A video of Bob Beauprez, the GOP nominee for the Colorado governor’s race, surfaced yesterday that echoes the damning “freeloader” sentiments largely credited with the loss of Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential bid. The video (below), filmed at the Denver Rotary Club in 2010, shows Beauprez making comments that echo those from the video leaked to Mother Jones from a private Romney fundraiser in Florida.
“I see something that frankly doesn’t surprise me, having been on Ways and Means Committee: 47 percent of all Americans pay no federal income tax,” Beauprez says in the video. “I’m guessing that most of you in this room are not in that 47 percent — God bless you — but what that tells me is that we’ve got almost half the population perfectly happy that somebody else is paying the bill, and most of that half is you all.”
Romney used similar rhetoric that implied that nearly half of America is dependent on the government. “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what,” Romney said. “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.”
The Denver Post reports that Colorado Democratic Party Chairman Rick Palacio alerted the newspaper to the clip on YouTube, pointing out the hypocrisy of the statements when compared to the theme of Beauprez’s “Unity Tour,” which features his running mate and former GOP primary opponents.
Ironically, this video has existed since 2010, two years before Romney had the misfortune of being taped at a private fundraiser.
It seems that Romney and Beauprez may share similar outlooks, which makes sense. After all, Romney is endorsing Beauprez this year and, in 2012, Beauprez was often on the road in Colorado stumping for the former Massachusetts governor’s presidential bid. What is it they say about birds of a feather?
Apparently it’s a belief widely held by by conservatives; that nearly 50% of Americans are sitting around doing nothing at all, while living off the government dime. The 47% number is not only insulting to our veterans, senior citizens, and other vulnerable citizens who often struggle to make ends meet; it’s also inacccurate. Americans who pay no taxes at all amount to less than 10 percent of the population, according to The Washington Post, who fact-checked the comments in 2012 after Romney’s comments from the secret fundraiser surfaced.