Obama camp wastes no time highlighting Romney tapes
September 18th, 2012
02:00 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama camp wastes no time highlighting Romney tapes

(CNN) – President Barack Obama's campaign quickly used freshly released tapes of Mitt Romney speaking at a private fund-raiser to blast their rival, using apparent man-on-the-street interviews to cast the GOP nominee as woefully out of touch with average Americans.

"I actually felt sick to my stomach," one person says in the Obama campaign web video, which appears to have been shot in Chicago's Grant Park. Obama's re-election team is based in the Windy City.

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Another voter, after watching the video on an iPad, says the clip "shows that he's out of touch, that he thinks that half of the country is feeling like victims."

"As a president, if you try to separate by demographics, separate by classes, you're not really a president," says a third.

In the footage of Romney, released on the website of the left-leaning magazine Mother Jones, the Republican presidential candidate argues that nearly half of Americans will vote for Obama because they rely on government support.

"There are 47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what," Romney says in one clip. "There are 47% who are with him, who are dependent on government, who believe that, that they are victims, who believe that government has the responsibility to care for them. Who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing."

At the White House briefing Tuesday, press secretary Jay Carney said he wasn't sure if the president had seen the tapes, but also used the opportunity to slam Obama's rival.

"Setting aside, you know, what Gov. Romney thinks, I can tell you that the president certainly doesn't think that men and women on social security are irresponsible or victims, that students aren't responsible or are victims," Carney said. "He certainly doesn't think that middle class families are paying too little in taxes."

Not all of the president's team was quick to expound on Romney's comments, however. After a campaign event in Iowa, Vice President Joe Biden would only say that Romney's "words speak for themselves" when asked about the clips.

On Tuesday morning, an Obama campaign official said the president's team was considering using the clips in future political ads.

In a press conference late Monday evening, Romney did not disavow his remarks but said that they may have been "not elegantly stated."

Also see:

– Eastwood: If they were 'dumb enough to ask me…'

– In new tape, Romney casts doubt on peace in Israel

– Hatch might 'die before his term' ends, opponent charges

– Biden on Romney tape: 'words speak for themselves'

Filed under: Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. quelee

    This is in response to Richard – the 72 year old retired engineer living on social security and some investments. Hello!!! You are part of the 47% Mitt Romney is talking about.

    September 18, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  2. maf

    @ Richard – have you ever heard of 'boundaries" with your daughter. I know it's tough to raise 4 kids in this economy, but you slinging mud at the President isn't really a solution. Romney doesn't have the solution either, but you raise the level of discourse by calling the President names . . . NOT!

    September 18, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  3. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    When God hands you a gift like Romney's foot-in- mouth disease it is your solemn duty, and you're honor bound to use it wisely.
    I personally would have erected old-fashioned highway billboards of his every ignorant utterance caught on tape or freely given via a campaign press conference.
    You don't need any ammunition Mr. President. Let the rich boy give it to you for FREE.

    September 18, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  4. Randy, San Francisco

    Now that Romney has exposed what is really in his heart, seniors should reconsider casting a vote for him. Right out of his mouth, he "has no concern for you." Better bet, vote for President Obama.

    September 18, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  5. UDidntBuildThat

    Romney was wrong!!! According to the Census it s 49% of people living on Obama welfare. So what do u want? More people dependent on the Govt as Obama does to secure power for the Dems or
    do u want a person who has the experience, track record and know how to grow an economy to create jobs?

    Obama's policies are not working and more people are dependent b/c of his failed policies. Wise up America. U r on govt dole b/c of this President and he loves it!

    September 18, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    "Sorry dems, Romney was exactly correct. I am a retired engineer, 72 years old and live on my Soc. Sec. And a very modest pension, along with income from investments. My daughter and her husband will vote for Odumbo because they told me that if Romney wins, they would lose their food stamps and Medicaid. They have a very modest income but with 4 kids they never pay any taxes. I bought the home they live in and so far this year I've paid over $10,000 of their expenses like water, gas and electric as well as house payments. Odumbo has bought the election by extending unemployment to two years and given thousands of bloodsuckers free this and that. They have no reason to work."

    Hey genius: you're part of the 47% Mittens was talking about. That you're voting for him makes him incorrect.

    September 18, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  7. NVa Native

    The very sad thing is that of the 47% of the American population that Romoney is denegrading probably 50% are Working Poor so misinformed or filled with bigotry they vote against their own self interests by voting Repub?!
    Fox media & hate radio do a good job keeping 27% of the population stupid and afraid enough to vote Repub. The term tee-baggers comes to mind.

    September 18, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    "Hey genius: you're part of the 47% Mittens was talking about."

    Poor dear seems a bit confused, doesn't he?

    September 18, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  9. myviewis

    I listened to the tape and Romney is not talking about not worrying about people, he was talking about the usual tax cuts for the rich gimmick Democrats always use in their campaigns and how he doesn't see why worry about those people changing their minds about the higher taxes for the rich.

    Leave it to typical Democrats, always shysters to change, spin, trick people. Romney is correct that Americans who feel victims and feel we all owe them something will vote for Obama and so will those that fool the government for monies to live on so they don't have to work and are healthy and strong and can work.

    September 18, 2012 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  10. shmen columbia

    Poor Howie Kurtz. Big difference between Obama's guns and bibles comment vs. Mitt's 47% remark. Obama went on to say he needed to do a better job reaching out to the folks he mentioned, whereas Mitt says he doesn't care. What would Jesus say? Probably something along the lines of taking care of the least among us. Big turning point in the election.

    September 18, 2012 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  11. Mike Texoma

    Why would someone who holds half of America plus most of his own voters in such utter contempt want to be President? No good answer to that one?

    September 18, 2012 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  12. Max

    Sickening & Weird!

    This is no 'gaffe', it reflects Romney's inner thoughts on those who ain't in the affluent class as he is. He was born into riches and didn't really have to work for more. Romney is becoming more and more sickening and weird to watch & listen to...he's getting on the very 'nerves' of the middle class and the American populace in general. Simply put, 'Romney is not ready for the president's office'.

    September 18, 2012 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  13. Jane

    @myviewis and @UDidn'tBuildThat – – Since I'm sure you both consider yourselves 'patriotic Ahmurcans' I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt that you don't realize (maybe because you haven't heard it on Fox News) that a large part of the 47% of 'moochers' and 'freeloaders' that Romney is dismissing are our men and women in the military, who Do Not Pay Income Tax.

    September 18, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  14. Wilson

    Romney is " Obama lite," which means that although he is not the perfect candidate, he will cause less damage to this country than the full blown Obama. Thus Romney for 2012!!! The only way to slow down the destruction of this country until a "real" president comes along!!!

    September 18, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  15. mrindependent

    Anyone still justifying the claim that 47 or 49% of the people are welfare dependents are in fox news fact proof bubble. Any rudimentary reading shows that that statistic is completely false.

    September 18, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  16. zp

    They can highlight tapes, but can't address our flags and embassies being set aflame around the world??! Our national security is at risk – that is the most important news today. This story is a diversion, and an attempt to cover-up the Obama administration's atrocious failures.

    September 18, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  17. DumbasRocks [R]s

    myviews - Here's your prescription for not being condemned as a joke:

    #1 buy the other half of your brain.

    #2 finish high school, and pay special attention to those irritating english classes

    #3 if you can score higher than 250 on the reading/comprehension section of the SAT, you may then return here and try again.

    If our voting laws were not so LIBERAL, all [R] would be required to fulfill the above before they could vote.

    September 18, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  18. UDidntBuildThat

    ExRepublican-Romney does not care about middle class and poor. Mitt is not fit to be president.
    Romney why I am paying 30% taxes and you only paying 15% of taxes.
    Romney is digrace to our country.
    U have a problem with Obama paying 21% of his income and u paying 30%? No
    What did Obama do to reform the Tax Code. Oh another broken promise imagine that?
    Do u even understand the tax code that tax investment income at a lower rate? No shocker!!
    U r an x Republ. well I am Bill Gates!

    September 18, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  19. UDidntBuildThat

    Snifft -"Hey genius: you're part of the 47% Mittens was talking about. That you're voting for him makes him incorrect."
    Hey genius, Mittens said "most". Can u read? Mittens is 100% correct. Most of the free loaders will vote for Obama.

    September 18, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  20. American People

    The American People want to see Willard's tax returns for the last 20 years. We want to see how unjust your 13% (so YOU say) tax rate is. Willard is also a criminal for not disclosing his off-shore accounts.

    September 18, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  21. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Romney wants to be President of 53% of the American people and the other 47% aren't Americans so we don't matter. If Romney wants a private country club of his own, if he doesn't already have one, that's OK but being President isn't a private country club.

    September 18, 2012 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  22. rs

    truth hurts-

    I'd rather give my hard-earned income (taxed at a higher rate than Mr. Romney's) to help the poor than as $40 billion "incentives" to foreign-owned big oil. See, I am human, and feel for my fellow Americans- Not like Mr. Romney (Corporations are people my friends). He's one sick puppy!

    September 18, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  23. kayla

    what about the donor who asked robme what he was going to do for them? nobody is mentioning that.

    September 18, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  24. Facts don't Lie

    I wish I had that $200plus grand income that would continue to make me middle class as Romney claims. Maybe he meant to say UPPER MIDDLE CLASS..there is a difference you know.

    September 18, 2012 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  25. Obama's America 2016

    Just more proof democrats can't handle the truth.

    September 18, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
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