Partisan field day: Reid, Durbin on Romney remarks
September 19th, 2012
12:09 PM ET
2 years ago

Partisan field day: Reid, Durbin on Romney remarks

(CNN) – Senate Democrats hurried to the floor Wednesday to comment on Mitt Romney's controversial secretly recorded fund-raiser comments, among them Majority Leader Harry Reid who claimed that Romney "only wants to be president of half of the United States."

The video of the Republican nominee at a private, high-dollar fund-raiser in May posted Monday and Tuesday by the liberal news website Mother Jones went viral over Romney's comments claiming that nearly half of the population would automatically vote for President Obama because they are dependent on the government, among other controversial remarks.

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"For months I believed Mitt Romney wanted to be president of all the United States. This week we learned Mitt Romney only wants to be president of half of the United States," said Reid addressing the Senate floor. "If Mitt Romney were president, he wouldn't waste time worrying about the 47% of Americans who he believes are victims, who Romney believes aren't willing to take personal responsibility and those are his words, Madam President, not mine."

Reid also used the video to continue his barrage of attacks on Romney for not releasing more years of tax returns suggesting again that Romney had paid no taxes during some years.

"For all we know, Mitt Romney could be one of those who has paid no federal income tax," said Reid.

Majority Whip Sen. Dick Durbin also commented on the video ticking off several of Romney's previous gaffes this election cycle.

"It is no surprise when you look back to those other unguarded moments in things that he said in the course of the campaign," said Durbin. "We remember the highlights: 'Corporations are people my friend,' he said. 'I like being able to fire people,' he said. 'I am not concerned about the very poor,' Romney said. 'I am also unemployed,' Romney said."

Durbin continued: "'Ann drives a couple Cadillacs,' Romney said. 'Ten thousand bucks, ten thousand dollar bet,' he said. 'I have some great friends that are NASCAR team owners,' he said."

CNN's Dana Davidsen contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2012 • Dick Durbin • Harry Reid • Senate Democrats
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. HOLY TIGHTY WHITIES WILLARD

    Willard is a living, breathing, gaffe machine.

    September 19, 2012 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  2. Fred in NJ

    I am anxiously awaiting the debates. That will absolutely determine if President Obama runs away with it or if Governor Romney can overtake him.

    September 19, 2012 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  3. West Coast

    "Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country." Inspiring words spoken by John F Kennedy, a Democrat in 1961.

    Obama would never says these words to liberals today. They would be insulted. The changes in the party over the past 50 years is astonishing and sad.

    September 19, 2012 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. Lynda/Minnesota

    I don't know, GOPers. I don't really think the Mitt Romney "Forty-seven percent of you people disgust me" message is a winning message. We'll see how it all plays out come November.

    September 19, 2012 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  5. Rudy NYC

    Mitt Romney defined what "severely conservative" actually means. Now it makes sense. He also showed us that his world is one big exclusion zone.

    September 19, 2012 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  6. Name w.bullock

    Obama was fault that he was runied it end of story at middle east and countries but please cnn need stop blame to mitten what about leaking but how presdient obama was leak at white house

    September 19, 2012 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  7. Rudy NYC

    The Romney campaign has been a case study in management disaster. What has happened to the highly touted Mitt Romney management skills? I know. Maybe they never really existed. It seems Romney's management skills may be limited to an investment portfolio.

    September 19, 2012 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  8. Surfer George

    "Corporations are people my friend"
    "I like being able to fire people"
    I am not concerned about the very poor"
    am also unemployed"

    NOW THIS? – All statements seem consistent with the Republican called VULTURE CAPITALIST by Republicans.

    September 19, 2012 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  9. Gurgyl

    Not half–47% presidency. No twist facts with public...

    September 19, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  10. Thomas

    ""Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country." Inspiring words spoken by John F Kennedy, a Democrat in 1961."

    Good words by a good, non-recession era, President.

    September 19, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  11. Flagship, NC

    I want to know what George Bush thinks of this!

    September 19, 2012 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  12. NVa Native

    Of course it's huge news ~ a repub being honest on video is huge news. Sorry for your loss Mittens.

    September 19, 2012 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  13. linda

    West Coast---Not half as sad as what has happened to the GOP......"our way or the highway".....not working and doing the job the people of their state sent them to Washington to do......making their campaign slogan " Making Obama a one term President.. not taking part of the blame of this poor economy that Bush got us into......creating 2 Wars without a way to pay for them and sinking our economy......I could go on and on.....but I think you get the point....what you can do for your country.....ask that to Romney and why he dodged the draft during Vietnam and ending up in France.....he has 5 health boys why aren't they doing something for their country......Oh I forgot, Republicans want to make War but want the poor, and middle class to fight it for them......

    September 19, 2012 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  14. NVa Native

    All the tee-heads are freaking out – you can tell by all the "honesty" they are spewing. In the real world it's called hatred and bigotry – but in the GOP buble it's called "honesty". hahahhaha

    September 19, 2012 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  15. Ann

    FACT: 47% of Americans don't pay federal taxes. Do you get it? that's what Romney said. Since many of these people benefit of government support, it is likely they will vote Obama. Don't you think it's accurate? Romney never said he will not care about them as president, he just doesn't count on them to vote for him.

    September 19, 2012 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  16. Sueb

    Mitt Romney's parents were part of the 47%!!!!
    You can't make this stuff up....on The Daily show last night, Jon Stewart played a clip of Mitt Romney's mother talking about the early days when she and George were on welfare relief....the government was there for them and they got on their feet....I don't think inflicting Mitt on us was a very nice way of thanking us though!!!!

    September 19, 2012 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  17. LD

    Mitts mother and father were on welfare when they returned to the U.S from Mexico. That makes his own parents part of the 47%.

    September 19, 2012 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  18. Rich Parks

    Gaffe-a-thon, Willard Romney is his own built-in, ivory tower, SUPER-BIDEN gaffe factory, Why does he even need the potential VP Paul Ryan? Romney puts Biden's meager efforts to shame. Willard is a true Gaffe Master.

    September 19, 2012 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  19. Q

    Well there goes the swing back to the middle strategy! Romney thought that he could use the republican base and get through the primaries, then dump them and tact back to the center to appeal to independent voters to win the White House...NOT!

    September 19, 2012 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  20. NVa Native

    Dubbers ran his Presidency for only the benefit of people who believed as he did. The new thing with Romoney is now there is an opportunity for many of those who consider themselves Repubs to realize through this video of blatant honesty that the Romoney & the GOP cares nothing for them or their families.
    The masters of the GOP care only for what follows their mantra of "I got mine, screw you".

    September 19, 2012 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  21. The hidden agenda of the Left

    So they can take the time to campaign for Obama, but can't seem to find time for presenting a budget. Say what you want about the House Republicans, but at least they presented a budget. The Dems and their welfare voters will be the ruin of this country. Oh, before you MSNBC-brainwashed Libs spew about red states getting more federal aid than blue states – that includes agricultural subsidies. So, next time you stuff your fat Lib mouths, think about how much higher your grocery bill would be if those were cut.

    September 19, 2012 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  22. LD

    @linda. Romney said he didn't go to vietnam because he had plans for his life. Now that's a slap in the face to the tens of thousands of men and women who fought, died, were maimed and had their lives destroyed. Using Mitt's logic those people had no plans for their lives. Probably part of the 47% he loathes.

    September 19, 2012 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  23. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    The way Mittens is sashaying around the stage, it looks like his wealthy donors gave him a wedgie.

    September 19, 2012 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  24. Rudy NYC

    Ann – wrote:

    FACT: 47% of Americans don't pay federal taxes. Do you get it? that's what Romney said. Since many of these people benefit of government support, it is likely they will vote Obama. Don't you think it's accurate? Romney never said he will not care about them as president, he just doesn't count on them to vote for him.
    -----------------
    FACT: Mitt Romney is also on record saying that he was not concerned about the poor because they had the safety social nets.

    Ann, you can try to clean it up any way you like. I doesn't matter. Most people, including liberals, all agree that Romney spoke truthfully, but he did it from a certain point of view. It is that perspective that Romney in so much trouble.

    September 19, 2012 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  25. HOLY TIGHTY WHITIES WILLARD

    Ann
    FACT: 47% of Americans don't pay federal taxes.
    -----------------------------
    What do you call payroll tax Ann? Your last name wouldn't happen to be Romney will it?

    September 19, 2012 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
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