Bill Clinton Takes On Romney’s 47 Percent Claim

Appearing on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS, Bill Clinton was asked whether he sees any truth to Mitt Romney’s characterization that the 47 percent of Americans who don’t pay federal income taxes are dependent on government.

“No,” the former president responded. He noted that much of those 47 percent pay payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare as well as state and local taxes.

“The money we spend is not out of line with other advanced countries,” he said. “In fact, we spend a smaller percentage of our GDP than almost any other country.”

Asked if the uneathed remarks are a “game changer” for Romney, Clinton said, “I think it puts a heavier burden on him in the debates to talk about what he meant.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sahil Kapur is TPM's senior congressional reporter and Supreme Court correspondent. His articles have been published in the Huffington Post, The Guardian and The New Republic. Email him at sahil@talkingpointsmemo.com and follow him on Twitter at @sahilkapur.
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