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MSNBC Anchor Criticizes Romney's Storm Volunteerism: Red Cross Doesn’t Want or Need Your Non-Monetary Donations


A "thinly-veiled" campaign event? UPDATE: A second MSNBC anchor attacks the Romney campaign's disaster relief efforts

Andrea Mitchell (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images for Meet the Press)

MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on Tuesday questioned the sincerity of a “storm relief” event organized by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Ohio, arguing that the Red Cross apparently has no need for donated clothes or canned goods.

“You’ve got the image of Mitt Romney doing what, they say, is not a campaign event in the same space they were going to hold a campaign event. They say they’re making collections for hurricane and storm relief,” the MSNBC anchor said during a Tuesday broadcast of "Mitchell Reports."

“We checked with the Red Cross. The Red Cross said, while they’re always grateful for donations, that this is not what they need or want. They always tell people, 'please donate money, because we have our own packagers, wholesalers’ -- they have their own distribution system," she continued.

Yes, with major weather events like Superstorm Sandy, the Red Cross does put an emphasis on monetary donations. That's probably why, along with tables "piled high with flashlights, batteries, diapers, toothbrushes, mini-deodorants, fleece blankets, cereal, toilet paper and canned goods," the Romney event also featured two large TV screens encouraging supporters to text "REDCROSS" to 90999 and "make a $10 donation."

"And to now get these canned goods from the Romney event in Ohio, and have to first package it -- used clothes, they have to clean, they can't go directly to victims. So, what they need are donations of blood and donations of money," said Mitchell. “It does seem like a thinly veiled, uh, why Ohio? Why choose Ohio for --”

“You, know, right, because the storm is kinda’” the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza chimed in.

“Not in Ohio?” she said, finishing his sentence for him.

Well, actually, if you want to get technical about it:

Yes, the effects of Superstorm Sandy ​have ​been felt in Ohio:

Hundreds of thousands of homes across Northeast Ohio were still without power this morning as high winds and rain from tropical rainstorm Sandy lashed a wide swath of the country, from Florida to Canada and as far west as Chicago.

And just for good measure: “The state of Ohio is opening its emergency operations center after Superstorm Sandy left more than 250,000 people without power.”

Representatives from the Red Cross have not yet responded to TheBlaze’s request for comment regarding Mitchell’s remarks, which you can see below:

UPDATE -- In case you missed it, ​MSNBC's Martin Bashir also felt it was necessary to criticize the Romney campaign's disaster relief efforts:

Note the chyron (the words on the bottom of the screen):

Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

Front page photo courtesy Getty. This story has been updated.

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