This is Mitt Romney’s statement from this morning’s appearance on CNN:
“I’m in this race because I care about Americans. 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 the America, the 90, 95 percent of Americans who right now are struggling and I’ll continue to take that message across the nation.”
Got that? Think about what this means (and what it says about this poor man’s distorted understanding of our country — “poor” as in “pitiful” that is).
According to the U.S. Census, a tenth of the population lived in households with annual incomes of $11,904 or less in 2010. It seems pretty clear that anyone living in such circumstances would be “very poor.” But for Romney’s view to work, the group of “very poor” would have to have incomes even lower than that. How else to make his 90-95% comment (which would exclude the “poor” and “rich”) work? In other words, a household living on $228.92 per week is not poor according to Romney.
Now consider this: the wealthiest 5% of households had incomes of $180,810 or higher. Let’s give Romney a break and make his numbers “work” by assuming that he thinks the people in this group are “very rich” and “doing fine” — a big assumption for a man as wealthy as Romney.
Think about what this means: According to the most generous interpretation of his statement, it means that according to Romney, millions of households scraping by on $160,000 or $175,000 per year are “struggling.”
In other words: if you’re living on $7,500 per year, Romney is not concerned about you. But if you’re living on $175,000 per year he is.
What more do you need to know to understand where this guy is coming from?