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Romney says comments were badly stated but sticks by them

Published on Sep 18, 2012 12:30 PM
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney addresses the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's 33rd annual national convention on Sept 17, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. Mr Romney faced a new campaign storm on Monday after the release of secretly filmed video in which he told rich donors that nearly half of Americans were dependent "victims" who didn't pay taxes. -- PHOTO AFP

COSTA MESA (REUTERS) - United States (US) Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said on Monday that disparaging remarks he made about supporters of President Barack Obama in a secretly filmed video were not well stated but he did not back away from them.

"It's not elegantly stated. Let me put it that way," Mr Romney said at a hastily arranged news conference in California to respond to his latest stumble on the campaign trail.

In the video Mr Romney was shown telling fundraisers he has no way of attracting support from 47 per cent of US voters because they are dependent on government and pay no taxes. The Obama campaign leaped on the video and declared Romney elitist and out of touch with most Americans, who will vote in a presidential election on Nov 6.

"I'm sure I could state it more clearly and in a more effective way than I did in a setting like that," Mr Romney said. However, he did not back away from his comments and said it was a message that he would continue to carry.

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