Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said this morning on “This Week” that presumptive GOP nominee for president Mitt Romney should “stop whining” about attacks on his Bain record and just defend himself.
“What are you going to do when the Chinese leader says something to you or Putin says something to you?” said Emanuel. ”I give him his own advice. ’Stop whining.’ Defend — if you want to claim Bain Capital as your calling card to the White House, then defend what happened to Bain Capital.”
Emanuel was defending Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter for suggesting that Romney might have committed a felony for claiming in his presidential financial disclosure form that he did not have an active role at Bain after February 11, 1999, despite maintaining formal titles and having signed SEC documents on behalf of the company after he said his active role ended.
“He said ‘CEO, sole shareholder, president.’ You can’t — as president of the United States you can’t have a sign on your desk that says, gone fishing.’ You can’t put that on that desk. It’s basically the buck stops there,” said Emanuel. “You can’t say to the SEC, ‘I was the CEO, chairman and president, but I’m not responsible. I’m not accountable.’”
The Boston Globe, citing SEC papers, reported that presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney was the “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president” of Bain Capital until 2002. The report seemed to conflict with what Mitt Romney has said in the past about his departure date from private equity firm, which Romney has said was in February of 1999, when he left to take over running the Winter Olympic Games in Utah. On Friday, Romney reaffirmed his position, when he told ABC News’ Jonathan Karl that he “left any responsibility whatsoever, any effort, any involvement whatsoever in the management of Bain Capital after February of 1999.”
Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H. appeared on “This Week” following Emanuel and slammed President Obama for his campaign’s attacks on Romney and stressed that Romney has already sufficiently addressed his Bain history.
“What’s most disappointing about this is the president, who ran as an inspirational leader, look where we are with him right now,” she said. “Unfortunately, with these attacks, it shows that he’s just a small politician and running on small-ball politics at a time when our country is facing grave, grave challenges.”
Ayotte also chided Obama for the American economy’s poor performance during his time as president.
“The economy and jobs are going to decide this election, and his record on that is abysmal. We’ve had over 40 straight months of over 8 percent unemployment, dismal jobs reports, and his policies have been a failure when it comes to turning our economy around,” she said.
In recent weeks Mitt Romney has come under intense criticism for his personal finances. Last week on “This Week,” Governor Martin O’Malley told Terry Moran that Romney “bet against America” when he put his money in Swiss bank accounts and tax havens and shelters.” David Axelrod, a senior campaign strategist for the Obama campaign, jumped on the reports and said Mitt Romney may be “the most secretive candidate that we’ve seen, frankly, since Richard Nixon.”