Mitt Romney sat down for interviews with ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN and Fox News on Friday, in a hastily scheduled response to the swirling controversy surrounding his ties to private equity company Bain Capital.
Romney spoke with ABC's Jon Karl, NBC's Peter Alexander, CBS' Jan Crawford, Fox News' Carl Cameron and CNN's Jim Acosta. The interviews took place between 3 and 4 p.m., and aired on "The Situation Room," Fox News' "Special Report" and all three nightly network newscasts.
The slate of television appearances came at the end of a rough week for the Romney campaign. Romney's record at Bain Capital — which has been a significant point of criticism for the candidate thus far — was called into question again after new records suggest he stayed on at the company until 2002. They contradict his claim that he left in 1999, and he was not responsible for workers laid off or companies that went bankrupt under the private equity firm after that date.
In all five interviews, Romney maintained that he had nothing to do with Bain after 1999, and demanded an apology from the Obama campaign for suggesting he may have committed a felony if this was not true.
The interviews also marked a departure from Romney's usual media strategy. Since embarking on his 2012 campaign, the candidate has largely favored Fox News for his appearances.
He stayed off Sunday shows for twenty consecutive months before appearing on "Fox News Sunday" in December 2011. Romney recently expanded his press exposure to CBS, ABC and CNN. He spoke with CBS News' Bob Schieffer in June for his first non-Fox News Sunday show appearance of the current campaign.