EBT Nation has spoken. Its citizens, the ones who will bother to show up to the polls on November 6, have decided to vote themselves more of Mitt Romney’s money. The inhabitants of Section 8ville second the motion.
The Republican nominee may be aghast that so many strangers enjoy so much of his money. Why are the sponging strangers, and the class-war Hessians of the Fourth Estate, so shocked that Romney has written off their votes?
“There are 47% of the people who will vote for the president, no matter what,” an out-of-focus Mitt Romney says on a four-month-old surreptitiously-obtained grainy video. “All right, there are 47% 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.” The presidential candidate tells donors that his job is to convince the unbribed undecideds to cast their ballots for him.
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina found Romney’s comments “shocking.” He shouldn’t have. With more flash, makers-versus-takers rhetoric has been a staple of Republican presidential stump speeches for several generations. Why the feigned outrage over something so pedestrian?
In 1976, Ronald Reagan colorfully invoked a Cadillac-driving Chicago woman receiving food stamps, relying on Medicaid, and collecting more than six-figures in welfare money under her numerous aliases. Buffalo congressman Jack Kemp, a candidate for the 1988 Republican presidential nomination, repeatedly warned that the social safety net had become a hammock. Texas Senator Phil Gramm ran for president eight years later incessantly reminding voters, when he wasn’t invoking the ink-stained fingers of his printer friend Dickey Flatt, that there were more people riding in the wagon than pulling the wagon.
They weren’t wrong, just premature.
A record-high 89 million Americans do not participate in the labor force, with the three percent drop under the Obama administration nudging the rate—63.5 percent—to its lowest level since the Great Depression. People who have given up on work haven’t given up on a paycheck. A record 46 million Americans rely on food stamps, up 44 percent since the president took office. The 8.8 million Americans accepting Social Security disability checks, spiking nearly 1.5 million since inauguration day, is also a record.
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