Mitt Romney tone-deaf watch: ‘I’m not concerned about the very poor’

For balance, here is a picture of Mitt Romney hugging a baby.

Time and time again, Mitt Romney has demonstrated an ability to explain reasonable economic policy proposals in language that makes him sound like Ebeneezer Scrooge. Is this a symptom of some tone-deafness on his part, or is it the result of a gaffe-hungry media that pounces on his every move? (Both, we’re sure.)

The former Massachusetts governor’s latest misstep came in a CNN interview following his double-digit win in the Florida GOP primary. Discussing economic policy, Romney said that he was “not concerned about the very poor” in America, as they have an “ample safety net.”

We get what Romney is trying to say: The middle class has gotten squeezed in the past ten years, and Romney — like Barack Obama — will devote significant rhetorical resources attempting to convince voters that he is the candidate truly on the side of the middle class. As Derek Thompson at The Atlantic writes, “Romney’s comment isn’t a gaffe so much as an artless description of his tax policy. He’s more concerned about cutting taxes for middle class investors and businesses than he is for keeping tax rates low on the poorest Americans. ”

But still, “I don’t care about poor people” is really not the string of words that make people excited about voting for a candidate. Someone needs to talk to Mitt Romney about speaking in euphemisms, like other politicians do! If a sentence would fit in the opening of “A Christmas Carol,” don’t say it!


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