Ann Romney: “Mitt Has Stopped Disdaining The Poor”

UPDATE: Buzzfeed relays an interesting development regarding this interview:

The saddest rapid response… The Romney campaign just uploaded a video with the title “Ann Romney to FOX31: Mitt Doesn’t Disdain the Poor.” UPDATE: Apparently the campaign has removed the video from its official account…


FOX 31’s Eli Stokols:

Ann Romney, the wife of GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, spoke exclusively Tuesday with FOX31 Denver about her husband’s controversial comments in a video that surfaced Monday characterizing nearly half of the country as Obama supporters who don’t pay taxes and live off the government.

“I’ve been on, obviously, on the trail a long time with Mitt and if you listen to the whole context of what Mitt talks about, he is talking about what’s happening right now in America and how more and more people are falling into poverty,” Ann Romney told FOX31 Denver.

“He wants to make sure to bring better opportunities for everyone. I know the guy, I know him really well, I know he cares. That’s why he’s running. It’s unfortunate when something gets misinterpreted like this, when it gets taken out of context…”

We’ve said before that we really do view Ann Romney as Mitt Romney’s campaign’s best asset–especially when the time comes, as it has repeatedly this election season, to humanize a candidate who consistently underperforms in the area of likability.

The problem, of course, is that Ann Romney’s defense contradicts what Mitt Romney actually said in the now-infamous “47%” videos. There’s no context to soften the meaning of the words “my job is is not to worry about those people.” You can’t make “I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives” sound compassionate. You can’t change Romney flatly stating that 47% of Americans “believe that they are victims, believe the government has a responsibility to care for them” into a less contemptuous statement.

Bottom line: of course Ann Romney comes out for damage control. Much like the excellent quality lifeboats on the Titanic, she’s the best defense the campaign has left.  

49 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. davebarnesdavebarnes says:

    SALT LAKE CITY-Seeking to limit the fallout from a videotaped speech in which he asserts 47 percent of Americans “pay no taxes” and do not take “personal responsibility and care for their lives,” Mitt Romney hastily called a press conference today to apologize personally to the “150 million starving, filthy beggars [he] might have offended.”

    “I know just how hard it must be to get through a miserable, destitute life that is rife with crying babies whose shrieks consistently disrupt the affluent members of society who actually contribute something to this world,” said the GOP candidate, adding that he wanted to make amends for his recent statements and reach out to what he called the country’s “snaggle-toothed street people” and “hell-spawned savages.” “I know it can be challenging to wake each morning, covered in your own feces and refuse, and get back out there on the streets to beg for spare change and food scraps, always one step from dying right there in an alley.”

  2. parsingreality says:

    The camera/phone appears to be just sitting on a coffee table.  The person who walks by and sometimes blocks the view of Rmoney is OBVIOUSLY one of the 47%.  I’m going to guess that he/she was in on the taping, if not the taper.

    The 53%’ers are so obviously out of touch with ordinary Americans they don’t notice what should have been a huge red flag, the camera.

    Of course, “those people” serving them were invisible, too.  

  3. droll says:

    I watched all 7+ minutes of that drivel and didn’t hear it, then I stuck the phrase into Google and only found this diary. No one said “stopped” in that context at all. And “disdain” was even Eli’s word.

    Have you guys really jumped over the incomplete, half-assed line to just msu?

  4. AristotleAristotle says:

    The full video makes it clear that Mitt’s comments about 47% of Americans were not out of context in the least.

  5. BlueCat says:

    we know that context isn’t a problem because the full video has been released. We’ve heard all the stats but for anyone who may have missed them:

    For what it’s worth, this division of “makers” and “takers” isn’t true. Among the Americans who paid no federal income taxes in 2011, 61 percent paid payroll taxes – which means they have jobs and, when you account for both sides of the payroll tax, they paid 15.3 percent of their income in taxes, which is higher than the 13.9 percent that Romney paid. Another 22 percent were elderly.

    So 83 percent of those not paying federal income taxes are either working and paying payroll taxes or they’re elderly and Romney is promising to protect their benefits because they’ve earned them. The remainder, by and large, aren’t paying federal income or payroll taxes because they’re unemployed. But that’s a small fraction of the country.

    Behind this argument, however, is a very clever policy two-step that’s less about who pays taxes now and more about who is going to pay to reduce the deficit in the coming years. Here’s how it works.

    Part of the reason so many Americans don’t pay federal income taxes is that Republicans have passed a series of very large tax cuts that wiped out the income-tax liability