White House senior adviser David Plouffe charged that the Romney campaign is "built on a tripod of lies," criticizing the Republican ticket for their attacks on President Obama over welfare, Medicare, and small businesses.
"Right now their campaign is built on a tripod of lies," Plouffe told me this morning on "This Week." "A welfare attack that is just absolutely untrue. The suggestion we're raiding Medicare - absolutely untrue. And then this whole 'we can't build it' nonsense."
"I don't think we've ever seen a presidential campaign ever that's built on a foundation of absolute lies. And I think ultimately they're going to pay a price for that," Plouffe added.
Plouffe, Obama's top political adviser and the architect of his 2008 election victory, defended the president over a Romney campaign attack ad charging that he has moved to gut the work requirements from welfare reform.
"On welfare, it's absolutely untrue. Everyone who looked at it is outraged," Plouffe said of the Romney ad on welfare. "This is a president who believes in his core that hard work must be rewarded. And if people aren't willing to work hard, or be irresponsible, we shouldn't help them."
Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz charged Thursday that the Romney campaign was playing the race card with the welfare attack, using it as a "dog whistle" for voters to consider race.
"[W]hy else would Mitt Romney make a supposedly casual joke about the president's place of birth…? Why else would he spend millions of dollars of Mitt Romney campaign money talking about [welfare]… except to be a dog whistle for voters who consider race when casting their ballot?" Wasserman Schultz told U.S. News and World Report.
Plouffe would not say whether he agreed with Wasserman Schultz that the Romney campaign was playing the race card, saying, "As to their motivations, I'll leave that to them."
"They'll have to answer what they're trying to do," Plouffe said. "I think they are trying to suggest somehow that we're trying to give a bunch of handouts to people, which is just not true."
While defending the president, Plouffe notably refused to say whether Americans are better off than they were four years ago, even after I pressed him multiple times on the issue. He did say we have "clearly improved from the depths of the recession. "