Oh good grief. YEAH, MITT ROMNEY, WE KNOW THAT YOU ARE NOT WORRIED ABOUT POOR PEOPLE. Eek! It’s almost crazy how awesome the safety net for poor people is. And how much the Republican party never ever tries to abolish that safety net. None of them are worried about poor people because of how much they trust that those wonderful poor people will be protected by the incredible safety net that they have spent their entire careers protecting, I’m sure. Also, you could have just said that you’re not worried about the very rich, because of how they are so rich, and then moved on to talk about how you’re just worried about regular Americans, and that would have been a lie because you’re definitely worried mostly about the very rich but it at least would have sounded OK, but no, naturally you had to START WITH how you don’t worry about poor people. Can you be President RIGHT NOW? Can you start early? How about today?! (Via GotchaMedia.)

Comments (83)
  1. Oh, man. This guy. He thinks that 95% of Americans are not poor! Holy shit.

    • In his defense, when he looks out his window, all he sees is gold reflected on every surface, so it’s led him to be confused about some things.

    • the fact that it is acceptable for people running for president to just MAKE UP STATISTICS grates me to no end. you should NOT be allowed to just make shit up as a way to justify your bullshit policies. and the fact that they do not get corrected makes me, as a researcher, want to set everyone on fire.

      • For real. Where did journalists get the idea that their role is nothing more than taking dictation?

        • i feel like they are just working under the lazy assumption that the population is informed enough about how this country functions that they can just highlight statements and not have to provide analysis. but, of course, our country is notoriously uninformed and undereducated about public policy issues, and the years of framing everything through personal anecdotes and individual stories has left the very idea of a coherent narrative, especially one on national policies and trends, laughable. everything has been reduced to coded bullshit.

        • R2, I once filled out an application for journalism school, so I’m qualified to field this one. Basically yes, their role is to take dictation. Anything else would look like “bias.” Even if Candidate Jones says, “The average American was a millionaire during the Bush Presidency but is now on food stamps,” the journalist will NOT follow this with a sentence saying, “Actually, the average American made $38,545 then and now makes $38,509; to qualify for food stamps income must not exceed $87.” That would look like an attack on Jones! Lamestream! Lberal! Elite! So what they do is interview Candidate Smith about Jone’s quote. Maybe Smith gets the facts right, and the paper prints Smith’s quote alongside Jones’s.

          But then the average reader sees that and thinks, “Bah, it’s all just he-said, she-said! The truth must lie in the MIDDLE.” And then he votes for Jones because Jones sounds “tougher.”

          Huzzah, free press!

          • Hotspur, I also have filled out some applications for journalism school and I think you’re 100% off here. Journalists should provide factual information when someone is lying through their teeth.

            I understand why people don’t. They’ll lose half their audience because the GOP is so eager to claim facts are “media bias” and it isn’t worth it. But to say their role is dictation is wrong. That’s the role they play now, but any journalist or news organization worth their salt wouldn’t put up with such bullshit.

          • martha, maybe I wasn’t clear — I didn’t mean to say this “dueling quotes” model is what objective journalism should be, I only meant this is how that job is often interpreted. Therefore, ugh.

      • You’re acting like it’s a common occurence, though. Really, only 12% of presidential candidates throughout history have made up statistics.

  2. i want to curbstomp this smug motherfucker.

  3. “There’s a safety net in place to protect the poor … for now

  4. “I am not worried about the very poor with golden voices.” -Mitt Romney.O

  5. You know those freshman psych classes that give out assignments where you have to go out and act strangely in some way in order to see what reactions your behavior provokes? What I’m saying is that Mitt Romney is peforming an experiment, and America is his lab.

  6. i think he clarifies his statement and acquits himself well. this kind of pull-quote over-hyping nonsense just further erodes the level of discourse in today’s politics that is abetted by the media on both sides. so, let’s not jump all over the guy for saying this.

    • Yeah, but…this guy seems to genuinely not grasp how many people are at the bottom of the economic ladder. He really thinks it’s a tiny percentage of Americans, and that’s terrifying.

      • Yeah, he’s wrong, but is he any more inaccurate than the protesters claiming that 99% of the population is economically disadvantaged? It’s hyperbole on both sides.

        • Not really. They’re not saying 99% are poor, but rather highlighting a class/ economic relationship between the very (very) rich and the rest of the country.

        • Whoa, there. The argument isn’t that 99% of the population is disadvantaged. The argument is that 1% of the population has a wildly disproportionate amount of the wealth, and that they are able to hold on to that wealth by gaming the system in their favor.

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          • That was never implied to represent a broad spectrum of economic conditions. Sorry, but I think this is quite wrong. Like any mass movement, it needed a simple conceit, but it was always openly and evidently intended to be inclusive of a wide spectrum of economic conditions as long as you shared the grievance that a portion at the very top of the wealth structure were profiting extravagantly through unfair practices and structural mechanisms.

          • The blog where the 99% slogan came from shows pictures of people with their stories written down, explaining their economic duress. No pictures of any notes saying “I make a slightly above average income and can provide for my family. We’re not rich, nowhere near the 1%, but we’re doing alright here.” And, I mean, I get that. They’re trying to make a point. But that point DOES imply that you are either very rich or very poor.

          • The 1% slogan tagline has to do with the top 1% controlling 50% of the wealth (or was it the same ammount as the bottom 50%, I forget the exact statistic).

            While the ‘top’ of the 99% are less likely to be shown as representing the occupy movement, there is a mix of middle class resentment (they pay their mortgages, but now their house is worse less than what is owed; they still work for a living, so may have to worry about losing those jobs or taking fewer hours or reduced wages; their retirement savings and pension plans have been hurt by malfeasance of a stock market that makes money regardless of the direction the actual stocks go).

            It isn’t just those that are in or near poverty that are upset, it’s also those in the middle who are well off, but not so well off as to be immune to the effects of the economic downturn, and who are at risk of getting the shaft by policies that are being pushed (like privatization of Medicare and Social Security).

            It isn’t about the 1% having the money (although they have TONS of the money). It’s about the 1% having the game rigged in their favor where over time, they are getting a larger chunk of the money.

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          • also the whole point (that mittens has NO CLUE about) is that people above the poverty line are still struggling to make ends meet, living paycheck-to-paycheck, unable to save for their kids’ college, or living with crippling debt – people who work hard (some of them in two or more jobs) just to not need government help (safety net) and they’re still struggling. and compared to mittens, they’re very poor and he’s not concerned about them.

      • I agree. he is even completely out of touch with what he keeps calling “the focus” of his campaign, but I am sick of this – i hate to say it, but “gotcha media,” for lack of a better term. everyday you go on huffington post, the main culprit in all of this, and they trump up pull-quotes designed to make people angry and reactionary. it’s not helping. anything or anybody…in fact, it may be helping Republicans, or conservatives, however you want to classify them, as all it does is get liberals pissed and in a huff of “he-said she-said!!” and less focused on issues and substantive arguments.

        • Explainer guy, you explain things quite precisely. Hyper-partisanship has turned politics into a cultural phenomenon akin to a sporting event, where constituents root for their favorites based on…what exactly? These sound bytes? Knee-jerk “he’s not on my team” reactions?

          • I’m so glad there are more people than just me saying this. It makes me ill thinking that we can’t have reasonable debates about anything. Everything has to be pushed to this absolute emotional extreme. Elections are won by a margin of mere percentages because frankly candidates are very similar, yet no matter who is elected 50% of the nation walks away with the firm belief that the USA is doomed to the toilet because we just elected a raging buffoon Anti-Christ Creationist Baby-killing Billionaire Backscratcher.

            Sorry, I lapsed into my Captain Haddock routine for a moment.

          • The partisan situation is basically that each candidate has a guarantee of about 47% each of the vote (flucuating mostly based on whether they can convince them to be arsed to get out and vote) and they have to fight over the 6% that switches parties on a regular basis.

    • Saying “You didn’t listen to me!” and just repeating himself is hardly clarification.

      • you’re right, but that’s not what he did. he asked her to finish his sentence – in order to make it the thought he was trying to express complete and not just pull half-quotes that make it sound like he said, “I don’t care about the very poor,” when asked about homelessness or what-have-you, but that rather putting a parenthesis on the very top and very bottom, as there are programs in place to help them, emphasizing that the focus of his campaign is on the middle class, a massive chunk of the population that can’t qualify for food stamps, or housing subsidies, or even some student loan/aid that “the very poor” are privy to, which is a fair point to make, albeit insensitive to the needs of many very poor people and ignoring the notion that the success of society can really only be measured by the quality of life of its lowest members.

        • while a lot of what you said was true, the real facts are that the middle class statistically receives more from the state than the very poor, but just from different programs- primarily tax breaks as well as unemployment benefits. and housing subsidies are woefully inadequate for the need- right now, for instance, the waiting list to get into subsidized housing just in new york city has nearly 150,000 families on it. food stamp usage also mostly falls into higher poverty percentiles than lower poverty percentiles, usually because of how difficult it is for extremely needy populations to receive benefits due to the high amount of proof of poverty that has to be assembled, which can be extremely difficult for populations existing in extreme poverty to produce.

          • indeed, more “middle class” people are falling into the category of “very poor” and i think that’s the point he was trying to make, in strengthening their standing. i don’t see many of his proposed policies doing that, but that is the point he is trying to make.

        • I think your overall point is fair, but at the same time, he did say, “I’m not concerned about the very poor,” and he repeated it for good measure. I grant that this is only part of the thought, “I won’t focus on class extremes, but rather the middle class,” but we can safely judge that he does indeed care about the private wealth class, and by also saying he would maybe fix the holes in the safety net if there are any, he demonstrates his disregard for people living in actual poverty. It may be a pull-quote, but it doesn’t need its full context to demonstrate something true about Mitt Romney and I really don’t think it’s a very good example of pull-quotes being used to distort discourse.

          • but you make my point: his words here are being distorted to suit a larger argument that I think could be made better by focusing on how his proposed policies will in fact make the middle class ["the focus of [his] campaign”] worse off than they currently are, and have been for decades.

            all i’m getting at is there are far more important and problematic things to worry about than what one guy says….and especially if he said within a context to make a larger point about what his policies are focused towards doing.

            i am enjoying this discussion. i hope you are as well.

          • Ha, well, I agree it would be easier to talk about this if Romney were actually candid about his platform (in terms of policy over rhetoric). I’m sure the middle class will appreciate his consideration of them while he works to curb re-regulation of the finance industry! (This may be one substantial criticism you’re hinting at, no?)

  7. I would say to come North of The Wall, but we gave the Conservatives a majority, so…

    If you speak French, you can come to Quebec! I’m not always proud of my province, but when we elected the NDP and ratcheted up social spending my dry old heart grew three sizes. “Vive le Quebec Libre!” “Bonhomme de Neige!” “Poutine!”

    • I wish I could say the same for Ontario, but Dalton McGuinty is almost as much as a butthole as Mitt Romney.

      #canadagum

    • What the shit with your fuckwad majority pulling your whole country out of the Kyoto agreement. I am seriously threatening to move to Sweden now.

      • Sorry, I get really really annoyed when oil becomes more important than clean air and water. And your majority seems as backwards as W. or Reagan. Been reading a lot about the tar sands and it’s so frightening.

        • Oil is oil and Papa Harper needs to bring in the big bucks to float the pension as it will be completely depleted by 2050… So I see how he could potentially justify it. But who cares about depleted pensions in 2050 when half the country crumbles into the arctic in 2040, right? Our government is a fucking nightmare and the environment is just the tip of the nightmare-iceburg. The only things he hates more than the environment are poor people, single mothers, and Natives. And as someone raised by a poor, Native single mother I take that much more personally.

          • And let me clarify “majority” by saying that we had 34% voter turnout or something and he only got about 40% of the votes, but we have a shitty vote counting system.

          • As a queer feminist living in Toronto, it is really scary to know that we have a Prime Minister who has such an avowed dislike for all three things.

          • Also, remember when he cut all the funding for the Summerworks festival because it featured a play about Muslims?

            Or when he didn’t give a shit about the kids of Attawapiskat having to live under a tarp?

            Or when he indefinitely shut down the entire Canadian political system because his government faced a vote of no confidence?

            Or when he decided we didn’t need a census?

            Or…fuck it. He’s just a bag of dicks. A right wing, openly homophobic bag of dicks.

      • Don’t google “Canada Omnibus Crime Bill.” You’ll cry. And don’t google “Stephen Harper Northern Gateway foreign radical environmentalists.” You’ll cry more.

        It’s better up here (I assume), but it still sucks pretty hard a lot of the time. Let’s found our own country. Maybe colonize the part of Greenland Denmark isn’t using?

        • I did know about the Omnibus Crime Bill and the move against radical environmentalists, actually. But I googled them and — not kidding — my window dropped the image because apparently my computer doesn’t want to hear my hippie rants.

          Environmentalists as terrorists is the most infuriating thing to me, ever. You should definitely not watch “If A Tree Falls” on Netflix streaming to see what happened to some kids who blew up Hummer dealerships and protest clear-cut logging in the 90s in the Pacific Northwest. Heartbreaking for so many, MANY reasons.

  8. I’ve become convinced that Mitt Romney believes “the very poor” is anyone who ONLY makes 5 figures a year. What a poor and desperate lot we are.

  9. Sheesh. What a butthole.

  10. He’s not concerned about the very poor who have Annette?!?
    This guy thinks Warren Beatty is poor!! (scoffing noises)

  11. Soledad O’Brien’s internal monologue: “Wow, I can’t believe he just said that! I wonder how hard it would be to get him to say it again? … OK, then, not hard at all!”

  12. It doesn’t matter whether Romney personally cares about the poor, because once he’s president and he abolishes all governmental regulatory agencies, everyone will have a good-paying job with 100% employment, and there will be no unfortunate side effects. Unless you’re against having smog reclassified as a vegetable.

    • I’ll be dead in the cold, cold ground before I let big government classify my vegetables.

      • I know this is a joke but the amount of people who do say this crap about Obama and did vote for Reagan — who unsuccessfully tried to pass a regulation classifying ketchup as a vegetable in the 80s — is basically 100 percent (if they were voting age at the time).

        Seriously, fuck Reagan and Bush and Cheney (80s version, though all versions are nightmares) and all those other awful people that put us in this shitstorm. I really do not understand why Americans think of Reagan in any positive way whatsoever. He was the worst.

  13. hahahaha. there’s nothing to be mad about here. duh aficionado, we already know he thinks like this and hate this dude for this. everyone does. this is as good as marky mark claiming he would have stopped 9/11. I’m so happy right now.

  14. This really seems out of character. Making a net to catch poor people in seems more Rick Perry’s style.

    • You mean illegals. Rick Perry uses a net to catch illegals. Only his net has lots of people-sized holes. And it’s invisible. Sometimes. Oh, and some use it to pay for college. Or not. Depending on who you believe. One thing I’m positive of: he’s not sure himself.

      And I love illegals. My parents had no AKC papers themselves.

  15. This makes more sense when you learn who his campaign manager is.

  16. Wait, Romney’s concerned with the 90… 95… 99% of Americans who are struggling? Is that a coded message?

  17. The man makes $58,000 A DAY doing NOTHING. Seriously. We are all poor to him. This is just his way of saying to his party, “I’m just like you! I also don’t give a shit about very poor people!”

  18. At least Mitt is honest when he says he doesn’t care about the poor. He also knows he won’t lose their vote since he’ll never have it.

  19. Geez, Soledad, he said he would fix the HOLES!! What’s not clear about that answer?

  20. Not every rich asshole is an asshole. Just putting that out there. I myself didn’t know Warren Buffett from Jimmy Buffett once upon a time.

    But this rich asshole? Probably an asshole.

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