The 47th parallel

Mitt Romney’s bulletin board comment that “47 percent of all Americans believe they are victims” is having reverberations in Connecticut’s Senate race.

Democratic political operatives on Tuesday circulated a WTNH television interview from last September with Linda McMahon, in which the now-Republican Senate nominee was asked by veteran newsman Mark Davis whether the wealthy should pay higher taxes.

“I’d like to see everyone pay their fair share,” McMahon told Davis. “Forty-seven percent of the people today don’t pay any taxes, so let’s have a fair tax code where everybody pays their taxes.”

Here are the videos so you can judge them for yourself:

McMahon’s call for reform of the tax code comes at the 1:00 minute mark of this video.

McMahon launches second Senate campaign

Democrats say that McMahon’s comments sound eerily similar to the now-viral video of Romney telling a group of campaign contributors at a May 17 fundraiser that President Obama’s supporters are “victims” who “depend on government.”

Eager to draw an analogy between McMahon and Romney is U.S. Rep. Christopher Murphy, McMahon’s Democratic opponent.

“It is not a coincidence that Mitt Romney and Linda McMahon are using the exact same number and the exact same script,” Murphy told Hearst Connecticut Newspapers this afternoon. “Linda McMahon is a carbon copy of Mitt Romney when it comes to this belief that half of Americans are paying no taxes and are victims.”


McMahon’ spokesman Todd Abrajano referred to a statement put out by his candidate to select members of the media Tuesday morning distancing herself from Romney’s stream of consciousness.

“Linda has clearly disavowed Mitt Romney’s comments on this matter and Congressman Murphy’s continued efforts to ignore his own ethical issues are simply weak attempts to change the subject,” Abrajano told Hearst Connecticut Newspapers.

Abrajano also sought to put the McMahon’s sound bite into its so-called proper context.

“When Linda stated that 47 percent of Americans don’t pay taxes, she was referring to federal income taxes, and that’s a fact,” Abrajano said.

CBS News did its own fact-check on Romney’s assertion that 47 percent of Americans pay no federal income taxes.

No wonder the Romney campaign has made an executive decision to close his fundraisers to the media, as was the case when the former Massachusetts governor visited Greenwich in May fill his war chest.

Among those organizations hawking the clip of McMahon to members of the media Tuesday was American Bridge 21st Century, Washington, D.C., based liberal political action committee whose communications “war room” is headed up by former Richard Blumenthal campaign flack Ty Matsdorf.

Blumenthal beat McMahon two years ago for the Senate seat of retiring incumbent Chris Dodd.

Neil Vigdor