July 31st, 2012
05:51 AM ET
10 years ago

Romney aide loses cool, curses at press in Poland

Warsaw, Poland (CNN) - The traveling press secretary for Mitt Romney lost his cool and cursed at reporters who attempted to ask questions of the Republican presidential candidate in a public plaza near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Warsaw Tuesday.

After Romney paid his respects to Poland's war dead and shook hands with a small gathering of the nation's military veterans, the GOP contender walked approximately 100 yards away from the memorial as he chatted with Warsaw's mayor.

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As Romney made his way to his vehicle, reporters attempted to shout questions to the candidate. The former Massachusetts governor, who has answered only three questions from his traveling press corps during a week-long overseas trip, ignored the queries. Romney did sit down for multiple interviews during his foreign swing, including with CNN's Piers Morgan and Wolf Blitzer. Romney also spoke with NBC News, CBS News, ABC News and Fox News during his trip.

When members of the press tried to ask Romney about some of the mishaps on his trip, his traveling press secretary Rick Gorka verbally dressed down reporters.

Here's a transcript of the questions and Gorka's response:

CNN: "Governor Romney are you concerned about some of the mishaps of your trip?

NYT: "Governor Romney do you have a statement for the Palestinians?

Washington Post: "What about your gaffes?

NYT: "Governor Romney do you feel that your gaffes have overshadowed your foreign trip?"

CNN: "Governor Romney just a few questions sir, you haven't taken but three questions on this trip from the press!

Gorka: "Show some respect"

NYT: "We haven't had another chance to ask a question..."

Gorka: "Kiss my ass. This is a Holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect."

Moments later, Gorka told Jonathan Martin, a reporter for Politico, to "shove it." About a half-hour later, the aide called reporters to apologize.

Gorka's comments to the media came just hours before Romney's foreign policy speech in Warsaw.

Aides to the GOP candidate say Romney visited Poland to highlight the nation's growing economy and honor its contributions to the war in Afghanistan.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Poland
soundoff (333 Responses)
  1. BobPlanet

    Romney should only read scripts from a teleprompter to sound more intelligent. Like someone else we know.

    July 31, 2012 07:23 am at 7:23 am |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    How on Earth did Rove come to the conclusion that Mittens should be the GOP candidate in 2012, and then shove 'his arrogance, Mittens,' down the throat of the republican party?

    July 31, 2012 07:24 am at 7:24 am |
  3. Tom

    Romney's press secretary was totally unprofessional! He was right in a way, but did not handle the situation like he should have. Makes me think that Romney is hiring people to work for him that really are inexperienced. Doesn't give me the feeling that Romney knows what he is doing!

    July 31, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  4. MrRickinNH

    Should this idiot get elected... expect an "ivory tower Prez"... Mr untouchable! Release you're tax returns Mittens so we can see who U really are!!

    July 31, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  5. New porter

    Gorky is no more mature than his candidate.

    July 31, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  6. freddie nerk

    A melt down! Romney needs to hire some new handlers. His trip has become a debacle. Why meet Walesa now-the guy is retired and of no significance. He should have gone to Turkey or Russia or Germany and addressed a big issue. What a complete fool.

    July 31, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  7. Terry

    A class act all around!! He is 3 for 3 at ticking off someone in every country he has visited And he wants to lead the free world..gimme a break

    July 31, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  8. Bill D.

    These reporters have no class at all.

    July 31, 2012 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  9. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Making his millions off government bailouts, flip flopping, threatening two new wars, lying, promising to give huge tax cuts to the wealthy while driving the national debt up $5 trillion, refusing to release tax records, repealing health care for 50 million uninsured, shredding MA records as governor, shredding $1.2 billion of payouts of taxpayer money during the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics, has to make the baggers, "giddy for Mitty."

    July 31, 2012 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  10. communicator1453

    Low class all the way.

    July 31, 2012 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  11. Nietodarwin

    England STRIKE ONE!!! Israel STRIKE TWO!!!! Romney keeping his stupid mouth shut..... PRICELESS ..(First intelligent thing he's done this trip.)
    He' still at the plate, but behind in the count. (Can't call him OUT for his aide mouthing off)
    This analysis of Romney's trip might not be understood by him, it requires an understanding of baseball. American Standard English requires some understanding of baseball, even people who don't like and don't watch the game know what it means to "get to first base" on a date, or 3 strikes and "You're OUT." Most know what it means to be "in a pickle." Romney certainly knows what it means to be "in a pickle" because of the issues with his taxes, but who knows if HE knows it's derived from baseball.? I really don't know how to phrase this backhanded compliment in terms of Dressage, I'm one of THOSE people he and his wife talk about when they say "You people." The reporters WERE kept away, but I IMAGINE his departure from Poland went like this. "I'd love to thank the people of Poland for their hospitality, now it's time for me to return to the USA and BLITZKRIEG the Democrats."
    (GEEZ I ought to sell THAT one to Leno, Conan, and Letterman.)

    July 31, 2012 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  12. Dilip Samuels

    The only people looking at Romney is his aides

    When OBAMA traveled to Europe before his elections he was a rock star welcomed by Europeans and his peers

    If Romney wants to show how comparisons on foreign policy ....he is being an amateur that he is proving to be

    July 31, 2012 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  13. igotnewsforu2

    Good. I would have said the same thing too. There's no controversy behind Mr. Gorka's repelling the press. CNN just needs a story and is pro-Democrat squakbox and biased.

    July 31, 2012 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  14. sparky

    Do you know how the Nazi's conquered Poland so easily in 1939?

    They drove their Panzers in backwards and acted like they were leaving!

    July 31, 2012 07:34 am at 7:34 am |
  15. AaronT3

    That's funny Willard (Etch-A-Sketch) Romney's aid is telling someone to show some respect.. lol He was a failed Governor, outsourced jobs, hides money in foreign banks, and will not even disclose 15 years of tax returns. I'm all for giving respect where it is due that is why I RESPECT President Obama, but the GOP Republican (Do Nothings) Koch Roach Tea Bagz deserve nothing but contempt at the way they've sabotaged America.

    July 31, 2012 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  16. marksmerk

    Romney and his team prove they are not ready for prime time. Three questions from the press during his entire visits? A leader cannot insulate himself in this manner. And the comment of of "Kiss my ass" at a Polish holy site is unacceptable. They best keep to dressage...

    July 31, 2012 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  17. jesusnagstring

    Just. Like Palin or others on the Right they ignore and belittle the press when it comes to questions that might but them in an unfavorable light and only talk to the Right wing press, Fox news, where they will be asked predetermined softball questions and then afterwards Fox will cheerlead and promote the Republican candidate while demonizing their opponents. Romney won't produce his tax records because they say if they do the left will just ask for more. Oh you mean like Republicans asking repeatedly for Obamas birth certificate. What he produced it? Well we want the long form. What he produced that? Well its s fake lets see his college records, lets question his religion and his religious ties. But to ask Romney to produce his tax records how dare they? Really Gop? Obama 2012...

    July 31, 2012 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
  18. Joey Isotta-Fraschini©™

    It isn't enough to photograph well.
    Ronald Reagan also had that gift, but he could also speak well.

    July 31, 2012 07:37 am at 7:37 am |
  19. Elliot Carlin

    When asked to comment, Joe Biden said "This is no big effin' deal"

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  20. Romney is as dumb as Palin

    He's not ready for prime time and his staff have to protect him from "hard" questions. Now we know why McCain didn't choose him over Palin as his VP running mate. I don't want this guy running my country!

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  21. Dave

    The press was probably being overzealous here, but when you have a candidate who refuses to answer all but the most scripted softball questions, what do you do?

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  22. Ben

    It is frustrating when the media has a clear agenda and is so in the can day after day for Obama. You have to be twice as good and watch as the media takes your comments out of context to create "fumbles" while shoving the other sides gaffs under the carpet (WA WA for Romney and "You didn't make your money" for Obama are prime examples). Losing your cool is ok.

    Listen to the questions. "Gaffs", "missteps"... really important for a president. Meanwhile there are dozen questions they should be asking the current president on real policy and won't.

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  23. iceload9

    It is truly shocking how clumsy this trip has been. I say get him and his "staff" out of there before someone declares war. The only way Mitt is effective is when you have to listen to him or get fired.

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  24. Mark Yelka

    Romney and his aids are not answerable to reporters or the American people. Get over it. There is no law to compel openness. We only get to vote. After that, we're stuck.

    July 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  25. Jim Jonesy

    Nothing says respect like "kiss my a$$" on "holy ground".

    July 31, 2012 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
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