Washington: Republican challenger Mitt Romney on Tuesday tried to drive a wedge between President Barack Obama and former president Bill Clinton, who has taken an increasingly prominent role in Obama`s re-election effort with three months left until the election.
A new Romney campaign ad tries to cast Obama as a big-government liberal, accusing him of dismantling the groundbreaking welfare reforms Clinton put in place.
The Democrats recently announced that Clinton would have a prime speaking role at the party`s national convention in September, which will serve as a formal push into the final weeks of campaigning for the November election.
With the race tight and Romney and the Republicans leading in fundraising for a third straight month, the Democrats are seeking to take advantage of Clinton`s popularity and strong economic record while in office.
But the new Romney ad criticises Obama for removing work requirements from federal welfare regulations, a key element of Clinton`s 1996 welfare reforms.
The ad contends that Obama simply wants to hand out welfare checks, while Romney would restore the work requirement.
"We will end a culture of dependency and restore a culture of good hard work," Romney told an audience yesterday in Illinois.
Obama`s "policies will take America backward, back to the discredited liberalism of a bygone era where bigger government programs and bigger government checks were the answer to every problem, and accountability was not on the agenda," said Lanhee Chen, Romney`s policy director.