The Republican National Committee will launch a “grassroots, media and on-the-ground” effort during President Barack Obama’s bus tour through the Midwest this week, The Daily Caller has learned. The RNC has dubbed the trip the “Debt-End Bus Tour,” or “DEBT.”
RNC chairman Reince Priebus will hold a press conference on Monday with Minnesota GOP chair Tony Sutton in Cannon Falls, Minn. — the first stop on the President’s tour — to draw attention to the slow-growing U.S. economy.
The RNC campaign comes after Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and other surrogates, canvassed the Ames Straw Poll to campaign against GOP candidates. In the week heading into the straw poll, the DNC launched a campaign called “Extreme Aims” to target the Republican presidential hopefuls.
Now, it’s the GOP’s turn.
In a guide the RNC plans to hand out Monday morning, it slams Obama’s economic policies and criticizes him for taking a so-called non-campaign trip without producing a plan to deal with the country’s debt.
In the guide, the RNC calls President Obama’s debt plan “A Big Ol’ Hunk of Nothing on Two Thick Slices of Nada.”
The RNC will also attack the administration for refusing to take responsibility for the recent credit downgrade from Standard & Poor’s. When CNBC’s John Harwood asked Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner if the president’s policies were responsible for the downgrade, he responded: “Absolutely not.”
Posed the same question, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney replied by saying, “I couldn’t say it better than the Secretary of the Treasury said it.”
Another part of the RNC’s messaging is that Obama should be held accountable for the results of his policies since assuming the presidency. The state of Iowa, the guide points out, has shed 21,100 jobs since Obama became president.
Similarly, Minnesotans have lost 51,000 jobs and Illinois has seen 125,700 jobs disappear.
Illinois, Obama’s home state, has an unemployment rate of 9.2 percent.
The president’s bus tour will take place August 15–17, and will take him to Iowa, Minnesota and Illinois.
The White House has defended the bus tour as an administration undertaking, not a campaign event. Nonetheless, it is receiving criticism for fielding a taxpayer-funded bus tour that only focuses on three 2012 battleground states.
The trip comes as President Obama senses significant discontent from his liberal base, for caving to Republican demands during the debt crisis and not producing a jobs plan of his own.