Mitt Romney calls complaints of income inequality “bitter politics of envy”

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Mitt Romney is striking back at claims that American society is too divided along economic lines.

In his New Hampshire victory speech Tuesday night, Romney took aim at President Obama, calling him a leader who “divides us with bitter politics of envy.”

Appearing on the Today show Wednesday morning, Romney was asked by host Matt Lauer to clarify his remarks. While it seemed to us like Lauer was trying to throw Romney a bone and give him a chance to explain his reasoning with a populist bent, Romney doubled down on his assertions.

Lauer asked Romney whether or not he actually believed that the recent political spotlight on income inequality is merely a result of “envy” on behalf of the “99%.” Romney responded that indeed this is what he believes:

“I think it’s fine to talk about those things in quiet rooms, but the president has made it part of his
campaign rally. Everywhere he goes we hear him talking about
millionaires and billionaires and executives and Wall Street. It’s a
very envy-oriented, attack-oriented approach and I think it will fail.”

The statement comes after increased scrutiny of Romney’s time as CEO of Bain Capital, as his Republican rivals attempted to paint him as corporate raider responsible for scores of layoffs.

According to a Pew Research Center poll, three quarters of Americans think there is too much power in the hands of a few wealthy individuals and corporations.


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