Romney: Yes, 'I can'
September 19th, 2012
02:18 PM ET
6 years ago

Romney: Yes, 'I can'

Atlanta (CNN) - Mitt Romney fought back Wednesday after two of the most difficult days of his campaign, and argued Wednesday "I can" do more for the poor and middle class than President Obama.

In a speech to donors in Atlanta the GOP presidential nominee seemed to address concerns he had written off some voters during a May fund-raiser, when he said 47% of voters are dependent on government and unlikely to support his campaign.

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Since that leaked video broke Monday, Romney has stood by his remarks but called them "not elegantly stated."

On Wednesday Romney took a new tack, setting up a comparison between himself and President Obama.

"The question of this campaign is not who cares about the poor and the middle class? I do. He does," Romney said in a fiery address that came as the leaked videos topped headlines for the third day. "The question is who can help the poor and the middle class? I can! He can't!"

The Republican candidate renewed his criticism of the president over another opposition-leaked video, this time of Obama. The 1998 tape shows the then-state senator endorsing "redistribution."

"I know there are some who believe that if you simply take from some and give to others then we'll all be better off. It's known as redistribution. It's never been a characteristic of America," Romney said. "There's a tape that came out just a couple of days ago where the president said yes he believes in redistribution. I don't."

Romney has continued a fund-raising heavy schedule this week, with donor events in California, Utah, Texas and Georgia. He will address voters in a public campaign event in Florida Wednesday evening.

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

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney
soundoff (79 Responses)
  1. kakaraka

    Romney is acting as he never governed by ignoring all his Massachusett disastrous record. No, you can't Mitt. Your record is terrible when you was a governor of MA.

    September 19, 2012 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  2. Dennis Freeman

    There has been redistribution in the past 2-3 decades and it continues – wealth going away from the middle class to the benefit of the rich who don't spend it and too often "stash" it overseas. Most of what's being proposed is designed to slow that down. If that doesn't happen we will without question become and remain a plutocracy. Won't that be elegant? We can change the ending of the Pledge to "...with liberty and justice for those who can afford it."

    September 19, 2012 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    Yes "I" can???? How egotistical can one man be.

    At least President Obama said Yes "We" can.

    19 days to early voting straight dem in by state this time.

    Obama/Biden 2012 (because it is NOT mitt's turn).

    September 19, 2012 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  4. Rudy NYC

    "Yes, I can." Romney claims that he can do more for the poor and middle class. I believe him. I just don't trust his idea of what is best for the poor and middle class. He seems to think cutting food stamps for poor will teach them the meaning of work. He seems to think eliminating common middle class deductions will teach them the meaning of investing. Mitt Romney's idea of shared sacrifice is sharing the sacrificial middle class' wealth. We don't want that.

    September 19, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  5. GI Joe

    Ryan/Romney are grabbing at broken straws - they have definitely reach the point of desperation.

    Rove 101 ain't working this time and it never will again.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    September 19, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  6. Marty, FL

    Another "me, too" moment from Romney that simply lacks credibility. Mitt's policies would be the same as Bush that disproportionately favors th rich.

    Pres. Obama represents policies for middle-class Americans.

    Obama/Biden 2102
    Yes we can!

    September 19, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  7. Donkey Party

    Right-wingers (truth hurts, bb, Myviewis), just stop commenting. Every comment you leave here is more insane, fact-free, and delusional than your last. Go over to the Fox site, they'll love you losers over there. I'm embarrassed for you.

    September 19, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  8. Jan

    If we consider what the President meant years ago when he said he wants to "REDISTRIBUTION OF WEALTH" we of the middle class should all be for that...after all it does not mean literally taking things from the rich and giving them to the poor or middle class...IT MEANS LEVELING THE PLAYING FIELD BY RE-WRITING LAWS (INCLUDING TAX LAWS), IMPOSING FINANCIAL REGULATIONS, ETC....SO THAT MONEY IS MORE FAIRLY DISTRIBUTED. Romney needs to stop making it sound like something is wrong with that...especially when those writing the laws for companies like BAIN AND OTHER WALL STREET COMPANIES...REDISTRIBUTING THE WEALTH TO THEIR FAVOR...HAD ABSOLUTELY NO TROUBLE IN DOING THAT.

    September 19, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    ReaiityBites – wrote:

    A failed community leader vs a successful businessman. The choice is clear..
    Mitt Romney is a salesman, not a statesman. His management skills are limited to a hedge fund, as demonstrated by his poorly managed campaign. Please don't blame Romney's campaign mistakes on his inner circle. It's hard to soar like an eagle when you fly with turkeys. He hand picked the whole bunch of them. That's called bad judgement.

    September 19, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  10. PJ

    Thanks for the laugh!!!!!!!!!

    September 19, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  11. Yonni

    You know what is your problem is Mitt? we are not waiting for you to save us. You say everyone is on it’s own then you come and tell us I can save you by saying "Yes I can". We say no you can't because you lack the intellect of a leader and moral character.

    September 19, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  12. GonzoinHouston

    "Redistribution of wealth" is an obscenity to republicans, even though they practice and encourage it, but let's think for a minute. Neither extreme is good. Socialism doesn't work, and there are plenty of examples. Oligarchy or fascism, whichever you call it, (I call it "robber barons") doesn't work either. Having all the wealth in too few hands is just as unproductive as trying to have exactly the same wealth in everyone's hands. So, somewhere between the extremes is an optimum level for any given economic situation. Socialism is not the answer, but we need some adjustment downward.

    September 19, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    "The question is who can help the poor and the middle class? I can! He can't!"

    I really don't like seeing a candidate in free fall. It reminds me of just how close he could have gotten to the White House, similar to what happened to McCain. Not sad ... just over.

    No Mitt Romney. You can't. You never wanted to. You don't want to. And now you have nothing left but pandering.

    September 19, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  14. kim000

    He doesn't believe in taking from one to give to another? What about his idea to tax middle class so the wealthy can get another tax break on top of the one ordered by George Bush?
    There have been numorous independent studies that show there is no way he can give the tax breaks to the wealthy without raising taxes on the middle class.
    Also it isn't redistributing wealth, as Romney calls it to appeal to his base,it is actually about being fair minded and expecting all to pay their fair share in taxes.

    September 19, 2012 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  15. julie

    of course he can do more for the poor and middle class.............. the middle class will be poor and the poor will be in the streets.............this is WHAT HE WILL DO any numskull that believes or votes for this chump


    September 19, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  16. Lovie

    Mitt... my ol' time Repiblican vote just moved to Obama. We were once a party concerned with the welfare of ALL, now we are the party of exclusion and blame.

    September 19, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  17. anagram_kid

    ReaiityBites wrote – A failed community leader vs a successful businessman. The choice is clear.
    A prime example of why the Peter Principal is so prevalent. Understanding the economics of venture capitalism is not the same as understanding the economy. See the difference? You also need to understand that the primary purpose of a business is to make money and that is not the point of government. I find it simply amazing that there are adults that STILL don’t get that.

    September 19, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |

    Romney must think he is some sort of a Messiah sent here to save us.
    (now where have I heard that before? hmmmm?)

    Silly Romney
    This isn't about you
    This is about us

    September 19, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    "The question is who can help the poor and the middle class?"

    Sorry Mittens, but you're jumping the gun. The FIRST question is "assuming you could, WOULD you?" and you've proven you WOULDN'T EVEN IF YOU COULD. It's all right here: "my job is not to worry about those people."

    September 19, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  20. Sniffit

    And as he tapdances furiously in his clown shoes, the giant hook slowly comes out from behind the stage's curtains.....

    September 19, 2012 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  21. Critical Thinking

    Anyone who truely believes that the current President will turnaround this economy is not thinking correctly. Say all the bad things you want about Romney but he is our ONLY choice if we want to turn this econmy around, the ONLY choice if we want ltrue lower unemployment and the ONLY choice if we want to remain the number country in the world.

    It's time : BO MUST GO !

    September 19, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  22. Maxx

    Wow is he getting desperate. Everyday, it's a new strategy. This is only going to get funnier as he sinks lower and lower in the polls. Any buyer's remorse yet? Still time to run Santorum up there.

    September 19, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  23. Darryl

    Our whole goverment is set up to do exactly what is happening right now. And that is ? when the wealth gets out of control and the country spirowls in poverty the wealth is RE-DISTRIBUTED to a degree. Then in 50 or 75 yrs down the road the cycle returns and repeats itself again. President Obama will be re-elected because he was chosen to bring this country to a new level of financial security and stability. The wealthiest of the wealth who control the world and the world finances, wars ect put events in place for various reasons. Things will be fine and President Obama will leave a legacy like no other persident in History. He is the VERY BEST POTUS !!

    September 19, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  24. Pisces67

    Talk about scrambling. The main issue is how he feels about the 47%. He honestly believes that 47% of Americans, think they are a victim and don't want to take responsibility for their lives. What kind of a President would feel that way about America. He will take care of his elite group and put up with the rest. This was not a gaffe. This was Romney giving his honest perspective to a group just like him where he could speak freely. The rest of us get his bull.

    September 19, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  25. Mike

    Yes, he can......raise our taxes so the top 1% can have their taxes reduced. I can't believe either candidate but I woudl rather dance with the devil I know than the one I don't. If Romney hadn't pandered to the Tea Party I would vote for him but that radical group will destroy America.

    September 19, 2012 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
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