DeMint Echoes ’47 Percent’: 69.5 Million ‘Depend On The Federal Government’

Former Republican senator and new Heritage Foundation president Jim DeMint on Thursday echoed one of the most infamous lines from the 2012 campaign.

In a letter to the conservative think tank’s staff, DeMint warned that the millions of Americans who “depend on the federal government” for a variety of essential services could cause “economic and social collapse.”

“Today, more people than ever before — 69.5 million Americans, from college students to retirees to welfare beneficiaries — depend on the federal government for housing, food, income, student aid, or other assistance once considered to be the responsibility of individuals, families, neighborhoods, churches, and other civil society institutions,” Demint wrote in the letter. “”The United States must reverse the direction of these trends or face economic and social collapse.”

The letter called to mind remarks made by former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who spoke ill of the 47 percent of the country that depends on the government. DeMint left the Senate in January to lead the Heritage Foundation after representing South Carolina for two terms.


h/t HuffPo


Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at