One day before the second presidential debate, Rush Limbaugh advised Mitt Romney not to apologize for his comments to donors about 47 percent of the voting public, downplaying the remarks as merely "statistical fact." However, the video released by Mother Jones last month shows Romney attacking supporters of President Obama as "dependent on government" and unwilling to "take personal responsibility and care for their lives."
While giving advice to Romney about tomorrow's presidential debate, Limbaugh said Romney "accurately" pointed out that 47 percent of the voting public will support Obama "no matter what." Limbaugh claimed the 47 percent "are your average Democratic voters" but "it doesn't mean [Romney] is not going to represent them." Limbaugh also claimed Obama, not Romney, has "written off a whole class of Americans."
Limbaugh then went on to spin Romney's comments as a "statistical fact" and called his statement a "throwaway comment."
But Romney's remarks were more than just a "statistical fact" about "your average Democratic voter." Romney disparaged Obama supporters overall, describing them as people "who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims." Romney concluded by saying "I'll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives."
Here are Romney's own words, from the secretly taped speech he gave at a private campaign function in May (emphasis added):
ROMNEY: 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.
And so, my job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.
Moreover, it was Romney himself who abandoned the 47 percent comments. During an appearance on Fox News' Hannity the night after the first presidential debate, Romney told Sean Hannity that his "47 percent" comments were "completely wrong." The next day, Limbaugh expressed his displeasure that Romney was walking away from his comments to donors.
It makes sense that Limbaugh is upset with Romney for backing down. Limbaugh had repeatedly tried to cover for Romney's statement in the past. Last month, Limbaugh aired a clip of Obama referring to the Mother Jones video, then claimed that Romney "never talked about" 47 percent of Americans "being victims." Limbaugh also declared Romney's remark a "golden opportunity" and "could be a slam dunk" for conservatism.