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Guests: Reince Priebus and David Axelrod

By Face the Nation, Face the Nation - June 3, 2012

BOB SCHIEFFER: Today on FACE THE NATION, Romney clinches the Republican nomination and turns up the political heat as the economy cools.

MITT ROMNEY: The President's policies and his handling of the economy has been dealt a-- a harsh indictment.

BOB SCHIEFFER: The President's top strategist David Axelrod went to Romney's backyard to say hold it right there.

DAVID AXELROD: After selling him-- himself to Massachusetts as an economic savior, the Massachusetts record was alarmingly weak.

BOB SCHIEFFER: Axelrod is with us this morning as is the chairman of the Republican Party Reince Priebus. It's all about politics and we'll continue the conversation with former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, and columnist Bob Shrum and Michael Gerson.

On page two we'll bring in David Sanger and Daniel Klaidman authors of two new books that peel back the secrecy around the administration's war on terror and the Iranian nuclear threat. Plenty to hash out and now that former President Bush's official portrait has been unveiled at the White House--

PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: You'll now be able to gaze at this portrait and ask, what would George do?

BOB SCHIEFFER: And why not?

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. David Axelrod is the senior strategist for the Obama campaign. He joins us at the table. Well, when you tried to talk about your strategy up in Boston; the Republicans organized a rally to try to drown you out. So we'll-- we'll let Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican Party talk in a minute, but we'll give you a chance to say what you have to say first. What about that rally up there?

DAVID AXELROD (Obama Campaign Senior Strategist): Well, look, we went up there to make a point about Governor Romney's economic record. Governor Romney offers himself as a job creator, a kind of economic oracle, and he's saying these same exact things that he said ten years ago when he ran for governor of Massachusetts. And what happened? Massachusetts plunged to forty-seventh in job creation. They lost manufacturing jobs at twice the rate of the country. They grew jobs at one-fifth the rate of the rest of country. It wasn't the record of the job creator. He had the wrong economic philosophy and he failed. And I was disappointed that they chose to send a bunch of campaign staff to try and drown out the speakers. But you can't drown out the-- the record, Bob. The record is very clear.

BOB SCHIEFFER: The New York Times says that the weakening recovery is a serious liability for the President's reelection. Romney, as you just said, said the job numbers out Friday were devastating. Is the President going to have to do something here that he hasn't tried before? Is he going to have to do something to jump start this economy?

DAVID AXELROD: Bob, first of all, obviously the-- the numbers this month were disappointing. The President said when he took office back in 2009 and-- and the country was losing eight hundred thousand jobs a day that it took years to get into this mess and it was going to take long, persistent effort to get us out of it. He took some tough decisions, the auto intervention being a major one, and we've had twenty-seven months of private sector job growth now and 4.2 million jobs created or 4.3, but we have to do more. He's asked the Congress for a series of steps to get construction workers back to work, rebuilding our roads and bridges. To put teachers back in the classroom to help homeowners renegotiate, re-- re-finance their homes under these low interest rates, homeowners who are responsible and their homes are under water. All these things would help the economy. What was striking about what happened on Friday was how quick the leaders of Congress were out there wringing their hands. These are the architects of obstruction, and now they're complaining about the pace of-- of the recovery. They should put down their political hats and join us and help solve these problems.

BOB SCHIEFFER: But aren't you going to have to do more than just attack Congress, I mean?

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