Below are some of the notable comments made Sunday on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” Guests included White House senior adviser David Plouffe, ABC News’ George Will, Romney national campaign co-chair and former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, political strategist and ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd, former Obama economic adviser and ABC News consultant Austan Goolsbee and editor and publisher of The Nation Katrina vanden Heuvel.
Responding to Romney’s Immigration Criticism
1) PLOUFFE: It’s ironic coming from Governor Romney, who said he would veto the DREAM Act, whose immigration policy during the primary seemed to consist of just sending 11 million people home, asking them to self-deport.
Mentioning Congress Republicans’ Aim to Help Romney
2) PLOUFFE: There was a remarkable story this week where members of Congress in the Republican caucus were openly talking about doing nothing on the economy over the next five months because it would help Mitt Romney. And so whether it’s failing to move forward on the DREAM Act, failing to move forward on putting teachers back to work, failing to do all the things we could do right now to help the economy and middle class, this Congress is just saying no.
Reacting to Hubbard’s German Op-Ed
3) PLOUFFE: T he president said very clearly, this is the Europeans’ responsibility to solve this, and it’s within their power to do so. I think there can be some lessons learned for how we dealt with our crisis. I mentioned that you see Republicans in Congress here saying they don’t want to do anything on the economy over the next few months so it helps Governor Romney. His chief economic adviser, Glenn Hubbard, wrote an op-ed article in Germany, that basically went against what our government is trying to do, to encourage the Europeans to take action. It was a remarkable thing to see and really unprecedented.
4) PLOUFFE: Europe doing the right things here to stabilize their situation is important to our small businesses, our workers, the middle class here, and overall economy. And to inject yourself in this for some short-sighted partisan gain, perhaps, is really unbelievable.
WILL: Romney said something very funny the other day, and I think there’s a gem — gem in there of a real campaign theme. He said suppose the government were in charge of cellphones. The government, first of all, wouldn’t have given us a preclearance for it. When it finally did, it would award one single contract to an Obama contributor, and the result would be a phone the size of a shoe and powered by a solar panel.
WILL: The White House must be petrified that the most important man in their life in some sense is a guy named Mario Draghi, who no one knows. He’s the head of the European Central Bank. And he can have a vast effect on our election here.
DOWD: If he’s going to get re-elected president of the United States, he has to disqualify Mitt Romney in this race. It’s the only way he can win. And I think that’s the mistake they’ve made over the last month-and-a-half, is they’ve spent too much time talking about how great their policies are and how what they’ve done — when the country just does not believe it.
DOWD: I think the Republicans disagree with the way it was done, but what was done was the right thing to do. Of course it was great politics, in the midst of an election cycle, where the Latino vote could ultimately decide this election. And anybody that’s on the opposite side of Glenn Beck is going to look rational. So I think all of those things, I think Romney is put in a — not a very good defensible position on this, because he has to argue it should have been done differently, but the president did the right thing in most people’s minds, and it is a great political move
DOWD: The president I think is most concerned about his re-elections, because the unknown events that are likely to happen, whether it’s Greece or other things in Europe, are out of his control. And they’re most likely to be negative. The events that are most likely to happen over the next five months are likely to be negative. That would tilt this race to Mitt Romney.
PAWLENTY: The president’s message, it could be worse and it’s somebody else’s fault four years into his presidency, that’s not a basis to re-elect somebody. We don’t give out participation ribbons for being president of the United States. You actually have to do something. His signature accomplishment, Obamacare, is unconstitutional.
PAWLENTY: There is only one position, there is only one person who can be the nation’s vision-caster, who can be the person who leads and takes the hit to get things done. And if you study history, that is almost always the president. And you have in Barack Obama somebody who’s never had an executive position prior to becoming president. He promised this, you know, willingness to be bipartisan. He quickly turned away from that and turned into one of the most partisan presidents in history.
GOOLSBEE: I think that the argument that the president promised comprehensive immigration reform and didn’t get it done to be said by the Republicans is like the legislatively version of the “Why are you punching yourself?” game as a kid, in which they’re preventing it from happening and then saying, “Well, see, he didn’t do it. See, he didn’t”
GOOLSBEE: The president should have a mea culpa, that we have gotten into a place that was very different from what the campaign wanted it to be from 2008, one in which — and, look, I think you could blame more the Republicans, but I’m sure the Republicans would say more you blame the president.
Katrina vanden Heuvel
VANDEN HEUVEL: The Latino movement that is erupting in this country isn’t going to support a party whose champion is talking about self-deportation.
The president should have a mea culpa, that we have gotten into a place that was very different from what the campaign wanted it to be from 2008, one in which — and, look, I think you could blame more the Republicans, but I’m sure the Republicans would say more you blame the president.
VANDEN HEUVEL: The idea that President Obama is an arsonist sounds a little like Newt Gingrich going to the country the other day or to a fundraiser and saying that if he didn’t vote — that a vote for President Obama would be unpatriotic. To me, that is language this country doesn’t need in times of economic pain. It sounds awful Palin-esque.