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What They're Saying: Mitt Romney's Shocking Candor With High Dollar Donors

AP: “Already scrambling to steady a struggling campaign, Republican Mitt Romney confronted a new headache Monday.”

Bloomberg’s Josh Barro: “This is an utter disaster for Romney.”

NY Times’ Paul Krugman: “The idea that half of Americans are just grifters is grotesque. If this is real, it’s very, very ugly.”

Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart: “What the Republican presidential nominee said is reprehensible and unbecoming a man who claims to want to be president of all Americans.”

Slate’s Dave Weigel: “This is Tea Party rhetoric churned into something new and stupid.”

TPM’s Josh Marshall: “ It’s rare when the impact of some gaffe or embarrassment or revelation isn’t overstated on first blush. But this strikes me as possibly that rare exception. This tape strikes me as absolutely devastating.”

Jim Acosta ‏@jimacostacnn
Shorter Romney statement... no apologies.

Kasie Hunt ‏@kasie
Category of Americans who don't pay federal income taxes: U.S. troops serving in combatzones.

Mark Halperin ‏@MarkHalperin
Many of us have seen pols pander to donors in closed events. I've heard my share Rs+Ds. Never anything this damaging however.

@HowardKurtz
Romney on the 47 percent seems a stereotype of an unsympathetic venture capitalist--going to be hard to overcome among non-base voters.

@JohnJHarwood
Ex-GWBush ad-maker McKinnon: Romney fund-raiser tape "potentially crippling"

@JohnJHarwood
Dem pollster Garin on Romney fund-raiser tape: "Reinforces impression he's mistake/prone & arrogant. would be better off if he apologized"

Michael Falcone ‏@michaelpfalcone
Note: The Romney camp's 1st response to the videos comes from comms director Gail Gitcho, not Romney himself

SECRET VIDEO: Romney Tells Millionaire Donors What He REALLY Thinks of Obama Voters
Mother Jones // David Corn
During a private fundraiser earlier this year, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told a small group of wealthy contributors what he truly thinks of all the voters who support President Barack Obama. He dismissed these Americans as freeloaders who pay no taxes, who don't assume responsibility for their lives, and who think government should take care of them.

Devastating
Talking Points Memo // Josh Marshall
This is a Holiday for my folks. So I’ve only been half in touch with the news today. And I’m just getting up to speed on this purported tape of Mitt Romney saying he thinks the 47% of Americans who support Barack Obama are moochers who thinks the government has to take care of them. It’s rare when the impact of some gaffe or embarrassment or revelation isn’t overstated on first blush. But this strikes me as possibly that rare exception. This tape strikes me as absolutely devastating.

Romney: Nearly half 'believe they are victims'
Associated Press // Kasie Hunt and Steve Peoples
Already scrambling to steady a struggling campaign, Republican Mitt Romney confronted a new headache Monday after a video surfaced showing him telling wealthy donors that almost half of all Americans "believe they are victims" entitled to extensive government support and adding that as a candidate for the White House, "my job is not to worry about those people."

Romney Talks Bluntly on Those Dependent on Government
New York Times // Michael D Shear
Mitt Romney described almost half of Americans as “dependent upon government” during a private reception with donors earlier this year and said those voters will likely support President Obama because they believe they are “entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it.” The blunt political and cultural assessment by the Republican presidential candidate offers a rare glimpse into Mr. Romney’s personal views as the campaign enters its final 50 days. Liberals quickly condemned the remarks as insensitive and Mr. Obama’s campaign accused him of having “disdainfully written off half the nation.”

Romney slams Obama backers as dependent on government, tax dodgers
Los Angeles Times // Seema Mehta
Republican nominee Mitt Romney, speaking to donors at a closed-door fundraiser earlier this year, said that supporters ofPresident Obama failed to take personal responsibility for their lives, relied on government for their needs and paid no income tax.

Today, Mitt Romney Lost the Election
Bloomberg // Josh Barro
On the tape, Romney explains that his electoral strategy involves writing off nearly half the country as unmoveable Obama voters. As Romney explains, 47 percent of Americans "believe that they are victims." He laments: "I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives." So what's the upshot? "My job is not to worry about those people," he says. He also notes, describing President Obama's base, "These are people who pay no income tax. Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax."

Romney derides Obama supporters in hidden camera speech
Reuters // Patricia Zengerle
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney dismissed supporters of President BarackObama - almost half of U.S. voters - as people who live off government handouts and do not "care for their lives," in a potentially damaging video. "There are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them," Romney said in a hidden-camera video of his remarks at a private fundraiser earlier this year posted on Monday on the left-wing Mother Jones magazine's website.

Mitt Romney trashes the 47 percent
Washington Post // Jonathan Capehart
Late Monday, Mother Jones released several video clips of a fundraiser where Romney (R-1 percent) tells weatlhy donors exactly what he thinks of those supporting President Obama. In one clip, he contradicts that botched expression of concern for the middle class. In fact, what the Republican presidential nominee said is reprehensible and unbecoming a man who claims to want to be president of all Americans.

Leaked Videos Show Mitt Romney Unscripted
ABC // Amy Bingham and Emily Friedman
Portions of videos that show Republican nominee Mitt Romney at closed-door fundraisers show him using some very different talking points from the ones he tends to use publicly. He is shown the videos sayingthat “no matter what” he does, 47 percent of the population is going to vote for Obama because they are “are dependent upon government.”

Romney to campaign donors: Obama voters "dependent," see selves as "victims"
CBS // Brian Montopoli
Mitt Romney's campaign has responded to video in which the Republican presidential nominee appears to be shown describing the majority of President Obama's supporters as people who are "dependent on government" and "believe that they are victims."

Romney fundraiser videos leaked
Washington Post // Rachel Weiner
Bits and pieces of a private fundraiser held by Mitt Romney have been leaked to Mother Jones magazine, exposing some blunt talk from the Republican nominee on voters, his campaign and American society. In one video, Romney argues that 47 percent of voters support Obama because they are“dependent on government” and that he will “never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

Leaked Fundraiser Video Shows Romney Saying 47% Of Americans Are “Dependent”
BuzzFeed // Andrew Kaczynski
The videos were orginally posted online in brief segments three weeks ago by YouTube user “Anne Onymous.” Video researcher James Carter said he contacted the original uploader who gave the whole length of the fundraiser

Excerpts from leaked Mitt Romney fundraiser videos
Washington Post // Vincent Bzdek
“There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president nomatter what…

The Real Romney
New York Times // Paul Krugman
Oh, my. Mother Jones has what it says is a video of Mitt Romney talking to donors; it sure looks and sounds real. And it reveals a candidate who despises half the country: There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.

Secret Romney fundraiser video: 47 percent backing Obama like government-sponsored stuff
Politico // Maggie Haberman
Another portion of a Mitt Romney fundraiser that was filmed in secrecy has emerged,this time via Mother Jones, filmed at an unstated date and time, although supposedly once the primaries had ended. This one has a snippet of Romney explaining the state of the race, and President Obama's vote share: There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. Thatthat's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.

Romney: I’ll never convince Obama voters to take responsibility for their lives
Washington Post // Greg Sargent
The Huffington Post and Mother Jones both post audio of what may be a blockbuster moment: Mitt Romney telling a private fundraiser that 47 percent of the American people — the voters who can be counted on to vote for Obama — are “dependent on government,” “believe that they are victims,” and think government “has a responsibility to care for them.” “I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives,” Romney says. Mother Jones’ video is here.

Romney: 47 Percent Who Support Obama Want Government Handouts
National Journal // Naureen Khan
At a closed-door fundraiser earlier this year, Mitt Romney dismissed all of President Obama’s supporters as people who are dependent on government, pay no income tax, and believe they are victims.

Romney Claims Obama Voters All Depend On Government Checks In Unearthed Video
Talking Points Memo // Evan McMorris-Santoro
Behind closed doors, Mitt Romney sounds like the leaders of the far-right flank of his party. That’s the central message from a video purportedly taken during a Romney fundraiser earlier this year and posted online by Mother Jones Monday. The Obama campaign called the clip “shocking.” In the clip, which was recorded surreptitiously at a Romney fundraiser that “occurred after Romney had clinched the Republican presidential nomination,” according to Mother Jones, Romney tells a room full of donors that people who voted for President Obama — a full 47 percent of the country — are dependent on the government.

Romney: Obama voters 'believe they are victims'
USA Today // Gregory Korte
WASHINGTON -- Mitt Romney told a group of donors in a secretly taped video that 47% of Americans will vote for President Obama because they are "dependent upon government" and "believe that they are victims." The video was obtained by the magazine Mother Jones, which said it came from a source who shot the video at a campaign fundraiser earlier this year. The magazine obscured all but Romney's head in the video, and did not say when or where it was shot.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus Says Romney Was “On Message” Regarding 47% Comment
BuzzFeed // Dorsey Shaw
The Republican leader doubled down on Mitt Romney's statements that were secretly recorded during a private event.