"Face the Nation" transcripts, May 27: Gibbs, Gillespie and Senator Lugar

(CBS News) Below is a rush transcript of "Face the Nation" on May 27, 2012, hosted by CBS News chief Washington correspondent Bob Schieffer. Guests include President Obama senior campaign adviser Robert Gibbs, Mitt Romney senior campaign adviser Ed Gillespie, and Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.). A roundtable on presidents include Michael Duffy and Nancy Gibbs, authors of "The President's Club," Robert Merry, author of "Where They Stand" and Douglas Brinkley, author of "Cronkite."

BOB SCHIEFFER: Today on FACE THE NATION, on this Memorial Day, talking politics and Presidents, past, present, and future.

As summer kicked in it was already getting hot on the campaign trail and the mud flew--or was that mud?

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: You know his speech was more or like a cowpie of distortion.

I don't know whose record he twisted the most, mine or his.

MITT ROMNEY (TIME): I mean look at him right now he just doesn't have a-- a clue what to do to get this economy going. I do.

BOB SCHIEFFER: Bottom line, the polls are closer than ever, and the campaign nastier. Romney's people love painting the President as a European socialist. And the President's people actually compared Romney's old company to a bloodsucking bat.

JACK COBB (Steelworker, 31 Years): It was like a vampire. They came in and sucked the life out of us.

ANDY CRUZ (Steelworker, 29 Years): It was like watching an old friend bleed to death.

BOB SCHIEFFER: We will check in first with top advisors from both campaigns, former GOP Party chair Ed Gillespie and the President's one-time press secretary Robert Gibbs. We will talk with Indiana's long time senator Richard Lugar, who lost his primary earlier this month to a candidate who wants less, not more compromise to break the Washington gridlock.

Then on Page 2, our summer Sunday book break, as we talk with the authors of three new books. Robert Merry, author of the upcoming Where They Stand: The American Presidents in the Eyes of Voters and Historians; TIME magazine's Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy, authors of The Presidents Club; and CBS News contributor and presidential historian, Douglas Brinkley whose new biography, Cronkite, comes out this week.

It's summertime in Washington and this is FACE THE NATION.

ANNOUNCER: From CBS News in Washington, FACE THE NATION with Bob Schieffer.

BOB SCHIEFFER: And good morning, again. And welcome to FACE THE NATION and what better time to talk a little politics. Top advisors to both candidates are with us here this morning. We're going to start with Robert Gibbs who's the senior advisor to the Obama campaign. Then, we'll hear from Ed Gillespie, senior advisor to the Romney campaign.

Mister Gibbs, last week, several Democrats weighed in, and expressed really some dismay with a tone that the Obama campaign's attack ads have taken, particularly the ones attacking Mitt Romney's tenure at Bain Capital, we played a little of it in the beginning of the broadcast, but the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday the campaign would actually become more aggressive with these attacks. They seem to be buying more time to run these ads. Have you done some polling? What-- why-- why-- why do- why so aggressive so soon?

ROBERT GIBBS (Obama Campaign Senior Advisor): Well, Bob, I don't think you need polling to understand why people have a visceral reaction to Mitt Romney's time as head of Bain Capital and let's be clear, this is the central and only point that Mitt Romney brings up that in the words of his campaign would make him an economic savior for this country. You saw that tape with some steel workers whose plant in Kansas City was loaded up with debt, jammed into bankruptcy, Mitt Romney and his investors walked away with tens of millions of dollars and, look, they were very good at that, making money for themselves and for the investors, but what Bain Capital never did was focus on job creation. That's not what Bain Capital does. It loads up companies with debt. It takes money out of those companies and pays those investors. It's not about job creation, and that's what Mitt run-- Mitt Romney is running on. And look, we-- we've-- we've seen this experiment in Massachusetts. He did the same thing when he ran in 2002 in Massachusetts and took that state's job creation numbers to forty-seventh in the country. So we have seen this experiment, we have seen it in Massachusetts quite frankly, we saw it in 2007 and 2008 where we turned our economy over to speculators and it crashed on the middle class.

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