Obama Campaign Responds to Romney’s “Harvest” Comments


Mother Jones released some more Romney video today. This time it’s footage of Romney, circa 1985, laying out Bain Capital’s business philosophy. The clip was included on a CD-ROM that was created to commemorate Bain & Co.’s 25th anniversary and which was provided to David Corn by a former Bain employee. Romney has repeatedly pointed to his business experience and role at Bain as proof he can rev up the US economy and create more jobs than Obama can, but the vintage video confirms what many have been saying all along: that job creation was not the point of Bain. Young Mitt says the goal of the company was to buy stakes in undervalued companies and then “harvest them at a significant profit” years later.

The Obama campaign responded today by sending out a statement from Randy Johnson, a former worker at Ampad, the office supply company Bain acquired in 1992, proceeding to fire hundred of workers.

Today’s video confirms what I and other workers fired by Mitt   Romney’s Bain Capital already know: that Romney’s business experience   was never about creating jobs. Romney’s own words prove that his focus   was putting profits before people from the very beginning,   ‘harvesting’ companies to make a ‘significant profit’ for himself and   his investors – even if it meant investing in companies that shipped   American jobs to China. Any other explanation Romney puts forth about   this ‘private sector’ experience or understanding of the ‘real economy’   are just empty words from a man desperately trying to rewrite the past   in order to win an election.

The Romney campaign responded by trotting out its standard line about the candidate’s time at Bain.  “In  addition to starting  new businesses, Mitt Romney helped build Bain  Capital by turning  around broken companies, creating and saving  thousands of jobs,” Romney   campaign spokesperson Amanda Henneberg told the National Journal. “The problem today is that President Obama hasn’t been  able to turn around our economy in the same way.” As David Corn pointed out today, 1985-era Mitt Romney said it could take up to eight years to turn around a company. Now the candidate is willing to give the president less than four years to turn around the entire US economy.

Fact:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn’t fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation so we can keep on doing the type of journalism that 2018 demands.

Donate Now
  • Erika Eichelberger is a reporter in Mother Jones' Washington bureau. She has also written for The NationThe Brooklyn Rail, and TomDispatch. Email her at eeichelberger [at] motherjones [dot] com.