WASHINGTON, Sept 18 Republican Mitt Romney's
reeling campaign hit more trouble on Tuesday after new video
surfaced showing him saying that Palestinians do not want peace
and a resolution of their conflict with Israel was not possible.
"I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway,
for political purposes, committed to the destruction and
elimination of Israel, and these thorny issues, and I say
there's just no way," Romney said in the secretly recorded video
of a closed-door May fundraiser in Florida.
The images are the second from a video of the event that was
published by liberal magazine Mother Jones. Romney was already
in damage control from the first, which showed him describing
President Barack Obama's supporters as victims who are too
dependent on government and unwilling to take responsibility for
their own lives.
Romney held a Monday night news conference in California to
try to contain the damage from the video but did not back away
from the remarks about Obama supporters, which raised fresh
questions about the competence and direction of his campaign to
boot Obama from the White House.
"It's not elegantly stated, let me put it that way," Romney
said. "I'm speaking off the cuff in response to a question."
The video capped a difficult two-week period for Romney, who
has fallen slightly behind Obama in opinion polls, taken heavy
criticism for a hasty attack on the president during assaults on
U.S. compounds in Egypt and Libya and faced a damaging Politico
story about infighting in his campaign team.
Obama's campaign team pounced to criticize the video.
" It's extremely troubling that you're running to be the
president of the United States but you've written off half of
the country," O bama campaign adviser Stephanie Cutter said on
The missteps overshadowed an effort by Romney's campaign to
roll out more policy specifics and a set of new TV ads to
address rising criticism and worries from Republicans concerned
he is losing ground to Obama.