EDSHOW – “The not-so-lazy 47 percent”

By Jen Brockman

(Photo: Associated Press/ Mary Altaffer)

One of the things that makes Mitt Romney’s 47 percent comment stand out is that it flies in the face of what we really know about most Americans and our work ethic.

As you probably know, Romney was recently caught telling a group of wealthy donors back in May, “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what.  All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it.”

Romney calls almost half of the American population “dependent,” “victims” who “believe that they are entitled” to the basic necessities.  Keep that in mind as you read this next statistic:

90 percent of wage and salary workers were offered paid or unpaid leave in 2011, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Only 21 percent used that leave.  You can see the whole studyhere.


These are working Americans who were offered some form of time off and didn’t take it.  And it’s not because they didn’t get paid.  During an average week, 57 percent used only their paid leave.  40 precent used unpaid.