June 16th, 2011
04:11 PM ET
12 years ago

Romney tells actual unemployed people he is also unemployed

(CNN) – Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has more in common with the average voter than it may seem, or so he said during a campaign stop in Tampa, Florida Thursday.

After listening to a group of unemployed Floridians discuss the challenges they face in the job market, the presidential hopeful -and multi-millionaire– cheekily divulged, "I am also unemployed."

Romney's remarks were greeted with laughter from the crowd, and prompted one man to ask the former governor and businessman if he is on the online networking site 'LinkedIn.'

"Yes actually and I'm networking," Romney answered. "I have my sights on a particular job that I'm working for."

But not everyone appreciated Romney's humor.

Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz called the remarks "inappropriate and insensitive to the millions of Americans looking for work," in a statement.

New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley also issued a statement calling Romney's comments "completely unacceptable."

"I am not sure that I can think of anything more out of touch with Granite Staters than 'chuckling' at unemployment as Mitt Romney did today in Florida," Buckley said.

At a later campaign stop in Smyrna, Georgia, however, Romney insisted his humor was aimed only at himself.

"I'll always make light of myself, and self deprecating humor is part of who I am," Romney told reporters.

"I had the privilege of being with a lot of unemployed people today and talking about their concerns. That's why I was there. So I'm in touch. Our president simply doesn't understand that his policies are causing a level of unemployment that is really unparalleled in modern history," he added.

The Republican National Party will nominate their presidential candidate in Tampa next summer.

–CNN's Aaron Cooper and CNN All Platform Journalist John Couwels contributed to this report

Updated 5:28 p.m.

Filed under: 2012 • Florida • Mitt Romney
soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. AW

    What a jerk!

    June 16, 2011 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  2. bill

    Out of touch is blaming unemployment on bank ATM's.

    June 16, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  3. Georgia Girl

    Unlike most of us unemployed Americans we don't have his millions of dollars to waste on a stupid campaign. This guy really thinks he has the nominee sewn up as well as the presidency. And yall call President Obama arrogant.

    June 16, 2011 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
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