In a Romney campaign conference call centered on Barack Obama’s record on businesses, former New Hampshire governor John Sununu pulled no punches, saying that Obama failed to understand how Americans did business.
“The men and women all over America, who have worked hard to build these businesses, their businesses from the ground up, is how our economy became the envy of the world,” Sununu said. “It is the American way. And I wish this president would learn how to be an American.”
Later in the call, Sununu clarified his remarks, saying, “The president has to learn the American formula for creating business.” Instead of relying on government to create business, Obama should understand that his job was “to create a climate in which entrepreneurs can thrive.”
Sununu also blasted the Obama campaign for suggesting that Mitt Romney could be a felon. “If you introduce the word felon into the political discourse, you open yourself up again to the discussion of the Chicago roots and the Chicago political/felon environment that he came out of,” Sununu charged.
“He comes out of that murky political world in Chicago where politician and felon has become synonymous,” Sununu said of Obama. “It is an area where two of their governors are in prison. It is an area where Tony Rezko is a convicted felon and in prison and just happened to be the guy that did a smarmy real estate deal with the president in which Rezko pays top dollar and the president pays a discount and the deal is able to be done. So it comes out of his political genes if you will that this is the right way to do business.”
Continuing the Romney campaign’s theme this week of looking at the Obama donors who had benefited from his presidency, Sununu attacked the Obama administration for “practicing this crony capitalism of giving major, major grants of taxpayer money to people who are investors in businesses, but people who are bundlers and contributors to the Obama campaign or people who are related to people who have worked for the president or the vice president or good friends of the Chicago crowd that is in the White House.”
Sununu also attacked the Obama campaign’s latest negative ad, which suggests that Romney may not have paid taxes some years. “It just shows how stupid the Obama campaign is to think that somebody who has been a public businessman all his life and governor of Massachusetts — if he didn’t pay returns, you don’t think that the IRS would be knocking at his door?” Sununu said.
“In running that ad, the Obama campaign has once again demonstrated that they are clearly and unequivocally a bunch of liars,” he added.
Asked about Romney’s decision to not release more than two years of tax returns, Sununu defended him, saying that if Romney released, say, twelve years’ worth that would be “six feet of returns in which they [the Obama campaign] could find whatever nit they want to use a distraction.”
The call also included four business leaders discussing their support for Romney. “As an African-American woman, people think I need to vote for Obama because he’s black,” said Renee Amoore, president and CEO of the Amoore Group in Pennsylvania, which handles business and health care consulting. “Well, I’ve been black a long time and he won’t get my vote because of the things that he has done. While his supporters get payoffs, the middle class, like me … are suffering. I don’t want to lay off people.”
UPDATE: Obama campaign spokeswoman Lis Smith responds to the call by issuing this statement accusing the Romney camp of having “gone off the deep end”:
The Romney campaign has officially gone off the deep end. The question is what else they’ll pull to avoid answering serious questions about Romney’s tenure at Bain Capital and investments in foreign tax havens and offshore accounts. This meltdown and over-the-top rhetoric won’t make things better- it only calls attention to how desperate they are to change the conversation.