Romney recently posed with a supporter donning a controversial campaign sign. Another photograph shows Romney holding the sign.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney has a message for those who are criticizing him for recently posing next to a supporter’s controversial campaign sign: “lighten up.”
The former Massachusetts governor took heat over the weekend from one town-hall audience member for recently posing with a supporter who donned a sign saying “"No to Obama, Osama and Chelsea's Moma."
The sign is an obvious grouping of the two leading Democratic presidential candidates - Sens. Hillary Clinton, the mother of Chelsea Clinton, and Barack Obama - with Al Qaeda leader and 9/11 organizer Osama Bin Laden.
"I don't look at all the signs when I'm having pictures taken,” Romney said during a town-hall meeting in Exeter, New Hampshire when pressed to apologize by one member of the audience. The comments were captured and made available to CNN by New Hampshire Public Radio.
“I have a lot of pictures taken with people, Romney also said. “I don't really spend all that much time looking at the signs and the T-shirts and the buttons. I don't have anything to say about a sign somebody else was holding."
"You know what? Lighten up slightly," he added. "There are a lot of jokes out there. I'm not responsible for all the signs I see.”
– CNN's Steve Brusk and Alexander Mooney