The fallout continues after the Boston Globe’s report Thursday noting that Bain Capital documents indicate Mitt Romney was still with the company after 1999, and Romney campaign surrogate Gov. Bob McDonnell of Virginia demanded that President Obama’s campaign end its ads attacking Romney’s time with the company.
“All of these attacks are things that happened after Mitt Romney left as the managing director of Bain.… To the degree that there is any truth to these sorts of outsourcing allegations, they happened after 1999 when he was not the managing director,” McDonnell, often mentioned as a possible vice presidential candidate, said. “It’s false and he ought to pull those ads.”
The Obama campaign has made Romney’s tenure at Bain the center of several campaign ads, alleging that Romney was responsible for Bain investing in companies engaged in outsourcing, claims that the Romney campaign has vehemently denied.
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The Globe, whose story reignited the political firestorm, has stood by its reporting.
In a correspondence obtained by Politico, Globe editor Martin Baron told the Romney campaign there is “no basis for publishing a correction.”
“The Globe story was based on government documents filed by Bain Capital itself. Those described Gov. Romney as remaining at the helm of Bain Capital as its ‘sole stockholder, chairman on the board, chief executive officer and president’ until 2002,” he said.
The Romney campaign, in its complaint to the Globe, called the story a “re-hash of old allegations that first appeared in other publications and which have been found to be false by independent fact-checking organizations.”
The campaign asserts that though Romney was listed as holding a prominent position within Bain following his departure in February 1999 to manage the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, he was not involved in “management or investment decisions during this period.”
The campaign was backed by Bain, which issued a statement Thursday that Romney “has had absolutely no involvement with the management or investment activities of the firm or with any of its portfolio companies since the day of his departure.”
FactCheck.org, one of the independent organizations referenced by the Romney campaign, agreed that there was “little new” in the Globe’s article, and maintains its conclusion that Romney wasn’t actively involved in Bain after February 1999 will remain unchanged.
Regardless of the truth behind either side’s claims, there is some indication that the pro-Obama camp’s persistent attacks on Bain are winning over supporters.
The pro-Obama "super PAC" Priorities USA released a memo Wednesday claiming that Bain has become a “significant liability” for Romney.
Citing a poll conducted by Global Strategy Group and Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group in the battleground states of Colorado, Ohio, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Florida, Priorities USA claimed that more voters say Romney’s experience at Bain makes them less likely to vote for him, 37% to 27%.
Claiming that its own anti-Bain ads are working, Priorities USA pointed out that in the 11 markets they’ve advertised in within those five states, Obama leads Romney by eight points (49% to 41%) compared with a three-point lead in those without the ads (46% to 43%).
Romney campaign spokesman Ryan Williams dismissed the Obama campaign’s efforts Friday.
“The Obama campaign has jumped the shark – they can blow smoke all day long, but they can’t hide the facts.”