Mitt Romney doesn’t like poor people. Reminiscent of the time when Katrina hit New Orleans during George Bush’s presidency, Kanye West appeared on national television to ask people for their financial support. But viewers were stunned when the rapper blurted out, George Bush doesn’t like black people.
Well, I can’t say that Mitt Romney doesn’t like black people, however, based on secretly recorded remarks that Mitt Romney made last May, one can reasonably conclude that the Republican Presidential candidate doesn’t like poor people.
In the video, published by Mother Jones magazine, the Republican presidential nominee tells a private audience of campaign donors that the backers will vote for Obama “no matter what” and that he does not “worry about those people.”
“There are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it,” Romney said.“These are people who pay no income tax.”
He added that his job “is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”
The author of the Mother Jones article said the fundraiser took place on May 17th, in Boca Raton, Fla., at a the home of Marc Leder, a private equity manager.
In the video, Romney uses language that is far more blunt than it is in his public appearances. His remarks could undermine recent attempts by his campaign to present him as a caring and charitable leader in his church and community.
Speaking to reporters last night in Costa Mesa, Calif., where he was attending a fundraiser, Romney stood by his comments, saying he was talking about campaign strategy, not his vision for the country.
“It’s not elegantly stated. . . . I’m speaking off the cuff in response to a question,” he said. “We have a very different approach, the president and I, between a government-dominated society and a society driven by free people pursuing their dreams,” he added.
Asked what he meant by the words “victims” and “personal responsibility,” Romney said that he was “talking about the political process of drawing people into my own campaign.”
“Of course individuals are going to take responsibility for their lives,” he said. “My campaign is about helping people take more responsibility and becoming employed again, particularly those who don’t have work. This whole campaign is based on getting people jobs again, putting people back to work,” he said.
“This is ultimately a question about direction for the country. Do you believe in a government-centered society that provides more and more benefits or do you believe instead in a free-enterprise society where people are able to pursue their dreams?”
The Obama campaign quickly seized on the video.
“It’s shocking that a candidate for president of the United States would go behind closed doors and declare to a group of wealthy donors that half the American people view themselves as ‘victims,’ entitled to handouts, and are unwilling to take ‘personal responsibility’ for their lives. It’s hard to serve as president for all Americans when you’ve disdainfully written off half the nation,” Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said in a statement.
Some voices are suggesting that Romney’s remarks should disqualify him for the highest office of the United States.
Further remarks from the video are scheduled to be released today.
In the YouTube video, posted under the username “Romney Exposed,” the GOP candidate recalls going to China “to buy a factory there,” which he describes as having “a huge fence with barbed wire and guard towers” and where “young women between the ages of 18 and 22 or 23″ worked long hours and earned a “pittance.”