2012 Obama VS. Romney

"These Hands"

[Caption: Sidney, Ohio]

Obama: If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own

[Caption: Denny Sollmann, Owner]

Obama: If you didn’t get there on your own, I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I’m just so smart.

[Caption: Sollmann Electric Company]

Obama: There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something, if you got a business, that, you didn’t build that, somebody else made that happen.

Sollmann: I mean, I’m thinking, you’re kidding me. He was trying to say, hey, you didn’t build that business on your own. The government helped you build it. And that’s what ticked me off more than anything. Mr. President, unfortunately, you have no idea how we here in Midwestern Ohio have to try and run a small business from daylight ‘til night. Not only my business, but other small business around here, they’re all scared to death, that the path that we’re headed with the current administration, is not the path for America. We need a new path, so that my son and my grandson can prosper like I did. What we need is a leader who truly understands, truly understands how business works. My name’s Dennis Sollman, president of Sollman Electric, and I built this.

Romney: The idea, to say that Steve Jobs didn’t build Apple, that Henry Ford didn’t build Ford Motor, to say something like that is not just foolishness, it’s insulting to ever entrepreneur, every innovator in America, and it’s wrong.

[Caption: In Ohio, We Built It.]



"These Hands," Romney for President, Inc., 2012

From Museum of the Moving Image, The Living Room Candidate: Presidential Campaign Commercials 1952-2012.
www.livingroomcandidate.org/commercials/2012/these-hands (accessed July 24, 2024).


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2012 Romney Results
President Obama won reelection in 2012 despite weak economic conditions. The economic collapse of 2008 resulted in soaring unemployment rates that have been as high as 10%, and remained at more than 8% through most of 2012; this is the highest unemployment rate since the 1982 recession. The state of the U.S. economy was the dominant issues, with Barack Obama’s campaign arguing that the president has taken action to rescue the economy and turn it in the right direction, and Mitt Romney’s campaign arguing that the recovery isn't happening quickly enough. In an election year marked by a troubled economy and low public approval of the government, it was not surprising that the tenor of the ad campaign was extremely negative. With total spending by the official campaigns and outside “Super PAC” groups expected to reach more than one billion dollars, there has been a deluge of negative ads. Well more than 75% of all presidential campaign ads in 2012 were negative.
Mitt Romney for president
Paul Ryan for vice president
The Romney campaign tried to define the Obama presidency as a failure, citing high unemployment, rising deficits, and higher gas prices. It tried to capitalize on the comment “you didn’t build that” by President Obama, made during a speech, attempting to portray the president as favoring big government over private enterprise. This line of attack didn't make much of a dent in Obama's popularity, its impact weakened by the wide circulation of a video recording of Romney saying that he didn't care about 47% of the population, who were destined to vote for Obama.