Sumter, South Carolina (CNN) – Mitt Romney gave a handful of cash Saturday to a woman who had told him she was struggling financially after an event in Sumter, South Carolina.
An aide said the GOP candidate gave the supporter "what he had on him" - about $50 or $60.
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The woman, Ruth Williams, met Romney earlier in the week and told him she was having trouble making ends meet. On Saturday, Romney recognized Williams while he was shaking hands with supporters after a rally, an aide said.
Romney spoke to the woman and handed her several bills.
"He was kind to me," Williams said. "He held onto me and he made Gov. [Nikki] Haley and them come see about me."
Williams told reporters that on Wednesday she had seen Romney's campaign bus on the highway and followed it to an airport. Aides then invited her to come meet the former governor at an event in Columbia.
"I was on the highway praying and said, 'God, tell me how to get [my] lights on, and I pulled up to a stop sign and his bus was there,'" Williams said.
Williams has been out of work since October and is caring for an ill son. She said that after meeting Romney she had also met South Carolina state treasurer and Romney supporter Curtis Loftis, and said he had given her money. She said she used the money to pay her light bill.
A Romney campaign aide confirmed Loftis had given Williams money.
Williams has been volunteering at Romney's state headquarters in Columbia since the original meeting, she said.
"God didn't tell me to go to nobody else," she said when asked whether she had approached other presidential candidates. "He told me to pray for Romney."
The cash gift is notable from a candidate who has said he would not give away "free stuff" as president but rather would focus on cutting back on federal spending and stimulating private sector growth.
"I know there are some people who run for president that will say, 'Hey, I'm going to give you more. I'll find a way to give you some more. I'll change the rules and give you more money," Romney said at a December event in Conway, New Hampshire. "I'm not that guy. If there's a competition for who will give you the most free stuff, go vote for that guy."
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Fifty or sixty bucks for someone struggling to makes ends meet? Sure it's a nice small itty bitty gesture, but if he really wanted to help, why not offer her a paid position on his staff????? That money will be gone in a day and that poor woman will be right back where she was. Struggling.
Since he's a corporation he figures to write it off as an expense. LOL
Looks like Romney hasn't figured out the process to become President yet. Hey Romney, you buy votes with taxpayer money not your own! Ask Obama how its done, he's an expert.
This was a really great act of Christian charity; too bad it had to be turned into a public news event.
Romney knows $ like Sun Tzu knows War. Hire him.
Mr.Romney is an out of touch rich half mexican guy who carries no cash because he does not go to stores he has everything done for him, bad PR stunt not pleasing to read about...
Seriously? CNN just gave Mitt Romney front-page advertisement space for $60? Wow, that's the cheapest advertising campaign ever...
Wow, a politician who actually has concern for the little people, how about that.
I thought handing out cash to voters was a NO NO?
Respect. I saw pictures of Mitt Romney help families in California during the fires... he and his brothers were in dirty t-shirts, worker gloves... pulling out a tree stump. Sweat! In the trenches. That "hard work" and "hard labor" is what we should expect in a President... Not someone who has a socialist agenda: Obama
Look at all of you, you rather that lady starve than accept a few bucks from the big bad republican. You people are disgusting.
What kind of Grammar is that?
What a socialist.
I thought the Republican Party stood for "No Hand-Outs" This sure seems to go against everything they stand for ahhaha Ridiculous
I can't wait until Romney's landslide victory in Nov. The democrats are terrified of Romney. California for Romney!
Do you hear Eva Peron in the background? "Don't cry for me Argentina."
This man thinks he can fool everyone.We know who you are.Money pls.This man has sold his sole long ago.
cheap stunt – we don't want handouts and we dont envy you; you arrogant, insincere S.O.B
No matter how hard he tries, he's just so out of touch...
Was it, maybe, only an act of kindness?
I applaude Romney for his kind heart. All of you complainers are so ridiculous. Automatically you people just assume that if someone does something nice it is ONLY for the spotlight. So pessimistic. He earned my respect. Thanks for trying to help someone in need, Mitt. I'm sure this woman was extremely grateful.
What a shameful, ignorant stunt. If this is the best the GOP has to offer, I'll either vote for Obama or not vote at all.
Why didn't he give her a paying job instead. He is a 'job creator'....right?
ron paul for president 2012
Yeah, like he expected to buy votes this way? Get over it. If he wanted, he could buy his votes in a much better way. The guy just wanted to help the woman out. Shut up.