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How Out Of Touch Are Romney & Obama?

This, from the Christian Science Monitor:

In a recent speech, President Barack Obama referred to the “middle class” 14 times, defining it as a family that makes up to $250,000 a year. …

Referring to the election as a “make-or-break” moment for the middle class, Obama used the term repeatedly in his July 9 speech calling for an extension of “middle-class” tax breaks for families making less than $250,000, or $200,000 for individuals — basically everyone but the top 2 percent. He mentioned the phrase seven times at a fundraiser Tuesday in San Antonio.

This, from a new interview with Mitt Romney:

Mitt Romney is promising to reduce taxes on middle-income Americans.

But how does he define ‘‘middle-income”? The Republican presidential nominee defined it Friday as income of $200,000 to $250,000 a year and less.

The definition of ‘‘middle income’’ or the ‘‘middle class’’ is politically charged as Romney and President Barack Obama fight to win over working-class voters. Romney would be among the wealthiest presidents, if elected, and Democrats have repeatedly painted him as out of touch with average people.

Obama also has set his definition for ‘‘middle class’’ as families with income of up to $250,000 a year.

Romney’s comments came an interview broadcast Friday on ABC’s ‘‘Good Morning America.’’

‘‘No one can say my plan is going to raise taxes on middle-income people, because principle number one is (to) keep the burden down on middle-income taxpayers,’’ Romney told host George Stephanopoulos.

‘‘Is $100,000 middle income?’’ Stephanopoulos asked.

‘‘No, middle income is $200,000 to $250,000 and less,’’ Romney responded.

His campaign later clarified that Romney was referencing household income, not individual income.

The Census Bureau reported this week that the median household income — the midpoint for the nation — is just over $50,000.

 

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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