Battered by growing scrutiny over how he acquired his massive wealth, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney fed concerns of South Carolina’s Republican primary voters when he refused to immediately release his tax returns. Instead, Romney accused President Barack Obama and his Republican opponents of engaging in “class warfare” and attacks against “success.”
The “class warfare” accusation has become so commonplace among the Republican field that now NBC’s David Gregory, the host of Meet the Press, believes that President Obama “wants to play” the “class warfare argument,” as this ThinkProgress compilation shows:
GREGORY: Can you have a Republican nominee who can play into the class warfare argument that the president wants to play in general?
ROMNEY: Our president has divided the nation, engaged in class warfare and attacked a free enterprise system that has made America the economic envy of the world. We cannot defeat that president with a candidate who has joined in that very assault on free enterprise. When my opponents attack success and free enterprise, they’re not only attacking me, they’re attacking every person who dreams of a better future, he’s attacking you.
GINGRICH: We are for helping the people who want to create jobs. He wants to wage class warfare against the people who create jobs.
CAIN: I don’t think he needs to release his tax returns and here is why: it gives liberals another arguing point for class warfare. Class warfare divides this country, just like when they bring up the race card, it divides us.
As former candidate and Romney endorser Herman Cain succinctly described, Republicans don’t want Americans to know the facts about Mitt Romney’s extraordinary wealth, because then this country might think about the growing economic class divide in the nation. The U.S. has a higher level of income inequality than Europe, Canada, Australia, or South Korea. Multi-millionaires like Romney and billionaires like the funders of the SuperPACs dominating this campaign season have been getting lower tax rates even as their wealth grows.