More video has been leaked, this time about Romney’s thoughts on the Israeli peace process. See our story here.
Mother Jones on Monday released undercover footage of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney candidly addressing donors during a private, off-the-record fundraiser.
“There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it,” the former Massachusetts governor can be heard saying.
“That, that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax,” he continued, adding “so our message of low taxes doesn’t connect.”
“[M]y job is, is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”
The video was shot at a fundraiser in Boca Raton, Fla., held at the home of private equity manager Marc Leder on May 17, Mother Jones revealed late Monday evening.
There’s more. There’s audio of Romney joking about how his election chances would be strengthened were he Latino:
And there’s audio of Romney claiming he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth — and then the video just cuts out:
However, here’s the full quote not included in the original YouTube video but included in the Mother Jones article [emphasis added]:
There is a perception, “Oh, we were born with a silver spoon, he never had to earn anything and so forth.” Frankly, I was born with a silver spoon, which is the greatest gift you can have: which is to get born in America.
As of this writing, it’s still is unclear who shot the video. All that’s known is snippets of it were originally uploaded to YouTube last month by a user named “Anne Onymous.” Mother Jones has supposedly obtained the full, uncut video from this user and they intend to release more in the near future.
After the footage was released, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina issued the following statement:
It’s shocking that a candidate for President of the United States would go behind closed doors and declare to a group of wealthy donors that half the American people view themselves as “victims,” entitled to handouts, and are unwilling to take “personal responsibility” for their lives. It’s hard to serve as president for all Americans when you’ve disdainfully written off half the nation.
Oh, is it now?
At the same time, Romney campaign communications director Gail Gitcho released a counter-statement:
Mitt Romney wants to help all Americans struggling in the Obama economy. As the governor has made clear all year, he is concerned about the growing number of people who are dependent on the federal government, including the record number of people who are on food stamps, nearly one in six Americans in poverty, and the 23 million Americans who are struggling to find work. Mitt Romney’s plan creates 12 million new jobs in four years, grows the economy and moves Americans off of government dependency and into jobs.
UPDATE: Romney called together a last-minute news conference Monday evening to address the video. He claimed his “off the cuff” remarks were not “elegantly stated” but that he stands by the “jist” of the video.
“Well, you know, it’s not elegantly stated, let me put it that way. I’m speaking off-the-cuff in response to a question, and I’m sure I could state it more clearly and in a more effective way than I did in a setting like that,” Romney said.
“And so I’m sure I’ll point that out as time goes on, but we don’t even have the question given in the snippet there, nor the whole response, and I hope the person who has the video will put out the full material,” he added.
“But it’s a message which I’m going to carry and continue to carry, which is, look, the President’s approach is attractive to people who are not paying taxes because, frankly, my discussion about lowering taxes isn’t as attractive to them, and therefore I’m not likely to draw them into my campaign as effectively as those who are in the middle,” Romney continued.
“This is really about the political process of winning the election. Of course, I want to help all Americans, all Americans, have a bright and prosperous future and I’m convinced the president’s approach has not done that, and will not do that,” he added.
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(H/T: BuzzFeed). This story and its headline have been updated.