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Mitt Romney Calls Corporations 'People': Do You Think Big Business Helps Us?

Politics 2011/08/12 14:46:49
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Republican presidential candidates, they say the darndest things.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, the current GOP frontrunner (until this weekend anyway, when Texas Governor Rick Perry officially gets in the ring), served up a doozy this week at the Iowa State Fair.

It's the kind of "read my lips...no new taxes" statement that likely had President Obama and his campaign staff falling over in their chairs.

Facing an unusually combative audience, which some speculated was filled with either very liberal Republican hecklers or some Democratic plants, Romney said "We have to make sure that the promises we make - and Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare - are promises we can keep. And there are various ways of doing that. One is, we could raise taxes on people."

Fair enough. Then an audience member shouted "corporations!"

And Romney responded, "Corporations are people, my friend. We can raise taxes on," at which point the heckler yelled "No, they're not!"

Romney would not be deterred, adding, "Of course they are. Everything corporations earn also goes to people." That elicited some chuckles from the crowd, miffing Romney, who asked, "Where do you think it goes?" Well, into their pockets, his rival responded.

"Whose pockets? Whose pockets? People's pockets! Human beings, my friend. So number one, you can raise taxes. That's not the approach that I would take," Romney said confidently.



As Gawker pointed out, technically, Romney is right, corporations are legally organized as "people," with the same legal protections as individuals. But, as the site argued, "Mitt Romney doesn't need to be giving corporations big bear hugs at the Iowa State Fair right now while lecturing the simple folk about America's need to 'reform' Medicare and Social Security."

At least one rival, former Obama appointee Jon Huntsman, openly mocked Romney, tweeting, "Was American Pad & Paper Company a person/friend?," referring to one of the many corporations Romney made a lot of money off of ($100 million in fact) while working at Bain Capital while slowly letting it wither.
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Top Opinion

  • Daryl 2011/08/12 15:54:58
    Yes
    Daryl
    +75
    Yes, I left my life as a government worker and I have worked for corporations ever since...I even started one myself.

    My life is much better since I stopped working for the government.

    My pay is higher.

    My benefits are better.

    My quality of life is higher.

    Thank you corporations including the corporations that created the platforms so you can read this message.

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  • Freedom4 2012/01/11 02:27:41
    Yes
    Freedom4
    Of course they do. Only an idiiot with no comprehension of how the economy works would say otherwise.
  • Kaleokualoha 2011/09/28 21:47:25
    Yes
    Kaleokualoha
    Corporations ARE recognized as "people" under certain circumstances in the United States:

    [QUOTE]
    Corporate personhood refers to the question of which subset, if any, of rights afforded under the law to natural persons should also be afforded to corporations as legal persons.

    In the United States, corporations were recognized as having rights to contract, and to have those contracts honored the same as contracts entered into by natural persons, in Dartmouth College v. Woodward, decided in 1819. In the 1886 case Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad, 118 U.S. 394, the Supreme Court recognized that corporations were recognized as persons for purposes of the Fourteenth Amendment.[1][2] -
    [END QUOTE http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... ]

    Whether or not they SHOULD be recognized as people is another question.
  • Marlow ~ Let There Be Light 2011/09/04 02:18:12
    Yes
    Marlow ~ Let There Be Light
    +1
    They provide services and products YOU want and buy. They don't exist in a vacuum. They are supported by consumers. Anyone who can't see that is a big dope. And yes, that means the whole Democratic Party that usesw that assinine line. On top of that, corporations provide tones of jobs. Go around and ask who people work for.

    This question provesd Democrats are dumb!

    corporations provide tones jobs people work provesd democrats dumb liberal stupid
  • Live Free Or Die 2011/08/30 17:10:14
    Yes
    Live Free Or Die
    +1
    Corporate owners and CEOs are people too, yes. They provide goods, services and jobs. But they can lay people off too, especially when they merge or downsize, often times at a personal profit to them, not the workers.
  • Charu ∞ijm♥∞ 2011/08/25 21:52:16
    No
    Charu ∞ijm♥∞
    +1
    yeah....right...like GE. Oh wait....it does go to the people....of CHINA
  • DavidK Charu ∞... 2011/10/04 04:08:05
    DavidK
    +1
    thank Obummer for that!
  • Charu ∞... DavidK 2011/10/04 04:12:50
    Charu ∞ijm♥∞
    +1
    ABSOLUTELY!!!!
  • RageFury 2011/08/22 15:37:34
    Yes
    RageFury
    +1
    In a climate where people must have money to survive Big Business provides jobs and a means for the "average Joe" to obtain money.
    If you want to get rid of Big Business you must first eliminate the concept of "Money"...
  • JGunny16 2011/08/20 03:36:51
    Yes
    JGunny16
    +1
    I believe that big business does help in some ways like in the car industry, if we don't rely on the American companies that make the cars on US soil and supply US citizens jobs then we would just be outsourcing our car industries which pay taxes even to export our cars to other counties that like a certain brand. In other ways big business hurts us too, like the oil companies who get big tax cuts that shouldn't happen.
  • jdemme JGunny16 2011/08/20 03:41:45
    jdemme
    In that aspect, you're correct. If we stop outsourcing then we'll create American jobs. However, there needs to be a tariff to cancel out any benefits from outsourcing.
  • Sam 2011/08/19 09:31:19
    Yes
    Sam
    Viagra wasn't invented by some dude in his garage after all ; ).
  • cassandrabadie 2011/08/19 07:23:40
    No
    cassandrabadie
    no
  • DavidK cassand... 2011/10/04 04:08:20
    DavidK
    no what?!?!?
  • AnnForTruth 2011/08/18 10:55:38 (edited)
  • DavidK AnnForT... 2011/10/04 04:08:35
    DavidK
    what are they then?
  • AnnForT... DavidK 2011/10/04 05:05:24
    AnnForTruth
    Legally corporations are considered people. Adolph & Adolph (2008) define corporation as being an "association of people created by law into an entity." A corporation is large so rather than sue each individual we sue the corporation and pierce the corporate veil if necessary. I just provided a simple definition but it's far more complex.

    Corporations have a judicial duty to their shareholders and stockholders, to be profitable and not so much to commoners like us. But they should make us happy because we determine their bottom line and so forth. I'm not going to go any further. Hopefully you get the gist.
  • DavidK AnnForT... 2011/10/04 13:59:52
    DavidK
    Being a Corporation vs a proprietorship for over 35 years has taught me the difference. I've been incorporated for decades. I'm sure I get the jest of it.........
  • Pablo 2011/08/18 02:06:27
    Yes
    Pablo
    +1
    So, who provides jobs, manufacturing, and service items to the general public ? The government ? Corporations are a 'cover name' for a group of individuals who own, run, manage, produce, distribute, et.al. goods and services. I would think rather focus on the main issue, and thats O'blah blah and his hope and change. Had enough ?
    Pablo
  • jdemme Pablo 2011/08/18 02:22:25 (edited)
    jdemme
    +3
    So why are they cutting jobs and lowering wages? Oh right, because they want more money. I dislike what Obama's done because he's listened to the Tea Party and extended the bush tax cuts, and raised the debt ceiling without raising taxes and cutting spending, or at least flatten the tax code by ending subsidies. He's bad because he listened to you.
  • Pablo jdemme 2011/08/19 07:53:27
    Pablo
    Where do you get your reasoning from ? Thank God not many of you Obama supporters will not have him around in 2013.....he will lose and that is good. And take that reasoning with you to the garbage.
    Pablo
  • jdemme Pablo 2011/08/20 03:34:53 (edited)
    jdemme
    Why don't you look at what you believe in and look at what Obama's implemented economically. It's all your ideas. Cut taxes, subsidize companies, ignore the problem, let the wheel turn. History has proven that wrong. The only thing that he passed was a pro-business stimulus to bail out banks so we didn't have another great depression. If you're going to attack the presidents economic policy, you're attacking your own side.
  • RageFury jdemme 2011/08/22 15:45:32 (edited)
    RageFury
    +2
    Actually the Tea party wanted real spending cuts and a balanced budget. We did not get either. Spending cuts to "projected" spending are not cuts because the Deficit and the spending continue to increase, in this case $8 trillion over 10 years instead of $10 trillion. Naturally projections can change it will likely exceed $8 trillion given Obama's spending habits.

    The Tea party also wants smaller Government and a return to the Constitution, yet two more things we don't have.

    Obama did maintain the Bush tax Tax cuts which predate the Tea Party and in effect retained the current tax levels and were not cuts at all. They were cuts when they were first implemented and now they just maintain the rates...

    So in essence none of the Tea Party's ideas have been implemented. Not a single one.
  • jdemme RageFury 2011/08/22 18:41:30
    jdemme
    You got your "don't tax the rich" out of it. And the constitution is meant to be interpreted. If we didn't interpret the constitution, the Louisiana purchase would never have happened. "Returning to the Constitution" is just an excuse. We need to both cut spending and increase revenue, or in non political terms, get rid of programs and raise taxes.
  • RageFury jdemme 2011/08/22 18:53:50
    RageFury
    +2
    We got the Tax rates maintained for all. The "bush tax cuts" were for all and they maintained the tax rate we all have had for several years. Not swiping more of the People's money should be a goal for all.

    ""Returning to the Constitution" is just an excuse."
    Incorrect. when you have the Patriot Act and violations of Bill of Rights just about across the board this becomes a major issue. Especially where the growth and meddling by Government is concerned. Higher taxes and higher deficit spending allows Government to grow out of control. This is a big ticket item.

    You think we need to however cutting spending reduces the deficit and does not swipe more of the People's money.
    Very doable, Google:
    taking a chainsaw to the budget
    John Stossel has a nice solution that achieves the following:
    Total Cut: $1,882,619,000,000
    Current deficit: $1,645,000,000,000
    Surplus Achieved: $237,619,000,000

    Of course there is room to tweak it just a tad, but to suggest we must raise taxes is simply absurd.
  • jdemme RageFury 2011/08/22 18:57:05 (edited)
    jdemme
    And what programs would you be cutting? Medicare? Medicaid? Social Security? The FDIC? The EPA?

    I understand about trimming Medicare, Medicaid, and SS, but I like my water clean and my air unpolluted thank you. I also like that if my bank goes under tat I am guaranteed some money.

    Also, the Patriot Act is ridiculous, I agree. Not my administration, though.
  • RageFury jdemme 2011/08/22 19:15:38
    RageFury
    +1
    "Also, the Patriot Act is ridiculous, I agree. Not my administration, though"
    Agree, however it passed during Bush and extended during Obama. It belongs to Both Administrations.

    Seriously though, Google:
    taking a chainsaw to the budget

    John Stossel's solution achieves the following:
    Total Cut: $1,882,619,000,000
    Current deficit: $1,645,000,000,000
    Surplus Achieved: $237,619,000,000

    Keep in mind the above provides $237 billion surplus where you can tweak it.
    But increase taxes? No, not needed, at most close a few loopholes or all of them for about $800 billion and lower them a bit giving back say $400 billion. That gives you nearly $640 billion to reallocate and pay off the debt with.
    Nothing more is justified.
  • jdemme RageFury 2011/08/22 20:20:15
    jdemme
    +2
    You're right. I'm also afraid of the power that's given to the president. The ability that they can and will listen in on pmy phone calls are scary.

    Maybe you misunderstand me on taxes. I don't agree with burdening the middle class any more than they're already burdened with. I support having the rich pay their fair share, which they're not.

    Also, I googled it. It cuts a lot of useless things, but stops supporting a lot of necessary things. However, the necessary things that I wouldn't touch only adds up to 342 billion. The rest can be trimmed or cut.
  • RageFury jdemme 2011/08/22 20:55:34
    RageFury
    +1
    Scary indeed. We need more liberty minded people in Congress and one as president.

    I am not sure you are aware just how much of the taxes we get come from the rich.

    The bottom 50% pays 2.7% and the top 25% pays 86.34%, I think this is more than fair. In fact I might even go so far as to say it is unfair to the "Rich" already.
    http://www.taxfoundation.org/...

    At any rate a cutting of the loopholes would be a requirement for your modification and would still leave a healthy surplus to work with. You might actually have a winner there.
  • jdemme RageFury 2011/08/22 21:35:41
    jdemme
    +1
    The taxes aren't being paid by people, it's a business tax that they're getting. I'm well aware that businesses get taxed 35%. There's no doubt that the top 25% pay more, that's what the percentage is for. People pay a percentage of tax, not a fixed amount. However, as pointed out by Warren Buffet, the top 1% only pay 15% of their money to taxes, as opposed to the middle class' 25%. That's a significant difference.

    It's always good to see a reasonable Republican around. I really don't see many here.
  • RageFury jdemme 2011/08/23 03:09:38
    RageFury
    +1
    Voted Libertarian last election :P
  • jdemme RageFury 2011/08/23 04:22:06
    jdemme
    +1
    Lol. Good to know
  • JoeE71 2011/08/17 22:47:08
    Yes
    JoeE71
    Of course they are people! Where does any money go? They aren't robots or some unseen force. Come on people, don't be so STUPID!
  • taitaFa... JoeE71 2011/08/18 21:40:03
    taitaFalcon23
    corporations give a portion of the profits to shareholders who happen to qualify as human; it is not stupid to realize that the corporation - a thing.. pays itself first
  • Sam taitaFa... 2011/08/19 09:32:48
    Sam
    Baby facepalm.
  • taitaFa... Sam 2011/08/19 14:23:56
    taitaFalcon23
    oh no worry, I can teach you some more obvious facts
  • Sam taitaFa... 2011/08/20 04:46:34
    Sam
    Well since I have multiple business degrees I think I probably know a little bit more about it than you ; ).
  • taitaFa... taitaFa... 2011/08/20 16:08:05
    taitaFalcon23
    well taita - guess we found another girlscout with the skin of onion paper.... ASSumptions made everyday...
  • jdemme 2011/08/17 21:48:20 (edited)
    No
    jdemme
    No, they won't help. Companies try to turn a profit. Corporations are not people. They're organized by people, but are not people. A corporation's money and an individual's money are two different things. when a person is taxed, his company isn't, and when his company's taxed, he isn't. Apart from what most people think, the government does not run healthcare. It's free market. How's that working out for most people? My healthcare quality is going down while the price is going up. Why? Because they want to make more money. Government doesn't try to turn a profit, it tries to help. That's what Obamacare is for. Privatizing more things isn't going to help us. If these corporations decided to hire people and create jobs, things would be different. I'm not saying to go work for the government, I'm telling corporations to have a soul.
  • JoeE71 jdemme 2011/08/17 22:48:06
    JoeE71
    How can they have a soul if they aren't people?
  • jdemme JoeE71 2011/08/18 02:14:01
    jdemme
    +3
    Good point. Well, my only response is that you ignored the rest of the paragraph and decided to focus on me asking Corporations to be nice. I want them to be nice, but I'd rather not deregulate them and turn us back to the 1880's with Trusts and Monopoly's, which is where the Republican party and the Tea party are headed.
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