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Mitt Romney: “I’m not Concerned about the Very Poor”

Mitt Romney’s empathy and compassion for the poor was on full display once again yesterday in Florida, where the GOP front-runner followed up his decisive primary victory by declaring he doesn’t give a hoot about the most vulnerable Americans.

Appearing on CNN, the gazillionaire former venture capitalist discussed poverty, or more specifically, his lack of concern for the poor.

“You can focus on the very poor,” he said, “that’s not my focus.”

And:

“I’m not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there. If it needs repair, I’ll fix it. I’m not concerned about the very rich. They’re doing just fine. I’m concerned about the very heart of America, the 90-95 percent of Americans who right now are struggling.”

Asked what the poor might think of his comments, Romney added:

“We will hear from the Democrat party the plight of the poor and there’s no question, it’s not good being poor, and we have a safety net to help those that are very poor. We have a very ample safety net and we can talk about whether it needs to be strengthened or whether there are holes in it. But we have food stamps, we have Medicaid, we have housing vouchers, we have programs to help the poor. But the middle-income Americans, they’re the folks that are really struggling right now.”

I don’t know what America Mitt Romney lives in, but where I live, that safety net is so full of holes that the very poor are falling right through it into a bottomless pit of destitution and despair. As I walk the downtown streets of my city, I can’t go a block without running into one or more homeless folks. The lines at soup kitchens and homeless shelters often stretch for half a block or more. Of course, Romney, would probably point to the existence of soup kitchens and homeless shelters as proof of the safety net he touts. But a Republican ought to be able to grasp the concept that more needs to be done to help the very poor so they don’t need to rely on handouts.

But this is Mitt Romney we’re talking about, a man who believes that corporations are people and who once declared that he “likes being able to fire people”.

Once again, very poor choice of words, Mitt.

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