Failed leadership is the charge in the latest two attack ads from GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
In a 30-second spot titled “Mute Button,” the Romney campaign seizes on an anecdote from Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward’s new book, “The Price of Politics.”
The ad pulls from Woodward’s account of a phone call from President Barack Obama to Democratic leaders including then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during negotiations over the stimulus package. Woodward claims Pelosi hit “mute” on the phone as the president spoke.
“And as President Obama spoke, Nancy Pelosi hit the mute button, went on with their meeting, ignoring the President. Not even listening to what he had to say,” the ad’s narrator says. “If he cannot lead his own party, how can he lead America?”
Pelosi has denied that the incident ever occurred.
In another new ad, “Stand Up to China,” Romney renews his criticisms of the president on trade relations with China.
“China is stealing American ideas and technology. Everything from computers to fighter jets,” a narrator says.
“Seven times Obama could have taken action. Seven times he said no,” the ad continues, referring to the administration declining to cite China for currency manipulation and claiming it has cost 2 million American jobs.
Obama campaign press secretary Ben LaBolt called the ad the latest Romney “campaign reboot,” saying it ignores “that the president has taken unprecedented actions against China’s unfair trade practices.”
Added LaBolt: “The unfortunate thing for Romney is that while he accuses the president of not stopping China from ‘cheating,’ we now know that Romney has continued to invest in China.”