Will Mitt Romney Back Down Tonight on His Welfare Attacks?

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Anybody want to offer odds on whether Mitt Romney will repeat his dishonest welfare attack during his big prime time speech tonight? If he does, will he go the cowardly route and soften it up so that it’s marginally defensible? Or will he have the guts to dive straight into the gutter and repeat his bald advertising claims that Obama is “dropping work requirements” and “Under Obama’s plan, you wouldn’t have to work and wouldn’t have to train for a job. They just send you your welfare check”?

My prediction: Door #1. He’ll repeat the claims, but in front of a big audience, with the press hanging on his every word, he won’t have the courage to repeat the specific claims he’s already made 6,000 times so far in his TV ads. With the whole nation watching, he’ll pretend that the ads don’t exist and instead offer up something just hazy enough that only the page A12 fact checkers will bother dissecting it. That’s how Mitt usually plays things, after all.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend