Washington (CNN) – The Obama re-election campaign is glossing over the off message positive comments former President Clinton made about presumptive Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, during an interview on CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight Thursday.
They are instead focusing on one line where Clinton described the tactics some private equity investors use.
"Invest in a company, run up the debt & force people to lose their retirement and fire them," a senior campaign official pointed out in paraphrase.
However, Clinton was making a comparison of two kinds of investors. Those who buy, strip and destroy companies for profit, and others also driven by profit, but with the goal of making the companies better, even though they too can fail with equal consequences.
In the interview the former president said Romney's time at Bain Capital formed a "good business career," and he referred to that career as "sterling."
Asked by CNN to comment on a message that runs counter to the campaigns attack on Romney's record, the official insisted the key point was Romney was "good at making money for himself and his partners."
A spokesman for the White House, Josh Earnest, told reporters Friday aboard Air Force One that he didn't see any news value in Clinton's comments.
"It's not apparent to me that President Clinton made news in this interview," he said. "It seems that he was drawing the same kinds of conclusions and making the same argument that the president's re-election campaign has been making."