Looking a dressage horse in the mouth
August 2nd, 2012
10:30 AM ET
2 years ago

Looking a dressage horse in the mouth

(CNN) – The liberal group MoveOn.org will run a thirty-second television spot in battleground states mocking Rafalca, the dressage horse competing at the London Olympics that is co-owned by Ann Romney.

The group said the total buy amounted to five figures, which will be used to air the ad in Nevada, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

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The ad is told from the perspective of the horse.

"My name's Rafalca, the Romney's dressage horse," the ad begins. MoveOn.org uses a poorly-executed English accent as the voice of the Romney's horse.

"You might have seen me execute 'leg yields' and 'flying changes,'" the ad continues, using terms from the sport of dressage. "How do I pull off such grace and athleticism while looking so good? Maybe it's because the Romneys spend $77,000 per year on my upkeep."

The ad comes to a grim conclusion, stating: "After Mitt Romney repeals health care and ships your jobs overseas, I daresay your life won't be nearly as pampered as mine. After all, you're not one of his horses."

In a statement, MoveOn.org's executive director said the group wasn't lampooning the Romney's care of their horse – just the expense of it.

"There's nothing wrong with taking good care of a horse, but there's something messed up about a millionaire who spends twice what most Americans make in a year caring for a horse, but wants to take away people's health care and offshore their jobs," Justin Ruben wrote. "We're rooting for Rafalca and all of our Olympians to bring home the gold, but we're sure not rooting for Mitt Romney to send jobs overseas. Voters had best steer clear of Romney unless they're looking for a ride on a one-trick trickle down pony."

In mid-July, the Democratic National Committee briefly used video of the Romney's Olympic-bound horse to portray the candidate as "dancing around the issues," but later discontinued using Rafalca because it could be seen as offensive to the GOP candidate's wife.

Ann Romney began riding horses when she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1998, and has said the sport has helped lessen the symptoms of the inflammatory disease.

CNN's Kevin Liptak and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Ann Romney • MoveOn
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Randy, San Francisco

    What isn't funny are the tax breaks Romney receives for the training and upkeep of this horse. With a net worth of 250 million dollars Romney does't deserve or need this extra money.

    August 2, 2012 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  2. Whatever

    What a waste of money. This is so stupid it shows where the left mentality is at., Ridiculous!!!!! All that money on ad buys could have been used to feed hunger but instead is used for this. What a pity!

    August 2, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  3. Myviewis

    I don't think animal lovers will like this mocking of the care a horse is being given, I know I don't like it and we should take care of animals. I appreciate anyone that spends money on the well being of an animal. The thought of mocking one of our USA team athletes is sad and low. This ad really shows the hatred and how split our country really is that an Olympic athlete is being used for personal gain. Go USA Team!!!!!!!!!

    August 2, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    If republicans repeal the ACA, there might be more tax breaks for the dressage party plutocrats.

    August 2, 2012 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  5. Expat American

    What comes out of the business end of that million dollar horse is equivalent to the tax plan Romney has in store for the poor and middle class.

    August 2, 2012 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  6. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It would be nice if the people making as much as the Romneys would do more publicly to support programs like food banks and job training locations. It would reduce the need for the government to do it.

    August 2, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  7. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Remember when the right wingnuts cheered when Chicago did not get the olympic bid? The GOP is not much into 'country first.' KMA Mittens.

    August 2, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  8. Sniffit

    Tissues....get your tissues here....

    "I don't think animal lovers will like this mocking of the care a horse is being given,"

    You guys are soooo predictable that MoveOn already released a statement pointing out that it's a misinterpretation to say they're mocking the care the horse is being given and that the point is the amount that's being spent and how it highlights Mittens' obvliviousness to the plight of the middle-class. Read the WHOLE article before posting.

    August 2, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  9. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    All that $77,000 that Romney got in tax breaks for his horse could have feed a lot of hungry homeless veterans. KMA Mittens.

    August 2, 2012 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  10. Sniffit

    "All that money on ad buys could have been used to feed hunger but instead is used for this."

    All that money on recreational dressage horse tax deductions could have been used to feed hunger.

    FIFY

    August 2, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  11. Expat American

    ... it shows where the left mentality is at...All that money on ad buys could have been used to feed hunger but instead is used for this. What a pity!
    -----–
    As if the Republicans are about to put aside some money to feed the poor white racists who vote for them; but more importantly who actually believe the GOP cares about them?

    August 2, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  12. Etch-A-Sketch Mitt RobMe Out-sourcing-Jobs Outsourcing-his-Money and Outsourcing America

    @Myviewis

    If animal lovers will not like this mocking of the care of a horse, then let the mitt robme's give up the $77,000 TAX DEDUCTIONS for the caring of the horse....it's WELFARE CHECKS FOR THE RICH!!!.......they can afford to take of their horse on their own dime; not on the backs of TAXPAYERS!!!!

    mitt & ann robme's look down on middle class Americans and call them names!....they wanna repeal healthcare, ship American jobs overseas, and increase TAXES on the poor............yet, they are the ones getting a free TAX RIDE and taking more TAX CUTS from ordinary AMERICAN TAX PAYERS than they are putting in!!!

    Do you get it?...the ROBME's DID NOT PAY TAXES FOR 10YRS....THAT's WHY THEY ARE REFUSING TO RELEASE THEIR TAX RETURNS!!!!

    August 2, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  13. nick

    so they cant spend their money to keep a healthy beautiful looking horse? but , yall can WASTE donation money from people who want it used for good ... yall could take the 5 digits and pay for mammograms. JERKS

    August 2, 2012 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  14. Core republican Values

    Mitt gets more tax breaks on his horse than most families make in an entire year.

    Share it with the world!

    August 2, 2012 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  15. Larry L

    Remember now... Romney likes "cheesy grits" and he has friends who own NASCAR teams! That makes him a good-ole-boy just like his under-educated, bigoted, angry and fearful followers. To prove his ability to relate to the 99% he's having one of those pitiful, cramped, poor-people houses built far to the rear of one of his properties. It only cost about 400k so he of course won't enter it himself or allow his family to be seen inside... it but he does plans to let some of the help stay there on special occasions... like Cinco de Mayo.

    August 2, 2012 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  16. Rudy NYC

    Can he talk? "A horse is a horse, of course, of course. ....."

    August 2, 2012 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  17. Larry L

    @Myviewis

    I don't think animal lovers will like this mocking of the care a horse is being given, I know I don't like it and we should take care of animals.
    ----------------------------------------------------
    Your concern is so touching! I'm going to stop contributing to "Save the Children" and divert all of my charitible contributions towards "Save the Dancing Horses for Spoiled Rich People to Watch Fund". You are the perfect lap-dog for an economic class you'll never join.

    August 2, 2012 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  18. Dan

    The money Romney spends on his horse is his; he earned it. It is none of our business. I am broke. I went broke paying for a thoroughbred mare and two foals now she has another. I love horses and I'm grateful for the years I had with them. I won a lot of races beat a lot of dishonest peoples horses. The money WE spent on the care of our horses was earned honestly.
    Does Obama or anyone else think we should not be allowed to do this? Is it sinful or immoral? Is giving a horse a good life something to be ashamed of? I am not ashamed of what I did; I am ashamed of the way Obama is trying to raise himself up by trying to put his opponent down. That's not the high class we should expect from our president!

    August 2, 2012 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  19. steven

    It is his their money, not tax payers money. Leave them alone, how they spend it should be of no concern to level headed people. How personal funds are used and private business cunducts itself has no relation to how taxpayers money and government programs would be handled. As far as jobs overseas, do you know how many jobs obama has created-–Overseas!!!

    August 2, 2012 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  20. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Humm,
    I hope the people voting in November has some "Horse" Sense. Otherwise we may all be put out to pasture.

    August 2, 2012 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  21. James

    @whatever

    not sure if serious...... ad buy = 5 figures, romney horse care = 5 figures, what's the difference?

    August 2, 2012 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  22. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Ray – I agree. If we don't reelect Obama, we are all screwed. KMA Mittens.

    August 2, 2012 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  23. Tony

    "After Mitt Romney repeals health care and ships your jobs overseas, I daresay your life won't be nearly as pampered as mine. After all, you're not one of his horses."

    At least the horse is more specific on Romney's plan for America than Romney himself. Romney talks about goals (cut taxes, balance budget, reduce regulations) but gives no details on how to achieve them. Republicans have the wrong Romney running.

    August 2, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  24. Myviewis

    Larry L

    @Myviewis

    I don't think animal lovers will like this mocking of the care a horse is being given, I know I don't like it and we should take care of animals.
    ------------------
    Your concern is so touching! I'm going to stop contributing to "Save the Children" and divert all of my charitible contributions towards "Save the Dancing Horses for Spoiled Rich People to Watch Fund". You are the perfect lap-dog for an economic class you'll never join.
    ----------------------------

    Actually, thanks to my economics classes is why I realize that many people are making salaries taking care of this horse which extends into a range of services such as grounds upkeep, feed & water, truck driver, repairs, boarding,veterinary services, electricity, truck & trailer repairs and insurance, liability insurance, association fees, overnight accomodations, riding apparel, fuel, truck & trailer payments, trainers, equine insurance, permits, licenses, saddle. Lots of people, companies benefit from 1 horse.

    August 2, 2012 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  25. v_mag

    steven said: "It is his their money, not tax payers money."

    -
    The point is (as right wingers intrinsically know but choose to overlook), the Rob-money family gets all this money they spend on their horsie BACK in tax breaks. It's not their money! It's WELFARE MONEY that comes from the taxes I pay! They and their buddies have rigged the system so that there are loopholes that only the rich can make use of to cheat American taxpayers.

    You righties have to know that. You can't all be so stupid that you believe these guys get rich and richer by working. They do it by cheating, and I hate a cheater. Sure, there are poor people who cheat welfare, but that's pennies compared to the massive tax cheating done by the Mittlers of this country. You want to root out tax cheats and welfare bums? Start with the big fish like Rob-money.

    August 2, 2012 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
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