CNN’s Soledad O’Brien Confronts Rep. Peter King on “Apology Tour” Lies (and Red Hot News Updates)

Good Afternoon!

This freak-out by Peter King under pressure from Soledad O’Brien is must-see TV.  I’m surprised he didn’t have apoplexy trying to defend the imaginary“apology tour” meme originated by Karl Rove. I thought I’d put it on the front page, in case everyone hasn’t seen it yet.

Here’s the transcript, thanks to Think Progress.

O’BRIEN: Never once in that speech, as you know, which I have the speech right here. that was — he never once used the word “apology.” He never once said “I’m sorry.”

KING: Didn’t have to. The logical — any logical reading of that speech or the speech he gave in France where he basically said that the United States can be too aggressive. [...]

O’BRIEN: Everybody keeps talking about this apology tour and apologies from the President. I’m trying to find the words ‘I’m sorry, I apologize’ in any of those speeches. Which I have the text of all those speeches in front of me. None of those speeches at all, if you go to factcheck.org which we check in a lot, they all say the same thing. They fact check this and they say this whole theory of apologies…

KING: I don’t care what fact check says.

O’BRIEN: There are fact checks. You may not care, but they’re a fact checker.

KING: No. Soledad. Any commonsense interpretation of those speeches, the president’s apologizing for the American position. That’s the apology tour. That’s the way it’s interpreted in the Middle East. If I go over and say that the U.S. has violated its principles, that the United States has not shown respect for islam, that’s an apology. How else can it be interpreted?

O’BRIEN: I think plenty of people are interpreting it as a nuanced approach to diplomacy is how some people are interpreting it. So I don’t think that everybody agrees it’s apology.

A couple more news updates:

According to Dave Wiegel, speechwriter Matthew Scully, whose draft of Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech was tossed out by Stuart Stevens and Romney may be the main person behind the “backbiting” that is all over the media today. Wiegel:

My friend and former colleague Tim Noah was the first, I think, to notice that you can’t cross Republican speechwriter Matthew Scully. In 1993, after the George H.W. Bush administration ended, Scully revealed that the president “trusted the wrong people.” In 2007, as the second Bush ediface collapsed, Scully wrote an Atlantic tell-all about the administration’s fumbles. Scully dropped so many dimes on Michael Gerson that the floppy-haired speechwriter could have bought a java chip Frappucino. “At the precise moment when the State of the Union address was being drafted at the White House by John and me,” wrote Scully, “Mike was off pretending to craft the State of the Union address in longhand for the benefit of a reporter.”

In Scullyworld, every Republican has the makings of greatness until he’s undone by bad staffers who — in his one, telling character flaw — he’s unwilling to sack.

David Corn has the leaked videos from that fund-raiser Romney thought was private and off the record!

One of the leaked videos from a Romney fund-raiser that I wrote about on Saturday night, has been posted at HuffPo, along with the news that the source of the videos has turned over the original, unedited version to David Corn of Mother Jones. And what do you know? Corn has already posted his reactions, along with additional quotes from the devastating video.

During a private fundraiser earlier this year, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told a small group of wealthy contributors what he truly thinks of all the voters who support President Barack Obama. He dismissed these Americans as freeloaders who pay no taxes, who don’t assume responsibility for their lives, and who think government should take care of them. Fielding a question from a donor about how he could triumph in November, Romney replied:

There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent 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…These are people who pay no income tax.

Romney went on: “[M]y job is is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

There is much, much more at the link. I wonder how this will go over with working- and middle-class voters when it appears in their local newspapers?

This is an open thread!

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94 Comments on “CNN’s Soledad O’Brien Confronts Rep. Peter King on “Apology Tour” Lies (and Red Hot News Updates)”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    Here’s hoping David Corn will be on Lawrence O’Donnell’s show tonight!

  2. janicen says:

    Implicit in what Romney’s saying is to me, a large part of what is wrong with his campaign and with the Republican party. They want to govern the country so that life is better only for their own people not the 47% for which Romney seems to have so much disdain. They’re just going to take care of the members of their country club and to hell with the rest of the country. That kind of inclusiveness doesn’t win elections.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    TPM: “Devastating.” — Josh Marshall

    It’s rare when the impact of some gaffe or embarrassment or revelation isn’t overstated on first blush. But this strikes me as possibly that rare exception. This tape strikes me as absolutely devastating.

    First, provenance. Our news team is currently reporting the story out. I don’t know the provenance of the tape. It’s apparently been bouncing around on the interwebs before getting published on Mother Jones. But I know David Corn. And he wouldn’t have posted it under his name if he weren’t pretty certain he had the authenticity of the tape nailed. So I’m assuming the tape is legit for the purposes of what I say below.

    This is a fine distillation of the most rancid version of the libertarian conservative worldview. Democrats are moochers and losers who can’t get their act together and think the government owes them food, board, health care and basically whatever else they want. You don’t need to look long to find this version of reality on the web. But this isn’t some right-wing blogger. It’s the Republican candidate for President of the United States.

  4. bostonboomer says:

    Markos Moulitsas ‏@markos
    RT @Scout_Finch: 47% of Mitt’s staff just logged on to LinkedIn to start putting out feelers.

  5. RalphB says:

    This should get him lots of hispanic support, NOT. Base election here we come.

    TPM: Romney Kicks Off Hispanic Outreach Effort With Full-Throated Attack On ‘Amnesty’

    Mitt Romney did not say anything new on immigration in a Monday speech billed by his campaign as an example of a new specifics-oriented push from the campaign. Instead, Romney reasserted stances that Hispanic advocates say have kept him way back in the polls.

    Romney reiterated many of his existing views on immigration to the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Monday. The only real difference following his campaign’s promise to offer more specifics on a raft of issues this week was a harsher tone than he’s used before.

  6. ecocatwoman says:

    I personally & professionally know 10 people besides myself who work for a living, do not receive money/food/health care from the government & who pay taxes who are voting for Obama. If Obama already has 47% in addition to people like us, it shouldn’t be difficult for him to get another 3.1% to take him over the top. WHOO-HOO.

  7. pdgrey says:

    BB, Do I need a clean up on aisle 6 down below?

    • ecocatwoman says:

      This is my favorite part of the transcript:

      Mr Romney also jokes about his father, George Romney, who was born in Mexico to American parents, suggesting that there would be an electoral advantage if he were of Hispanic descent.

      “He was unfortunately born to Americans living in Mexico. He lived there for a number of years. I mean, I say that jokingly, but it would be helpful to be Latino,” he said.

      Yeah, if Mittens was a Mexican-American, he would definitely be the Republican nominee for president – NOT! What percentage of the 1% are Mexican-American?

  8. bostonboomer says:

    Obama campaign: Romney has written of half of America. (Politico)

    “It’s shocking that a candidate for president of the United States would go behind closed doors and declare to a group of wealthy donors that half the American people view themselves as ‘victims,’ entitled to handouts, and are unwilling to take ‘personal responsibility’ for their lives. It’s hard to serve as president for all Americans when you’ve disdainfully written off half the nation,” campaign manager Jim Messina said in a Monday statement.

    • pdgrey says:

      “These are people who pay no income tax.” Mitt Romney’s tax returns were unavailable to comment.
      The best comment.

  9. bostonboomer says:

    A few days ago the source of the secret videos tried to post them at dailykos, and DK users HR’d him/her into oblivion, calling them fake. Other users tried to post them and got hammered too. But David Corn took the trouble to authenticate them and now has a giant viral scoop.

    Markos is now furious! I can’t help but experience a little bit of Schadenfreude.

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/09/17/1132889/-Crap-community-behavior

  10. bostonboomer says:

    Romney campaign finally responds to devastating videos with weak, pathetic non-response:

    “Mitt Romney wants to help all Americans struggling in the Obama economy. As the governor has made clear all year, he is concerned about the growing number of people who are dependent on the federal government, including the record number of people who are on food stamps, nearly one in six Americans in poverty, and the 23 million Americans who are struggling to find work,” Romney spokesperson Gail Gitcho said in a statement. “Mitt Romney’s plan creates 12 million new jobs in four years, grows the economy and moves Americans off of government dependency and into jobs.”

    I’d love to be a fly on the wall at Boston HQ.

    • NW Luna says:

      Oh yeah, he’s really concerned. /s

      Those people are struggling because of what he and the rest of the 1% did!

  11. pdgrey says:

    You know, as much as this exposes Mitt the Twit, the thing I would wish most for this country, is to see the republican party for what it is. I know the media will never see this as important as it is, but please let the 47% GET IT.

  12. RalphB says:

    Nice to see this on memeorandum from CBPP.

    Misconceptions and Realities About Who Pays Taxes

  13. RalphB says:

    No matter what, this has been one Hell of a relaunch of the Romney campaign today!! :-)

  14. pdgrey says:

    I would like to say, how proud I am to be welcomed on this blog, All of the front pager’s, the commenters. Everyone here, you listened to this shit and heard Mitt the Twit.

  15. bostonboomer says:

    Wow! In response to the video released by David Corn today, DNC chair Reince Priebus told CNN:

    “No, I don’t think the candidate’s off message at all.”

    http://thinkprogress.org/election/2012/09/17/863411/romney-stands-by-claim-that-47-of-americans-are-dependent-on-government/

    • RalphB says:

      The GOP and associated wingnuts live inside a continuous feedback loop, so they won’t get the message until Nov 7th.

      • dakinikat says:

        I doubt they will get it even then, they’ll cry voter fraud, just watch them… even if they disenfranchise 11% of minority, elderly, and young voters, they will still think some one stole something from them …

    • pdgrey says:

      First comment is a killer.
      100% of Americans are dependent on government, and we will continue to be so until people like Romney privatize every square inch of the country and there are no more public roads or fire departments or law enforcement or public schools or any of the other things that a government governs.
      Sometimes you wonder if they hear what they are saying.

      • dakinikat says:

        They have no concept of markets or economics. Somethings should be public because they can’t and don’t function–or completely don’t exist–under complete privatization. They believe something that is not only inherently evil but inherent in complete error. They want to throw out everything we have learned in the last 150 years. I’m waiting for them to outlaw antibiotics.

    • dakinikat says:

      Prejudice against Muslims now resembles anti-Catholic prejudice of the past | Doug Saunders | @nytimes http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/18/opinion/catholics-then-muslims-now.html?hp&gwh=82AD9B8A0B02176A083CB4FDB02AA649

  16. bostonboomer says:

    Billionaire Romney supporter/adviser Harold Hamm (the man who bought North Dakota’s oil) complains that his company has to pay 2% of income in taxes.

    http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2012/09/13/843341/romney-hamm-taxes/

  17. Beata says:

    David Corn on Rachel Maddow right now. Great show.

  18. Eric Pleim says:

    I really don’t see anything new in what Romney is saying here, except that it is Romney saying it. Usually this kind of rhetoric is left to the attack dogs. But this has been the right wing mantra all along. It’s nice to have caught him on tape spewing the party hate, but the people who are appalled already are against Romney, and I’m afraid there are a lot of others seeing this who are going “Right on!”.

    Hope I’m wrong.

    • dakinikat says:

      No, the right on crowd is loving it. Fortunately, the test as a small part of the population. The fight is over a few votes in a few swing states and most of those states are very blue collar. This will go over like a lead balloon.

      • surfric says:

        I hope you are right. Yes, the way things are trending at the moment seems to favor Obama in most of the swing states, and I’m pretty confident. It will be very interesting if we can get some polling that shows the effect of this “gaffe” on the blue collar vote, if that’s possible.

    • bostonboomer says:

      It doesn’t matter if the righties like it. What matters is the 47% of Americans Romney is dismissing–which includes military members, senior citizens, and plenty of middle-class people with legal deductions.

      • surfric says:

        Of course you are right about the many perfectly respectable hard working people who in large part comprise this 47%. I just think you are misunderestimating the average American’s capacity for self delusion. They can be unemployed for years, on food stamps and medicaid etc., and still see themselves as the future well to do, and consequently, Republican. It’s always the “other” that is guilty of mooching. Who can forget the clueless folks demanding the government keep their hands off their Medicare?

        I’m just afraid there may be a lot more of this kind of people than you think there are. Then again, I just watched “Here comes Honey boo boo child”.

  19. pdgrey says:

    Nude frolic in tycoon’s pool

    Last Updated: 3:21 AM, August 7, 2011

    Posted: 1:47 AM, August 7, 2011

    It was as if the Playboy Mansion met the East End at a wild party at private-equity titan Marc Leder’s Bridgehampton estate, where guests cavorted nude in the pool and performed sex acts, scantily dressed Russians danced on platforms and men twirled lit torches to a booming techno beat.

    The divorced Sun Capital Partners honcho rented a sprawling beachfront mansion on Surf Side Road for $500,000 for the month of July. Leder’s weekly Friday and Saturday night parties have become the talk of the Hamptons — and he ended them in style last weekend with his wildest bash yet.

    This is the private equity business man’s home Mitt spoke at. Seem a high profile divorce was
    in the mix.
    http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/pulp/2009/07/marc_leder_lisa_divorce_settlement.php
    As long as we are digging, (hell, we are hateful people, he he).