Forced on the ropes by the release of a secretly recorded video at a fundraiser, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said at a hastily called press conference tonight that his comments about President Obama’s supporters were not “elegantly stated,” but that he stands by them.
- “It’s not elegantly stated, let me put it that way. I’m speaking off the cuff,” Romney said. “… It was really a discussion about political process, about winning an election,” and not about policy.
- Romney said he was attempting to draw a distinction between his vision of an economy that relies on free enterprise and one heavily dependent on government, which he said President Obama favors. “It’s a message I’m going to continue to carry,” he said.
- The liberal magazine Mother Jones reported Monday that at a closed-door fundraiser earlier this year, Romney dismissed the 47 percent of people who support Obama as people who are dependent on government, pay no income tax, and believe they are victims.
- The revelation of the video comes as the Romney campaign is contending with internal strife and news accounts of an operation in such disarray, it squandered valuable opportunities at the Republican National Convention.