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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Republican Analyst: Romney’s Comment Is What Some Want To Hear

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks to reporters about the secretly taped video from one of his campaign fundraising events in Costa Mesa, Calif., Monday. (AP)

Much is being made today of Mitt Romney’s secretly videotaped comment at a closed-door fundraiser that almost half of Americans don’t pay income tax and are too dependent on government assistance.

There has been widespread negative reaction, but Republican analyst Whit Ayres says that people in his focus groups express similar thoughts about Americans who rely on government handouts.

“The sentiments that Governor Romney expressed in that meeting we hear all the time in focus groups of swing voters and independents,” he told Here & Now‘s Robin Young. “There’s a lot of folks who feel that there are too many Americans who are too dependent on government, so the sentiments he expressed are not out of line with what a great many American voters believe.”

Ayres does acknowlege, however, that Romney’s comments make it more difficult for him to be seen as presidential.

Guest:

  • Whit Ayres, Republican analyst

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  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Did the MSM obsess with Obama’s much more disturbing comments when he referred to Hillary supporters as bitter clingers with their guns and religion?

    Romney simply stated the obvious and he can turn this to his advantage by pointing out that his policies will allow millions to get off of government assistance and into the middle class.  Isn’t that what people really want?
     

    • TimV

      Yes, the media did. Stated the obvious? You mean distorted the facts and wrote off nearly half the US. Not my idea of a prez.

    • http://www.facebook.com/matt.wetzel Matt Wetzel

      But that wasn’t what he pointed out. He was saying that 47% of the country doesn’t want to get off government assistance, because they don’t want to take responsibility for their lives, and that even if he became president they still would want to get services from the government. That’s not the case at all. Sure, there are some people who want to get “free” money and assistance, but most are only on it because they have to be. Not everyone was born into an insanely rich family that could send them to private school and give them all the connections they’ll need to be successful later in life. 

      Whats even more disturbing is that many of these people he’s talking about that are in the 47% that accept government assistance or pay nothing in FEDERAL INCOME tax (very important distinction, since even many of those people pay a higher tax rate than Mitt does on the majority of his income, due to payroll taxes and state income taxes) support this misguided notion. It’s just like the people protesting Obamacare with posters that read “Keep the government out of my Medicare!” The fact is, the states that receive the most Federal Support compared to their Federal Taxes paid are Red States. So no, those people most dependent on the Federal Government for money aren’t all going to vote for Obama, most are going to vote for Romney. He’s insulting his base, who are too thick to realize it.

  • RoninNY

    Whit just barked out an obnoxious reply to your question about whether people will say ‘hey! I’m part of that 47%. Instead of answering that, he said ‘too many benefits are being given out…blah blah” a pre set opinion/talking point. When confronted, he said he just deals with facts, not opinion. Was he the kid who would always blame the dog for that smell?

  • RoninNY

    to “worried’, how does trashing half the country as willing victims and leeches help them? How many of those people are not capable of working even if they had a job? What solutions has he proposed for this? NONE, other than to give more money to already rich people, remove regulations that helps us NOT get screwed and let us hope that they will toss some crumbs off the table for us to fight over.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4CWQM3DQZOEIPSYQOP2UV2VJPI Understandit.ml1.net

      The perception that too many people are dependent on government is rooted in anti-government ideology (often excepting ‘corporate’ welfare). But it’s policy supported by many of those ideologues that has helped wealth pool up rather than “trickle down”, and in just the past several years has left many more people struggling with a heavier cost of living. Maybe for that reason it makes sense that part of the population doesn’t pay ‘federal’ tax, given that the system, with all it’s deductions and loopholes, is still supposed to be graduated according to ability to pay.

  • BenGoshi

     The oh-so-craven Ayers just spun and spun and spun and pwn’d Robin, then. . . news from North Africa and the Middle East.  I just turned off my radio.  Going to ask my local station to drop H&N.

    • Robin

      Well. Couple thoughts. I don’t think I rolled! But we also think it’s important to hear different voices. He laid it out. Some would say good for him, some would say, wow watch him unspool that rope!!

      Anyway, hope we don’t lose you! But we thought it was informative.

      Best
      Robin  

  • TimV

    What a spin job. The sentiment was right even if the facts were wrong? That is the mantra of the Right this campaign. Listen to our spin, not facts. Romneys comments show what many already know – his true feelings about America. That he would be a divider not a unter, that he would pit Americans against each other in the basis of wealth and class. Many commentators have asked this, and I would really like to know – why does Romney want to be president anyway?

  • Psman1975

    Ayers can’t say much that will matter, because even though a lot of people don’t pay income taxes (some of them wealthy Republicans), most people don’t expect the government to support them. It’s a myth and an insult that won’t go down lightly. Oh, and speaking of paying income taxes, why did Romney move so much of his wealth overseas?

  • Z.Dospasos

    My wife and I  both work full-time for non-profits. I work for a public university (less than 30 percent of the annual budget comes from the state…and my wife is a nurse at a not-for-profit hospital. We own a modest house and have two children. Thanks to tax cuts passed by both republicans and democrats, we effectively pay no income tax.  I don’t ask or expect handouts from the government. I pay my state and local taxes and don’t implement any extraordinary measures to avoid my taxes – I take my deductions and pay my bills.

    We are not leeches, and we are not dependent on the government for our healthcare, food or housing.

    My wife and I are part of the 47 percent. We contribute to the public good and are proud of the work we do to help students and the infirm.

  • romanzakharin

    Will somebody please point out that the 47% pay taxes! I dare say many of the 47% who pay no federal income taxes are taxed, by all levels of government, by all means, at a higher rate than Mitt Romney! The distinction between income taxes and all other taxed is largely semantic. The federal income tax is just about the only progressive tax we have so the right wants to conflate all taxes with this one tax. Its propaganda.

  • Jonathon

    He expressed how I’ve felt for years. I come from a penniless background and have never depended on government for my success. It’s time for Americans to stop complaining when somebody expresses the need for self-reliance. Equal rights are rights to be protected from stealing and harm. Most people can’t understand this since they’re trying to take 36% of what is legitimately somebody else’s and want to soften the penalties in the justice system.

  • Rachel

    My husband and I support Obama. We have always paid federal income taxes (probably at a higher rate than Mitt), we have never been on any “dole” and we are not victims. Romney is a true Plutocrat and he cannot run from that.

  • Jon eden

    In a winner take all society, what you get are  relatively few winners and one hell of a lot of losers. So what is the big surprise here?

  • gra_ta

    A little fact checking shows that in 2009, for for instance, 73 million of the 160 million workers made less than $25,000. with deductions that amount of money does not qualify for taxes.  (esp at 20% tax rate). I believe Mitt Romney paid 13% income tax, last year. Mitt and the millionaires/billionaires ought to try a live on the crappy wages they pay those 75million workers, before suggesting those workers are expecting handouts.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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