney slow jamming the news with jimmy fallon .
>> well, that would be an interesting thing to see. you know, i think you know, i could only hear bits and pieces of what eric was saying. i do know a couple things he did say at "the washington post " conference this weekend. he said that mitt romney was glad that barack obama followed his advice on the auto bailout by you know, pushing the autos into bankruptcy and restructuring. you know that's not true. every american knows that's not true. mitt romney said we should let detroit go bankrupt and not give them a lifeline, that ultimately ended up saving the companies. and you know, reigniting the most competitive auto industry in the world. thankful saves a million jobs and has created hundreds of thousands more new jobs. he also saided that mitt romney wasn't going to put out any new policy details on his economic plans. i think that's going to be a big problem for them in this general election . i think the american people want to know exactly what he plans to do for this country. is he going to do for america what he did for massachusetts? if so they should have an understanding what that means, more debt, fewer jobs, manufacturing jobs leaving the state. government jobs created, taxes being raised. all of those things. so you know, we hope that mitt romney will put more details out what he plans to do for this economy, how he plans on paying for those $5 trillion worth of tax cuts . or is he going to go back to the same policies that were pursued over the previous decade under the previous administration that drove this country into debt, turned surpluses into deficits and ultimately, destroyed the middle class . so you know, a couple of interesting things to note about his performance at "the washington post " this weekend.
>> we're going to have to leave it there. thank you very much, stephanie cutter . and