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Axelrod offers backhanded compliment to Romney

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In an interview with Reuters, Chief Strategist for the Obama campaign David Axelrod had some unusually nice things to say about Mitt Romney.

"Mitt Romney had many, many debates and he was very good in them," Axelrod said. "By and large when he needed to bring it, he did. He memorizes his set pieces and he delivers them well. He obviously has no hesitance at all about going after someone."

Of course, the goal here isn't to actually be nice. The goal is to build up Romney so he falls that much harder in the event of a slip up during the actual debates.

The president's traveling press secretary Jen Psaki did the same thing today while talking with press aboard Air Force One. "We know that Mitt Romney and his team have seemed to prepare more than any candidate in modern history, starting in July, taking time out during the Democratic Convention, taking that week to prepare," she said. "And they have made clear that his performing well is a make-or-break piece for their campaign and his candidacy."

The first presidential debate takes place at the University of Denver on Oct. 3.

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