Mitt Romney turned down the volume on abortion as a priority for his campaign this week, but supporters of President Obama said he is falsely downplaying the issue with voters who don’t like his opposition to reproductive rights.

In an interview with the Des Moines Register published Tuesday, Romney said there is “no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.”

On Wednesday morning, a top Obama campaign official charged that the former CEO is trying to soften his views in an attempt to “close the deal, just like he did in the boardroom.”

“He’s trying to soften his image,” said deputy Obama campaign manager Stephanie Cutter, “not just with women voters but with all voters.”

The Romney campaign pushed back against the early reaction to the Register interview, saying there has been no change in the position Romney staked out in the Republican primary. Romney is “proudly pro-life and will be a pro-life president,” a spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Responding to Cutter’s remarks Wednesday, Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg dismissed her critique as a sign of desperation.

“As Barack Obama said in 2008, ‘If you don’t have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from,’” Henneberg said. “Americans are tired of the same old politics as usual, and they won’t be fooled by a flailing campaign’s manufactured outrage.”