NewsNation | May 29, 2012
>>> in for tamron hall . mitt romney 's vegas style campbell with donald trump . romney headed to vegas where in a few hours he's going to be dining with the donald for a campaign fund rafund-raiser. ramps up his birtherism rhetoric, the latest remarks on cnbc.
>> a lot o questioning his birth certificate , they're questioning the authenticity of his birth certificate . i've been known as being a very smart guy for a long time i don't consider myself birther or not birther but there are major questions.
>> when asked about his association with donald trump , romney refused to condemn those specific remarks.
>> i don't agree with all of the people who support me. my guess is they don't agree with everything i believe in. i need 50.1% or more and i'm appreciative to have the help of a lot of good people.
>> the obama campaign released this web ad , two republican nominees, how john mccain corrected his supporters' offensive remarks about the president in 2008 to romney 's response now.
>> why doesn't he show his birth certificate ? he doesn't have a birth certificate . he may have one, but there's something on that birth certificate , maybe religion, maybe says he's a muslim. i did a great job in getting him to, first of all i haven't seen it i'll look at it later -- i don't need to look at your copy. i loved running. i had a great time. i was doing fantastically in the polls i became friendly with mitt romney .
>> all of this comes as mitt romney prepares to clinch his party's nomination tonight. let's bring in today's "news nation" political panel, peter alexander , national syndicated radio talk show most, michael smerconi smerconish. we understand romney 's campaign has released a statement to you, just moments ago, now being more specific about donald trump and the language that he's using from this morning.
>> reporter: a lot of people asking questions about what mitt romney said on the campaign plane latst night was sufficient and saying what donald trump said he disagreed. here what happens we are hearing specifically from the campaign in the last hour. governor romney has said repeatedly that he believes president obama was born in the united states , the democrats can talk about donald trump all they want. mitt romney is going to talk about jobs. and how he can get our economy moving again. those are the words from andrea saul, spokeswoman for the campaign. the goal, that's been on message recently, focus on jobs, trying to hit the president on the creating a hostile environment creators but as they began the holiday week they were distracted by this from donald trump . as you know, there's a multimillion dollar private fund-raiser with the donald . the timing couldn't be worse for the campaign as they try to make their mess annual one thing and stuck talking about birther movement, claims donald trump is talking about.
>> earlier today donald trump tweeting about all of this. and had this to say. barack obama practically begging mitt romney to disavow the place of the birth movement. he's afraid of it and for good reason. he keeps using senator mccain as an example, however, mccain lost the election. don't let it happen again. steve , as we look at this, and as you're looking at this unfolding before tonight's big campaign cash grab in las vegas , is this the best advice for mitt romney to follow, what donald trump is offering and the visual he's about to present, mitt romney on the same stage, the same arena, as donald trump ?
>> reporter: well, i think unfortunately what we're seeing is why some of us try very hard in the last primary to avoid and obama matchup. we have a president who can't run right now on his record so he's got to run on how to paint mitt romney as outside of the mainstream as a conservative, which he's really not. and then you've got mitt romney , who actually won't run on his record, either. he's got to be the first major candidate for president who was a governor of a state who doesn't run on his own record as governor and that's because his record as governor was liberal and he doesn't want to remind his base on that. he's got to run on obama . and even when donald trump is pimping romney he has to do it by going after obama . we have twoen candidates for the next two months who can't run on their own records and i think that means we're going to see a lot of red her igs like this.
>> steve , you were a newt gingrich supporter. newt gingrich is to appear with mitt romney , donald trump . does that change your opinions about mitt romney moving forward, the fact that newt gingrich is throwing his support behind him and showing up on the campaign trail with him?
>> no, i'm 38 years old, and i think a lot of folks that grew up in younger again rashgeneration, we'r e not just proxies. when they speak for us, we don't check our minds. newt gingrich isn't on the ballot, mitt romney is. it's mitt romney 's responsibility to sell people on voting for him, nobody else .
>> so michael, let me ask you, under what circumstances do you think romney 's association with donald trump could backfire? do you see this igniting the obama base or is this just something some fodder for the next 48 hours that's going to go away after tonight's big event.
>> i think it's a constant, looming source of potential embarrassment. i'm not surprised to hear peter report on the statement from the romney campaign, because they're so controlled, they're so choreographed, so scripted. they've had gaffes of course. but usually they're in control of their message. and so to have the donald , this powder keg on the stage next to mitt romney is the antithesis where they need to be. the observation, there's no political upside. if you're a birther you're already for mitt romney . how his this perceived by independents? that needs be to the constant refrain from now to november. there lies the potential source of em barsment. people say, we've litigated this, why in the world is mitt romney impugning his character by standing with trump after he's tweeting and going on " squawk box " promoting birtherism.
>> promoting that and trying to draw up a correlation of the validity of the president's education. listen to this. this was from this morning on cnbc.
>> he's really stonewalling it when it comes to -- he just doesn't want to give those transcripts. so what is he saying at columbia and harvard and his other college where he supposedly didn't have good marks and got into columbia? what is he saying about place of birth? these are just questions.
>> steve , as this talk is happening from donald trump , again, mitt romney not going to take credit for what some people are saying, however when they support him and show up with him on the same stage, people are going to say, all right, you're a reflection of the company that you keep. what does donald trump bring to romney 's campaign after tonight's event? we're talking about millions of dollars from tonight but is it rogue with newt gingrich ander in to gets into pockets? what's the bottom line?
>> oh, i can assure your audience it's more shallow and basic of an instinct than that. romney has enough money to win the president sy. only so many commercials to buy neen a recession. you're looking at a republican party establishment that doesn't stand nor anything other than we're not democrats. they try to beat democrats, they look at what democrats beat them with and think, we should try that. they see george clooney holding fund-raisers and cool hipsters hanging out with michelle obama at the beyonce concert. they are thatting we should hang out with donald trump and patronize them, they are so stupid, they will vote for us because we're cool. that's what drives this, this is what happens when you stand for nothing is you have to run on cliches and talking points and metaphors and you have to condesce condescend.
>> is romney meeting with sheldon adelson ?
>> reporter: there's a schedule meeting today in las vegas . two of them had some form of conversations during the course of the campaign. sheldon addleson, through the campaign, had been poring newt gingrich with at least $10 million, if not more, try trying to bankroll his campaign, specifically through the supoup pack, winning our future. as we talk about the impact the words of george will , he is owe believiating ignoramus. the gift, the romney campaign's making the bet that we will not be talking about donald trump in october, they feel confidently at the end of the day this is going to come down to jobs. they're going to take money, i would beg to disagree with steeb, the romney campaign believes there is more money out there, and they do need. they're confident this is a $1.5 billion campaign between the two, obama and romney . they think 800 million is what their opponent may raise, they hope to raise 3/4 of a billion dollars and at the end of the day for a lot of people regardless of what you say about donald trump , whatever your opinion is of the timing of this, and it's odd to everybody, for one or two news cycles we're talking about the birther movement and the extremism, not what mitt romney is trying to advocate, they're confident this is going to play out in their favor.
>> gentlemen, thanks so much. appreciate it.