Team Romney came out of the gate swinging at President Obama's "Romnesia" jab, his handling of Libya, and the whole "binders full of women" flap, with surrogate Marco Rubio blasting away at all three. Addressing Romnesia, Rubio said, "that fires up his base," but for Americans "trying to make up their minds who to vote for, what they're wondering is, 'Well, that’s very cute, Mr. President,' but what are you going to do for the future?" He dismissed the binders outrage as "silly outrage, it's not even real outrage." Romney campaign adviser Kevin Madden piled on, saying, "I don't think the message to voters right now ought to be playing Scrabble with your opponent's name" and that the Obama campaign, for lack of vision, has reduced itself "to very small attacks like ‘Romnesia’, along with this talk about binders, this talk about Big Bird." Obama campaign manager Stephanie Cutter defended talk of Big Bird as important "because that’s the only thing Mitt Romney could point to as to how he’s going to reduce the deficit." A look around your Sunday dial, as per Politico:
- David Axelrod on NBC's latest poll: "You guys also issued polls in the last week that showed us with an 8-point lead in Iowa, I think we had a lead in Ohio, you’ve showed us having a lead in Florida. I don’t know how to square all the polling that NBC is releasing."
- Lindsay Graham on Iran talks: "As we talk with the Iranians, whether it’s bilaterally or unilaterally, they continue to enrich, and the vice president and the president have said we will do nothing without coordinating with Israel. I think it’s pretty obvious they are trying to continue a dialogue using our election cycle in a pretty clever way."
- Gallup editor Frank Newport on his methodology: “People come at you from either side if they don't like the results. Our methodology is extremely solid. We’re very open about how we do it."
- Graham on Libya: "The Benghazi consulate was becoming a death trap. The British left, the Red Cross left. We should have closed that consulate long before Sept. 11, and I put that on the president of the United States.”
- Dick Durbin on GOP and Libya: "Darrell Issa does a document dump with sensitive information about those in Libya who are helping keep America safe. It shows the lengths many will go to politicize this tragic situation."
- Newt Gingrich on Libya: “Should Ronald Reagan not have talked about (the Iran hostage crisis) for 444 days? The fact is, we're in the middle of a mess in the Middle East, the mess keeps evolving, there continue to be incidents. If that offends the president, then that’s his problem and he ought to get over it."