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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Obama Hits Back at Romney on 47 Percent Remark


CORAL GABLES, Fla. â€" President Obama took aim at Mitt Romney for his closed-door observation that 47 percent of Americans are dependent on government handouts, do not pay income taxes, and will inevitably vote for Mr. Obama.

“When you express an attitude that half the country considers itself victims, that somehow they want to be dependent on government,” Mr. Obama said, “my thinking is, maybe you haven't gotten around a lot.”

Speaking at a town-hall meeting here sponsored by the Univision cable network, Mr. Obama said that in his travels around the country, he was convinced that “the American people are the hardest-working people there are. Their problem is not that they're not worki ng hard enough or that they don't want to work, or they're being taxed too little, or that they just want to loaf around and gather government checks.”

“People want a hand up,” Mr. Obama said, “not a handout.”

Mr. Obama's comments were his most extensive, and barbed, response to Mr. Romney's comments, which were videotaped at a Republican fund-raiser in Florida. The president acknowledged that some people abused government largess, but he noted that “there are a bunch of millionaires who aren't paying taxes.”