The chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) on Sunday said it was the fault of President Barack Obama and the Democrats for reports that a super PAC supporting presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney was considering attack ads featuring Obama’s former pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
“I know how it works,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus insisted to CNN’s Candy Crowley. “It’s the Democrats and Barack Obama that want the story out there. He wants this story to play out in the media because for every day that [Obama strategist] David Axelrod and this President don’t have to talk about their broken promises when it comes to jobs, the debt, and the deficit — and the more time they can talk about hypotheticals that may or may not come true — is a day they want to win on.”
He added: “So, look, this president’s got a bigger problem and his problem is no matter what he puts out there, no matter what distractions he puts out there, he can’t change the truth and escape the reality of where we are in this American economy. And it’s no good.”
The New York Times revealed last week that the the pro-Romney super PAC had proposed an ad campaign linking Obama to Wright. Their plan went so far as to suggest possible responses to charges of race-baiting if ads were to mention Wright’s “black liberation theology.”
After learning of the proposal to use Obama’s former association with Wright, Romney told reporters that he repudiated the effort.
“I think it’s the wrong course for a PAC or a campaign,” the candidate said. “I hope that our campaigns can be respectively about the future and about issues and about vision for America.”
But on Sunday, Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod said Romney had only “tepidly and reluctantly” condemned the super PAC’s proposed ad campaign.
“We have said [that Romney’s faith is] not fair game,” Axelrod told CNN’s Candy Crowley. “And we wish Governor Romney would stand up as resolutely and consistently, to refute these kinds of things on his side.”
Watch this video from CNN’s State of the Union, broadcast May 20, 2012.
(h/t: Think Progress)