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Mother Jones 47 percent video: Mitt Romney does damage control

Mitt Romney says his remarks were not "elegantly stated' at a fundraiser in Boca Raton, Fla. In the secretly shot video released by Mother Jones, Romney says 47 percent of the people will vote for Obama "no matter what ... who believe that they are victims.'

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Real estate magnate Donald Trump, a Romney campaign surrogate, said he thought the former Massachusetts governor should not say he's sorry for his remarks.

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Interviewed on NBC's "Today" show Tuesday, Trump said, "What he said is probably what he thinks. ... He's saying that that's not what he really meant. I'm sure he wishes he hadn't said it."

But Trump said that Romney "won't get the votes of a lot of people he's discussing. ... Do not apologize."

The video was the latest headache for Romney's campaign, which has tried to focus attention on a weak economic recovery and make the case that the Republican's business background would help spur the economy. In recent weeks, it has dealt with the fallout from Clint Eastwood's rambling conversation with a chair at the Republican convention and Romney's omission of the war in Afghanistan or thanks to the troops in his primetime convention speech.

The eruption of violence in Egypt and Libya last week prompted Romney to issue a statement assailing the Obama administration before it was known that an American ambassador and three other U.S. citizens had died in Libya, a move that generated criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike.

A series of polls have shown Obama with an edge nationally and in key battleground states, leading Republicans to implore Romney to give voters more specifics on how he would govern. The new approach aims to improve Romney's standing in the lead-up to the first presidential debate on Oct. 3.

Obama campaign manager Jim Messina quickly issued a fundraising appeal based on the video, telling supporters, "If we don't come through for President Obama right now, this will be the guy making big decisions that affect us and our families every single day."

An Obama adviser said the Democratic campaign might use Romney's comments from the fundraising video in television advertisements. The official wasn't authorized to discuss campaign strategy publicly and requested anonymity.

Romney's campaign released a separate television ad, arguing that the president's policies "are making it harder on women." It cited unemployment and poverty statistics for women in an attempt to close the gender gap that has shown women favoring Obama.

RECOMMENDED: Are you more (or less) liberal than Barack Obama? Take the quiz

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Associated Press writers Steve Peoples and Kasie Hunt contributed to this report.

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Follow Ken Thomas: www.twitter.com/AP_Ken_Thomas

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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