Protests Going on Around Romney Visit to Union League—Right Now
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is in Philly—right now. Normally, I’d joke about how “if you blink, you might miss him” (that always gets the crowd going), but let’s be honest: You are just going to miss him. He, along with Gov. Tom Corbett and Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan are at the Union League raising some funds from wealthy donors likely from the greater Philadelphia Magazine area.
Protesters gathered at 8 a.m. outside the League for the event, of which there will be photos, and a full report later. Hosted by local community organizing group Fight For Philly, the event was billed as a “neighborhood swap,” and as far as protests go, is pretty inventive.
[UPDATE: Check out follow-up post, including photos and interviews here.]
“If you live in South Philly, bring a cheesesteak. If you live in Fishtown, bring a fish. Whatever you feel like represents your community bring it to show the GOP what the neighborhoods, communities, and families of Philly really look like,” they wrote on the invite.
After the fundraising breakfast, the Romney campaign is headed to the Valley Forge Military Academy for a suburban rally.
In light of all this, the Pennsylvania Democratic Party held a teleconference yesterday to remind Pennsylvanians about Mitt Romney’s statements regarding the “47 percent.” Mayor Michael Nutter had previously said of the now infamous video of Romney at a fundraiser, “he’s not ready for prime time.”
Nutter and Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chairman Jim Burn co-hosted the call. Both spoke at length about the aforementioned comments. Burn, who began the call, wondered aloud if Romney would “double down on his comments.” He also noted that many Republican pols and pundits since Romney’s comments had been noting that, in fact, some of it is true—47 percent of Americans do not pay federal income tax. That’s where Nutter came in.
“[Romney] says it isn’t his job to worry about those people,” said Nutter, “well, let’s look at just who those people are.” He went onto note seniors living on fixed incomes, military servicemen and students all make up a part of that half of Americans who do not pay federal income taxes (though, as we’ve noted, often pay Medicare, Social Security and other federal taxes.)
“This 47 percent includes students who are working to build a better future for themselves, who may not be making enough money to pay federal income now, but to say our nation’s college students consider themselves victims … could not be farther from the truth,” he said.
“Mitt Romney is either massively insulting half of Americans or he’s massively out-of-touch with our lives, but that’s not a surprise,” the mayor continued. “Romney hasn’t campaigned here for months and his first trip back to Pennsylvania is … for a private fundraiser.”
While it has been some time since Romney has been in Pennsylvania, Paul Ryan was at the Union League a few weeks back for a fundraiser. The latest polls show Romney slipping in the state to the point where some pundits and analysts believe he may have conceded the state to Obama in the general election. Earlier this week, a Franklin & Marshall poll put Obama up by 11 points (50-39) and Quinnipiac had Obama up 12 (54-12). Conservatives have recently begun arguing that such polls, like the mainstream media and independent fact checkers, have a liberal bias.