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Romney: 'Victims' comment not elegantly stated

Republican Mitt Romney is responding to a video taken secretly of him discussing the American electorate

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney boards his campaign charter plane in Kansas City, Mo., after a refueling as he travels to Los Angeles, Sunday, Sept. 16, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) - Republican Mitt Romney is trying to head off a new distraction for his campaign after a video surfaced showing him telling wealthy donors that 47 percent of all Americans "believe they are victims" entitled to help from the government.

Romney offered no apologies at a news conference Monday but conceded the comments were not "elegantly stated" and spoken "off the cuff."

The Republican presidential nominee says the remarks showed a contrast between President Barack Obama's "government-centered society" and his belief in a "free-market approach."

Obama's campaign is pouncing on the video and using it to encourage supporters to donate money to the president's re-election effort.

The video comes as Romney advisers try to reassure party leaders and donors about the Republican's ability to win the White House.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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