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Tuesday, May 1, 2012 1:20 a.m.

Karl Rove blames Democratic policies for poor economic climate

Republican political strategist Karl Rove speaks Monday to members of GW Young America's Foundation and College Republicans in Funger Hall. Becky Crowder | Hatchet Staff Photographer

This post was written by Hatchet staff writer Sarah Margolis

Seasoned political adviser Karl Rove touted party lines Monday to the Young America’s Foundation and College Republicans, laying out conservative goals for the upcoming elections.

Rove, the former deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush, said presidential contender Mitt Romney needs to bolster trust among voters.

“You don’t have to agree with somebody 100 percent of the time to sort of occasionally say ‘okay I trust you, you may be right, I may be wrong,’” Rove said. “And this is going to be important for Romney.”

Rove faulted President Barack Obama for college graduates’ economic hardships, condemning the Affordable Care Act – a signature piece of Obama’s agenda – for raising interest rates on federal student loans and forcing the government to lend to students who were not previously guaranteed loans from private banks.

“We’ve got to be very clear that the administration has adopted policies which are adverse to [young voters’] interest,” Rove said. “We have the highest unemployment rate among 18- to 24-year-olds that we have had since we started taking statistics about age in 1948.”

Skirting discussion about the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, Rove directed his criticism at what he called unsustainable government programs like Medicare and Social Security.

He also called attention to the latest round of redistricting that he said will give conservative representatives an edge in this November’s election.

“We’ve helped ourselves out,” Rove said. “We passed fair and impartial lines that screwed the Democrats.”

Ultimately, he said, the election will come down to a small margin of independent and swing voters.

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