Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney added two Washington veterans to his media relations team on Friday after weeks of criticism that he didn't respond strongly enough to a barrage of attacks from the Obama campaign.
The hiring of Danny Diaz and Kevin Sheridan, two longtime Republican operatives, was aimed at helping the Romney campaign react better to media reports and Democratic attacks, according to a campaign official.
The most relentless assaults from President Barack Obama and his team have targeted Romney's tenure as the head of the private equity firm, Bain Capital.
On Friday, Romney scrambled to do interviews with the three major networks, Fox News and CNN in response to questions about whether he was working at Bain when it cut certain jobs.
Since Romney became the all-but-certain Republican presidential nominee in the Nov. 6 election, he and his campaign have stumbled in their responses to some of the attacks.
Other times, their errors were unforced. Romney senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom suggested in March that Romney could soften more conservative positions adopted during the primaries, like an Etch a Sketch toy, for the general election with Obama.
More recently, he said in an interview that Obama's healthcare mandate carries a penalty and not a tax. That stance undercut the primary Republican criticism of Obama's 2010 healthcare law and was reversed by the candidate days later.
Kevin Madden, another longtime Romney aide, has joined Romney on the road to improve the campaign's messaging.
Diaz worked with Madden on the Bush-Cheney campaign of 2004.
"I know all too well just how talented he is and how valuable he is to an entire team of people working together," Madden said Friday. "He makes everyone around him play at a higher level."
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