President Obama’s “you didn’t build that” comment has become a top campaign issue.
The uproar began when Obama, speaking on July 13 in Roanoke, Virginia, emphasized how an individual’s success in business is directly dependent upon the government’s spending on roads, bridges, education, etc.
“If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help,” he proclaimed. “Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
The Romney campaign responded by scheduling “We Did Build This” events in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, Wisconsin, Michigan, New Hampshire, Iowa, Missouri, North Carolina, Nevada, New Mexico, and Florida, featuring small business owners who wanted to respond to Obama’s perceived deprecation of entrepreneurship, individualism, and small business success.
Romney called Obama’s remark “extraordinarily revealing,” an unveiling of “an ideology that somehow says it’s the collective and government that we need to celebrate.”
The Obama campaign claims that the “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that” comment is being taken “out of context” and that Obama’s “didn’t build that” words were referring back to the “roads and bridges” in the prior sentence.
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Professor Ralph R. Reiland (photo)