(CBS News) Bain Capital, the private equity firm that presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney ran for 15 years, has played a central role in Mitt Romney's political career.
Romney says his experience at Bain proves he has a thorough understanding of the private sector and job creation. However, President Obama has a different take - that Romney's leadership at Bain shows he is concerned with profits over people.
The Obama campaign told Hotsheet it plans "on talking about it everyday" between now and the election. The Romney campaign said it is "going to continue to focus on the tens of thousands of jobs he helped to create."
In this election-year climate where jobs and the economy are the number one issue on the minds of Americans, voters are tasked with deciding whose approach to economic policy will best benefit them. Romney's experience at Bain is being deconstructed and rebuilt by the campaigns in the way each wants it to be portrayed. The Obama campaign is building up Bain as a roach-infested slum that will be bad for your health (and wallet) while the Romney campaign is constructing Bain into a luxury skyscraper few can resist.Continue »
(CBS News) A Federal District judge in Florida placed a preliminary injunction on new Florida voter registration requirements on third-party organizations, calling parts of the law "onerous."
Judge Robert Hinkle said the law imposes "a harsh and impractical" metric for voter registration organizations, referring to record-keeping requirements and a 48-hour deadline to turn registrations in to the state. Failing to adhere to the "prompt" deadline could result in fines for organization.
The suit was brought by three third-party voter registration organizations: League of Women Voters of Florida, the Florida Public Interest Research Group and Rock the Vote.
Hinkle wrote in his 27-page order that the deadline makes voter registration efforts "risky business."
"If the goal is to discourage voter-registration drives and thus also to make it harder for new voters to register, the 48-hour deadline may succeed," Hinkle wrote.Continue »
Co-host Gretchen Carlson introduced the video, saying "let's take a look back" at the president's term with the graphic "looking back at four years of 'change'" on the bottom of the television screen.
The video opens with crowds chanting "O-ba-ma," followed by words on the screen saying "Fox & Friends presents 'Hope and Change.'"
About 30 seconds in, ominous music begins and continues throughout the entire video that is interspersed with Mr. Obama's speeches and dire-sounding news anchors talking about the debt, the economy and the cost of gas.
At the end of the ad, the three co-hosts thank producer Chris White for doing a "great job" and the "tremendous amount of research" put into creating the video.Continue »
In a two-page memo titled "Romney Economics: It Didn't Work Then And It Won't Work Now," Obama for America senior strategist David Axelrod says Romney gave the people of Massachusetts "a false representation."
"Ten years ago, Mitt Romney told the people of Massachusetts that his experience in business uniquely qualified him to strengthen the state's economy," adding that Romney said he was "a 'job creator,' whose experience as a corporate buyout specialist had given him special insight into how to grow the economy," the memo says.Continue »
Updated 3:10 p.m. ET
(CBS News) In less than a week, voters in Wisconsin decide if they want to keep their Republican governor, Scott Walker, who has been at the forefront of controversial policies that have divided Democrats and Republicans in the state and nationally. But the outcome of the recall election against Democratic challenger Tom Barrett, Milwaukee's mayor, could have much broader implications for the presidential race in November.
"The Wisconsin recall is what the Spanish Civil War was to World War II," Mordecai Lee, a governmental affairs professor at the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, told Hotsheet. Lee said the state is "a warm up, a testing ground" for the presidential race.
Once again a battleground
Although Wisconsin has voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in every election since 1984, the state is considered a key battleground this year. President Obama beat Republican John McCain by 13 percent in 2008, but Republicans made massive inroads in 2010, winning the governorship and taking control of the state legislature. In addition, Tea Party-backed Ron Johnson defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold, a favorite of progressives.Continue »
(CBS News) This Memorial Day, both President Obama and the Republicans dedicated their weekly address to American service members; however, the Republican address (in video above) focused mostly on their plan for the economy.
Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kan.), who represents Fort Leavenworth and Fort Riley, said the "blessing of liberty" should be honored. "That is why helping to create jobs and grow our economy will continue to be Republicans' focus in the weeks and months ahead."
The two-term member of Congress said the Republican plan for economic growth "emphasizes long-term growth" and not "short-term stimulus."
Central to the Republican's economic plan is developing American oil and gas production, including the construction of the XL Keystone pipeline.
"The President demonizes home grown energy and pursues tax policies that advantage foreign energy over domestic," Jenkins said.
UPDATED May 25 10:38 a.m. ET
(CBS News) At a campaign rally in Des Moines, Iowa on Thursday evening, President Obama attacked Republican challenger Mitt Romney's Bain Capital experience, but sought to make clear that his criticisms are not an attack on the private equity industry.
"There may be value for that kind of experience, but it's not in the White House," the president said to campaign volunteers and supporters at the Iowa Fair Grounds, adding that "corporate buyouts" are "not the president's job."
The president continued to challenge the experience of Romney -- a co-founder and partner at Bain Capital for more than a decade -- saying that his "world view" was skewed toward corporate interests.Continue »
(CBS News) In an interview on MSNBC's "Hardball," former Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich sat down with host Christ Matthews in a lengthy, frank and fast-paced conversation. Here are some of the funny, provocative, or odd exchanges Gingrich had with Matthews:
- Gingrich on Romney as president: "He is a very methodical person. He is prepared to systematically do what he thinks is right for the country. And I think he might turn out to make a surprisingly good president."Continue »
(CBS News) President Obama stopped in Newton, Iowa to campaign for a renewable energy tax credit set to expire at the end of the year. The tax credits are part of the president's "To-Do" list for Congress.
Speaking at TPI Composites, which manufactures wind blades for wind turbines and employs 700 people, the president told the crowd that extending the tax credit is "a big deal."
"This industry -- thanks in large part to some very important tax credits -- has now taken off," the president told the crowd largely made up of TPI workers.
The president noted the importance of the tax credit to Iowa. "The state of Iowa now gets nearly 20 percent of all your electricity from wind. Overall, America now has enough wind capacity to power 10 million homes," the president said.Continue »
(CBS News) Businessman and reality TV host Donald Trump is once again entering the political fray -- by hosting a upcoming fundraiser for Mitt Romney, participating in an online contest and by possibly starting a super PAC to oppose President Obama's re-election.
In the first of a two-part interview with conservative website Newsmax posted on Wednesday, Trump said he is "thinking about just doing my own PAC," referring to an independent third-party organization able to raise unlimited funds for political activity.
The real-estate mogul said his super PAC's television advertisements "would show how badly we're doing as a country - how disrespected we are as a country."Continue »
The video, which runs nearly six minutes in length, focuses on a Bain-owned company, Ampad, which bought SCM, an office supply production plant in 1994. The video uses local news reports and SCM workers to tell a story of slashed jobs, reduced wages, and cut pensions after Bain took over.
"I understand if you gotta cut back, [conduct] layoffs, that's part of the business, but you don't come in and take everything everybody's got and destroy a business. That's what they did," former SCM worker Jerry Rayburn said in the video.
Ampad filed for bankruptcy in 2000 after Bain made $100 million dollars, the ad charges.
At the closing of the first day of the conference, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said NATO is making "clear our long term partnership with the Afghan people beyond 2014."
On May 1, President Obama signed a strategic partnership agreement with Afghan President Hamid Karzai that would enable U.S. and NATO forces to remain in Afghanistan beyond 2014 to assist with security and counter-terrorism. But NATO nations indicated hesitation, as many in Europe - and in the United States - are tired of the war that has lasted more than ten years.Continue »
The strong state convention turnout means that the Republican presidential candidate will receive 32 of the 40 Minnesota delegates for the Republican National Convention in Tampa in August, according to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.
Paul placed second in Minnesota's February 7 caucuses, with 27 percent support behind Rick Santorum, who won 45 percent.
The Texas congressman announced last week that he would stop actively campaigning in states yet to vote, and rather work to organize to win delegates for the convention - a strategy that proved successful in Minnesota this weekend as well as in Nevada and Maine, where he also won a majority of delegates earlier this month.Continue »
Updated 10:20 p.m. ET
(CBS News) The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) backed a resolution on Saturday in support of marriage equality.
"We have and will oppose efforts to codify discrimination into law," Roslyn M. Brock, chair of the NAACP board of directors said in a statement.
The resolution passed by the organization's board of directors says "the NAACP has opposed and will continue to oppose any national, state, local policy or legislative initiative that seeks to codify discrimination or hatred into the law or to remove the Constitutional rights of LGBT citizens."Continue »
(CBS News) Leaders from the Group of Eight nations, meeting at Camp David in Maryland, said Saturday they are interested in keeping Greece part of the European economic zone.
"We agree on the importance of a strong and cohesive Eurozone for global stability and recovery, and we affirm our interest in Greece remaining in the Eurozone while respecting its commitments," the G-8 leaders said in a statement.
Leaders from France, Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, Japan, Russia, Canada and the United States are discussing the challenges facing a global economy, with the fragility of the eurozone central to the agenda.
Today's statement may temporarily alleviate the possibility that Greece could be dropped from the economic coalition because of its debt crisis and subsequent political gridlock. The country's harshest critic has been German leader Angela Merkel.Continue »