Romney camp in crisis control

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

After months of passionless campaign rhetoric, Americans finally got a glimpse of what Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney looked like without his public mask, and it was not a pretty picture.

The leaked video of Romney speaking at a private fundraiser provided quote after quote of potentially campaign-ending remarks. It was Romney’s most detrimental gaffe yet — which is not a light statement — and called for some first-rate Republican damage control.

But instead, Romney responded with no apology and simply said his statements were “not elegantly stated.”

No kidding.

“There are 47 percent who are with (the president), who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them,” Romney told the room of donors. “My job is not to worry about those people, I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

Even for those who expect the least of Romney, this has to be surprising. The statement is so lacking in the etiquette a presidential nominee should have that it’s almost laughable.  For any person to disregard 47 percent of Americans as hopelessly dependent and expect to become president afterwards is absurd.

Romney has made it pretty clear who he intends to help if he wins the election and who he intends to ignore. It should go without saying that a president needs to have the best interest of all citizens, not just those who voted for him.

If the show stopped there, then perhaps a right-wing revamp wouldn’t be too far-fetched, but it doesn’t.

Romney went on to talk about the Hispanic vote, obviously an important element in the upcoming election. Hispanic voters have been skeptical towards Romney thus far, primarily over his immigration policies, and Romney has made efforts to win over their support. His comments, however, don’t seem to be helping his chances.

“My dad, as you probably know, was the governor of Michigan and was the head of a car company. But he was born in Mexico. And had he been born of Mexican parents, I’d have a better shot of winning this,” he said, as the room laughed. “I mean, I say that jokingly, but it would be helpful to be Latino.”

All jokes aside, it’s belittling to assume that Hispanic voters would suddenly be in support of Romney’s policies if he were Hispanic. Romney continues to treat Hispanic voters differently than other Americans, and his disconnect with one of the most vital demographics in the country is going to cost him in the election. Hispanics’ skepticism towards Romney has nothing to do with ethnicity; it has all to do with policy, just like the rest of voters.

Perhaps, if Romney’s father had been born of Mexican parents, his immigration policies would be a little different. Then he could expect some support from Hispanics. Of course, support from the GOP would be a different story.

Romney is out of touch with America, and there’s more than enough material in the video to prove it. You can’t lead people that you don’t understand. It’s pitiful to see so much of the work Romney put into his faux image be immediately reversed by a YouTube video, but he was bound to be exposed eventually.

He just took 10 steps backwards, and the Romney camp will have to work fast if they want to salvage what’s left of his campaign. Because by the time everyone stops talking about the video, it’ll be time for the debates, and surely then Romney will give us all something new to talk about.

Despite all the bullet holes in Romney’s foot, he’s still standing, but President Barack Obama and the Democrats have to be feeling pretty good right now.

As for the GOP, their chosen nominee has not delivered as well as they expected, and they should be nervous. For seven more weeks, the GOP will have to cross their fingers and watch what seems to be becoming a train wreck, exchanging glances with one another thinking, “Maybe we should have went with Huntsman.”

Lucas Sepulveda is a creative writing senior and may be reached at [email protected].


  • You can’t possibly think Romney doesn’t have the best interests for all Americans because a few sentences didn’t come out polished as a shaft. Romney intends on placing requirements to help those 47 people better help themselves, rather than spoonfeeding them what they think they are entitled to. The man is still by far the best candidate for the presidency.

  • Romney has pinpointed a major problem with America today. The fact that 47% of the population pay no income tax, and may even receive money from the government shows how dependent many of us have become on government welfare.Romney knows that, and he knows that nobody receiving welfare, or paying taxes is going to vote for him, because they want to keep that welfare. In this case i think it is clear who “Romney intends to help”. He intends to help America overall, because having such a high percentage of the population dependent on the federal government, (especially when we’re potentially months away from a debt crisis) is not right.

  • This is such a biased article. Romney’s comments were taken out of context. We need some fair and balanced reporting not a left wing ideologue writing reports not based on facts. What about the video clip of Obama saying he believes in redistribution. Where’s the article on that?

  • @Adam: The 47 percent also includes most seniors — who don’t earn income in the income-tax sense — and the disabled. Neither of these voting blocs are strictly Democratic. Care to try again?

    As for the Obama video — it’s more than 15 years old, and even Eisenhower believed in redistribution. It’s all fizzle.

  • It’s also worth noting that more than 7,000 people who earned over a million dollars in 2011 didn’t pay income tax, for a variety of reasons from resorting to tax havens to losses on investments or financial misfortune.

  • I understand this is an “opinion” piece, but the bias at the Daily Coug is obvious. Just look at yesterday’s front page “man on the street” article where Romney’s statement was edited/presented out of context. It’s no wonder the public’s opinion of the media is in the toilet. Everything Romney said is true, maybe it could have been stated more eloquently, but he didn’t have a teleprompter. Sometimes the truth hurts. Truth like, under Obama:
    Actual unemployment rate is >15% (hope your parents didn’t remodel your bedroom) 23.2 MILLION people! Black/Hispanic rates highest in recorded history.

    Debt to GDP ratio is 115% and forecasted under Obama to significantly rise (Greece is 190% and self destructing).

    Actual debt: >$16 TRILLION, of which >$5 TRILLION was added under this president. Forget about your student loan debt, every man, woman and CHILD owes >$50K, or since you’re soon to be professionals (i.e. taxpayers), you owe >$140K. This doesn’t even include astronomical underfunded entitlements (Medicare, Social Security).

    25% of the GDP goes to the Federal Govt. That means $.25 of every $1 produced (not profit), yet we still overspent $1.2 TRILLION this year. Sorry, taxing the rich 5%, who already pay 60% of all Federal income tax, aint gonna solve it. Not even a drop in the bucket. Once you graduate, who do you think you’ll be working for? It’ll be some business that those “rich” people took a risk with their capital and made happen.

    I won’t even go into the massive, record breaking, increase in food stamps, SSDI, welfare, etc, under Obama.

    Is this a sign of a good economy??? A good job by Obama? A good outlook for your future?

    I used to pity the youth of today, since all of this will severely impact your future more than any other generation in history. Yet if the youth overwhelmingly vote for Obama again, as in 2008, well, you deserve it.

      • Out of all that dismal info I presented, you want to focus on SSDI, really? Ok.

        According to a lib/prog source (so it’s gotta be true, right?), the Huff Post, which used data from a recent CBO report stated:

        the CBO said, “in the aftermath of the recent severe recession, applications for DI benefits reached a historic high, exceeding 2.9 million in calendar year 2010.”

        “In addition to demographic trends, the terrible economy has helped swell the rolls of America’s disabled, from about 7.4 million in 2008 to 8.6 million in 2011, according to the Social Security Administration”

        While yes, the report also stated (historical) increases in SSDI recipients is also attributed to aging workforce and increased participation of women in the workforce, but you can’t deny the above statements. Obama’s economy has resulted in increased SSDI recipients.

        Let’s look at a few shocking numbers. In Aug 2012 there were:
        96K jobs created
        75K “new” recipients of SSDI
        368K people left the labor force (i.e. gave up looking for a job, decided to retire, etc)

        Meaning out of “that” total (yes, I’m being selective), 68% gave up/left, 14% went on the govt SSDI dole, and only 17% actually got a job. You don’t have to be an Econ major to see this is TERRIBLE news.

        The solution is to get someone in the presidents office who knows how to get this economy going again, which will produce more jobs, resulting in more tax dollars, higher GDP, less people dependent on Govt handouts, and hopefully,,,,,,,,, reduce Govt spending to help us get out of debt.

        • Sure, the economy has contributed to it. But to contribute the entirety of the bad economy on Obama (both sides are to blame), and then to imply that this rise in SSDI enrollees is mainly attributable to Obama is disengenous.

          And to the other poster: The Libyan ambassador was not raped.

          • Which president is currently presiding over this horrendous 4 year recovery? What exactly has Obama done (that worked), to improve it? (besides throwing borrowed money at it) If Obama was a CEO of a business, with his record on the economy, he would’ve been fired a long time ago. Enough excuses and finger pointing, time to take responsibility.

            At least you didn’t specifically blame Bush like all the other Obamazombies. But if you do, we can debate that too.

            How would the press have handled our current situation if a Repub was in office? Imagine if a Repub President avoided a question on what the U.S. debt is while on Letterman, or sped off to a Vegas fundraiser while the middle east was on fire and one of our AMBASSADORS was MURDERED on the 11th anniversary of 9/11? (first time since the 70”s) These are big deals, yet the top media stories are about (bashing) Romney. Why is that?

  • I know a lot of students would like to believe in this “crisis”. But there isn’t one.

    Hiding the fact that the rape and murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens was avoidable given the heads up by the Libyan government and telling everyone on Sunday it was an unplanned act, then changing the tune to fit the facts is a crisis.

    Totally avoidable, covered up and now exposed.

  • Seems I can’t reply directly, but @Max: I don’t think Obama has taken the right steps to handle the economy — although the nature of the recession was so drastic I’m not sure either potential ’08 victor could have done it in such a political climate — and I don’t think Bush or Clinton handled it particularly well, either. Add in to that the fact that Congress is pretty dysfunctional and has more influence, arguably, than the POTUS and it becomes a big cluster. And, frankly, I’ve yet to see convincing economic plans from either the Obama or Romney camps.

    As for the media focusing on what Romney said, it’s well worth analyzing. He candidly wrote off a large portion of his constituency and potential electorate in a factually misleading statement to top-tier, highly influential donors. In a campaign that has been characterized by both sides as lackluster and stodgy it’s a pretty incriminating moment of shooting himself in the foot.

    • Read the transcript of what Romney said, and his follow-up comments, and compare that to reality and what the media (incl opinion pieces) are actually reporting.

      Obama controlled 2 of 3 branches of Govt (Executive/Legislative) during his first 2 years and failed. His speeches today are the same thing he’s been saying for the past 4 years:
      1. Tax the (so called) rich/raise taxes: (ain’t gonna solve our problems, will slow recovery) Yes, Obama believes in redistribution of wealth, you’re in denial if you disagree. Maybe the Daily Coug should do a front page “man on the street” article tying this philosophy to UH implementing a “redistribution of GPA” policy and see what students think about it.

      2. More Govt stimulus (that failed last time, unless you’re a Govt. employee or friend of Obama, like an expensive band-aid on a severed main artery)

      3. Green Energy/high speed rail: Yeah that’s working so well, another failure/waste of taxpayer dollars, picking winners/losers.

      And most importantly: “Do we want to go back to the same failed policies that got us into this mess?” What failed policies is Obama talking about? The two most instrumental (failed) policies that caused our current mess were the Community Reinvestment Act (mandating banks loan to high risk borrowers) and the repeal of Glass-Steagall (allowed banks/investment companies to merge). Let’s look at who was instrumental in both of these failed policies:

      Robert Rubin (D): Clinton’s Treasury Sec, ex Goldman Sachs, Later Citigroup
      Larry Summers (D): Clintons Treasury Sec., He did such a good job screwing things up he’s now Obama’s National Econ Council Director.
      Chris Dodd (D),
      Charles Schumer (D),
      Barney Frank (D): my favorite quote in 2003, when he was the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee, “These two entities — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — are not facing any kind of financial crisis… The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.”

      All signed/backed by President Bill Clinton (D)

      Basically, it sounds like young people today want to re-elect failed policies and lies about who’s to blame. That’s just proving one of Ronmeys points (47-49% will vote for Obama no matter what), and bringing it back to my initial comment, YOU DESERVE IT.

        • I’m not hateful.

          I’m just really scared.

          Scared that most people haven’t a clue, and will go to the voting booth on Tuesday, November 6th, making their decision for who will lead our country based on “coolness”.

          Scared that we live in a time when the President of the U.S., the most powerful man in the world, can lie straight to our face on live T.V., and we (especially the media) just go along with it like nothing happened.

          Scared nobody (incl the media) seems to find it disturbing when the Democrat Convention, focusing on women’s issues, has a key note speaker (Bill Clinton) who has been accused of sexual harassment (numerous times), rape, and guilty of infidelity (numerous times), perjury, and subsequently dis-barred and impeached…..

          Scared that the national media, who has a huge influence on the avg person, is so biased that it appears the only objective, fact-finding journalism can be found at foreign media outlets, or even worse,,,,,, The National Enquirer (almost got a Pulitzer).

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