Romney’s Medicaid Comments Draw Criticism That He Is ‘Out Of Touch’
During a campaign appearance, GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney said that until he became involved in government services he didn't completely understand the differences between Medicare and Medicaid. Meanwhile, the aggressive ads being run in Iowa by another candidate, Ron Paul, may be making an impact.
Des Moines Register: Democrats Criticize Romney For Sioux City Comments On Medicaid
Democrats quickly criticized former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for saying today in Sioux City that he didn't fully understand what Medicaid was until he got involved in government. ... Ed Coyle, executive director of the Alliance for Retired Americans, said on a teleconference call hosted by the Democratic National Committee that Romney's remarks show "how badly out of touch he is with 99 percent" of Americans (Petroski, 12/16).
The Associated Press: Romney Criticized For Remark About Medicaid
Mitt Romney opened himself up to criticism Friday by saying he didn't understand Medicaid until he started working in government. The Republican presidential candidate later tried to clarify the comment, but Democrats had already pounced, saying his words were further proof that the multimillionaire businessman is out of touch. ... Romney tried later to clarify what he meant, telling reporters traveling with him to South Carolina that he understood the program but didn't quite grasp how it was funded (Hunt, 12/16).
Reuters: Romney Warms Up Tepid South Carolina Campaign
Romney, talking about popular entitlement programs, said until he got into government, "I have to admit I didn't know all the differences" between Medicare, a health insurance program for the elderly, and Medicaid, which helps the poor. The Democratic National Committee, which is on a daily mission to disrupt Romney's campaign, quickly accused the wealthy former venture capitalist of being out of touch with everyday Americans (Holland, 12/16).
Boston Globe: Mitt Romney Admits Early Ignorance About Medicaid Program
Mitt Romney this morning, in an apparent effort to connect with voters by empathizing over how complicated government can seem, instead invited criticism for admitting that he didn't understand a core program until he himself entered government. ... Romney later clarified, saying that he knew about the program, but didn't know about all of the intricacies of it, including exactly how it was funded, until he ran against Senator Edward M. Kennedy in 1994 (Viser, 12/16).
The Associated Press: Paul's Aggressive Ad Campaign May Alter Iowa Race
While other members of the GOP presidential field were slow to spend money to spread their messages, Paul's campaign has been on TV with ads in early voting states since last summer. The spots have addressed topics like abortion rights and the debt ceiling negotiations while nudging rivals Mitt Romney and Rick Perry for being slick or inconsistent. ... The ads hit aspects of Gingrich's record he's been forced to address many times in debates, from his acceptance of $1.6 million from federal mortgage giant Freddie Mac to his support at one time for an individual health insurance mandate President Barack Obama adopted for his signature health care reform law (Fouhy, 12/16).
Boston Globe: Gingrich's Stimulus Support Benefited His Consulting Clients
Newt Gingrich seized the TV airwaves in 2009 to bash President Obama's stimulus package, calling it "entirely a pork-barrel bill’" that would do little to solve the recession. Later, in a Web video, the former House speaker stepped back from his blanket criticism. He explained that he strongly supported spending $27 billion of stimulus funds to encourage doctors and hospitals to create electronic medical records for patients. Left unsaid was that the Gingrich Group, his consulting business in Washington, received large payments from medical technology companies that stand to profit from the federal money (Rowland, 12/16).