Romney gets 'fat cat' treatment
April 16th, 2012
10:37 AM ET
3 years ago

Romney gets 'fat cat' treatment

(CNN) – The liberal MoveOn.org took on Mitt Romney's opposition to the "Buffett Rule" through a play off the Lolcats meme in a new ad released Monday, according to the group.

The 30-second spot, set to run on cat-themed Animal Planet programming, accuses Romney of letting "fat cats rig the system" through a series of images that show large felines on a private jet and swimming in money, among other rich-themed scenarios.

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"When the wealthiest one percent pay a fair tax rate like the rest of us it keeps the American dream alive for everyone," the narrator in the commercial said. "So tell Mitt Romney, kittens are cute. One percent fat cats who won't pay their fair share? Eh, not so much."

Although the independent organization would not disclose the size of the ad buy, they said the spot would run on numerous Animal Planet shows, including "Big Cat Diary," "My Cat From Hell," "Cats 101" and 'Too Cute Kittens," coinciding with Tax Day and Monday's Senate vote on the "Buffett Rule."

The provision, opposed by leading Republicans including presumptive nominee Romney, would level a minimum tax rate on high income earners. Proponents of the President Barack Obama-backed measure argue the change would constitute a fairer tax code while opponents of the law point to the relatively low revenue expected from the rule.

Romney has voiced opposition to the bill, named after investor Warren Buffett, calling it a "new source of division" by targeting the most successful in the country.

But MoveOn.org Executive Director Justin Ruben used the ad as a chance to criticize the former Massachusetts governor and former executive as a "fat cat" himself.

"Americans who have been playing by the rules are losing because fat cats like Mitt Romney are playing by a completely different rulebook," Ruben said in a statement. "President Obama's Buffett Rule is a basic first step towards asking fat cat millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share like the rest of us kitties."

The Republican National Committee continued their criticism of the rule in response to the ad.

"This is just another Obama shiny object designed to distract from his failure to turn the economy around," press secretary Kirsten Kukowski said in a statement. "Raising only enough money to run the federal government for 11 hours, President Obama has been unable to sell the tax gimmick even after holding over twenty events to do so and liberal groups pulling out all the stops."

Team Romney did not respond to a request for comment.


Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Mitt Romney • moveon.org
soundoff (209 Responses)
  1. spud490434943

    A not-so-stupid former republican - your comment makes no sense. I guess you believe there is no such thing as a rich fat cat democrat. You need to leave your basement and get away from you p.c. for a while and look at things from another perspective.

    April 16, 2012 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Personhood candidate Mittens is the only presidential candidate who has also signed legislation to restrict the sale of guns, but he still gets the endorsement of the NRA. It makes one think that the NRA may not be colorblind.

    April 16, 2012 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  3. yuri

    The putatively pure flip-flopper has risen to the occasion of spreading whoppers, time and again. Not a soul is reliable in politics, let alone perfect, but Mitt's mega prevarications make him a distinguished dissembler. Watch out, if he is the next POTUS, middle class will, most likely, vanish into thin air.

    April 16, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  4. A True Centrist

    The "Buffet Rule" is a brilliant play by the Dems. President Obama has raked up almost $5 trillion in debt in 3 plus years, so he and the DNC are using this nonsense of a tax bill to push the talking points away from his utter failure. The so called Buffet Rule will bring in at the top end of the estimates $4 billion in its first year. To put that into perspective, the US will soon be paying more in interest on its debt per day than income this will bring in.

    BUT, it's a strong gimmick for the Dems who have no solutions or strategy to turn this country around. The best they can do is to keep distracting the public from focusing on the three and a half years of complete failure. The sad part is that it will probably work because the Republicans have about the same amount of solutions.

    April 16, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  5. Jules

    My guess is that the reason Mitt Romney is reluctant to release his taxes for the last 10 years is that we will all then know that he has had his money in a blind trust only for a couple of years or so and that he was actually the one who put his money in foreign banks to get out of paying income tax on it. If this is correct, the American people deserve to know about it before they vote in Nov.

    April 16, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  6. Roger Korby

    Want to kill the stock market? Increase the capital gains tax. The minute Pres. O does that, I sell all my stocks iimmediately. Fair share? How about those who pay nothing. I am tired of the assumption that those who succeed had everything handed to them on a silver platter. Since when did hard work, the desire to succeed, and high achievement become sins? Why do so many people feel entitled to half the income of those who make 250k+ annually?

    April 16, 2012 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  7. Jules

    yes, there are fat cat Democrats such as Warren Buffett and others who actually do care about the middle class because they are smart enough to know that if the middle class has not purchasing power they will not do nearly as well as when they do.

    April 16, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  8. Roger Korby

    Jules, Romney is doing nothing illegal. Some of Obama's wealthiest donors do the same.

    April 16, 2012 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  9. Fair is Fair

    Henry Miller is absolutely correct.

    April 16, 2012 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  10. A True Centrist

    @Bill from Georgia "And, BTW, even income from investments is still income, and should be taxed the same as a "working man's" income."

    And will you give money back to the investors when they lose the money they risked? Will you still get the same level of investment that companies currently do to use in R&D etc if you have to risk your money but get no incentives to do so?

    Yes, on paper it seems like a good idea. However, you and the rest of the left at some point need to look at reality.

    April 16, 2012 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  11. Scott S.

    I have no problems with the rich paying whatever tax rate they're set up to pay. I have a problem with the fact that they pay this tax rate and continue to see massive income increases, while the rest of us, some 95% of the country, has to make sacrifices to scrape by while we keep getting fed this illusion that some how, if you lower taxes, the economy will magically be fixed. It doesnt' work that way, and it makes very little sense that lowering taxes would help what these GOPers keep screaming is the principle issue (other than making Obama a one-term president) in reducing debt.

    April 16, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. Anonymous

    Guess we should define whats "fair", sure these fat cats make millions more then the average Joe, but they will end up paying millions more in taxes then the average Joe.

    April 16, 2012 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  13. Bill from GA

    For those commenters who don't like it that almost 50% don't pay Federal Income Tax, thank the Bush Tax Cuts, with the $1000 Child Tax Credit and lower rates.

    Nobody I knew working in the 90's was really upset with paying a reasonable tax rate to live and work in the USA; we thought it was worth it to live in this great country. We were proud to be paying down the debt in the last years of the Clinton administration.

    April 16, 2012 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  14. Fair is Fair

    Bill from Georgia said:

    "And, BTW, even income from investments is still income, and should be taxed the same as a "working man's" income.""
    -------
    Bill, you can look this fact up rather easily. EVERY time the capital gains tax rate has been raised, it has resulted in a net reduction of revenue to the treasury. EVERY time, WITHOUT FAIL. Don't take my word for it – just look it up.

    April 16, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Why isn't the GOP war against women, seniors, veterans, the middle class, the poor, workers, public employees, union workers, the auto industry, the uninsured, the under insured, and college students considered class warfare?

    April 16, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  16. Lynda/Minnesota

    2007: Romney Refused To Release His Tax Returns While Running For President. [AP, 8/13/07]

    2002: Romney – Who Pumped Nearly $5 Million Of His Own Money Into His Campaign – Refused To Make His Income Tax Returns Public. “Romney, who has pumped nearly $ 5 million of his own money into the campaign, has refused repeated requests by O’Brien’s campaign to follow her lead and make his income tax returns public.” [Salt Lake Tribune, 11/4/02]

    1994/2002: Romney Refused To Release His Tax Returns While Running For Senate And Governor. [Washington Post, 6/19/07]

    Refusing to release his tax returns seems to be Mitt Romney's only real constant. Releasing only 2010 probably isn't going to stop the "what's he hiding under the rug" dialogue...

    April 16, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  17. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Remember when these fat cats go broke, we get to bail them out.

    April 16, 2012 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    We need to roll back the capital gains rate to what it was during the Clinton years. At the very least, we need to get rid of the loophole that allows people to declare income derived from other people's investments as capital gains. [hedge fund manager's commissions, for example] That sort of income is earned income, not capital gains. The argument for the lower rate has always been that you are risking your own money. So what is the justification for calling it capital gains when it is not your money at risk, but someone else's money? Why are commisions earned on investing someone else's money called capital gains, not earned income?

    April 16, 2012 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  19. Sirned

    If money was unlimited like Repubicas keep telling us the dollar would end up being worth less. No Repubicans money is finite. There is only so much of it to go around every year. Right now 80% of Americans only get to share 7% of all the wealth. Romney thinks 7% is too much and is proposing cuts......Fox has really done a wonderful job getting average Americans to vote against their own families economy .

    April 16, 2012 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  20. yolanda

    The saddest part of this whole fiasco is that Obama is making this move to gather votes, rather than trying for a fundamental overhaul of the tax system, which is sorely needed, but doesn't fit nicely into his reelection effort. So much for leading the country.....

    April 16, 2012 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  21. Dean

    All these people harping on Romney and his taxes. No mention being made of the numbers of Obama's appointments that were found to owe millions in back taxes. Love the leftist hypocrisy.

    April 16, 2012 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  22. Larry L

    Ronald Regan, the icon of the conservative movement, was in favor of a tax code exactly like the Buffet Plan. He understood the math and knew the concept was fair. Was he a socialist?

    April 16, 2012 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  23. Bill

    Poor Mittens – he is the wrong candidate at the wrong time with the wrong message (whichever message he claims stake to today anyway). Not to be trusted, unlikeable, aloof and frankly, completely out-of-touch. The GOP really has itself in a pickle with this brylcreemed buffoon. McCain looks like a winner compared to Romney. GOP, you should start thinking about 2016 now.

    April 16, 2012 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  24. Bill from GA

    To A True Centrist: when you lose money in investments, you have the opportunity to refile (amended return), up to 3 years later, and use 'income averaging' to balance losses against gains But we all have ups and downs in life; not all of us can balance them out so easily.

    And investments in stocks only directly go to a company during the IPO. Most gains go to those trading in the stock as it (hopefully) goes up in value. But you probably knew that.

    April 16, 2012 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  25. joe_political_spectacle

    The fat cat should be stopped by all means otherwise, he would confuse all the kitties to be mice. Guess what? we might be his dinner one day. Remember that most employees of comapnies taken over by Bain Capital when the fat cat was the CEO were served as his dinner as they lost their jobs and livelihood and the fat cat is getting fatter everyday...Shame!

    April 16, 2012 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
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