Until Thursday, President Obama and his campaign have been mostly content to sit on the sidelines and watch hidden camera footage of Mitt Romney attacking “47 percent” of Americans roil the Republican’s campaign.
At a Univision forum Thursday, Obama went on offense over the remarks.
The day before at the same forum, Romney unveiled a new damage-control strategy.
“This is a campaign about the 100 percent,” Romney said during his visit with Univision. “My campaign is about the 100 percent of America, and I’m concerned about them.”
Asked to respond which version of Romney he believed was sincere — the man who writes off 47 percent, or the one who believes in 100 percent of the country, Obama suggested Romney hasn’t met enough Americans.
“When you express an attitude that half the country considers itself victims, that somehow they want to be dependent on government, my thinking is maybe you haven’t gotten around a lot,” Obama said.
Obama picked apart the argument that Romney made in the hidden camera footage from his May fundraiser. Though Romney has stood by the comments, he’s said he expressed his point inartfully.
I travel around the country all the time and the American people are the hardest working people there. Their problem is not that they’re not working hard enough or they don’t want to work or they’re being taxed too little or they just want to loaf around and gather government checks. We’ve gone through a challenging time. People want a hand up, not a handout. Are there people who abuse the system? Yes. Both at the bottom and at the top. Because their are whole bunch of millionaires who aren’t paying taxes at all either.
With the first debate looming, Obama’s response gives a peek into how the president is going to play the hidden camera footage when standing face to face with Romney on the debate stage.
Below is Obama’s full response to the 47 percent video.