Court `Revved’ Romney’s Base, Jets Owner Tells Donors

Photograph by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Mitt Romney supporters.

Updated at 11 am EDT

On the road, the day after the ruling:

Republican Mitt Romney told campaign donors today that the Supreme Court ruling upholding President Barack Obama’s health-care law “calls for greater urgency” in the Nov. 6 election.

“I think people recognize that if you want to replace Obamacare, you’ve got to replace President Obama,” Romney said. “And the urgency of doing that is something which is galvanizing people across the country,” the presumptive Republican presidential nominee told donors over breakfast at Cipriani in midtown Manhattan.

While “many people assumed that the Supreme Court would do the work that was necessary in repealing Obamacare,” Romney said, “it did not get that job done. It instead came up with an interpretation to allow it to stand.”

The campaign says it sold about 600 tickets to the fundraiser, which cost $2,500 for a seat and $25,000 for a photograph with Romney. It declined to reveal how much the event raised. The money goes to Romney Victory Inc., a joint fundraising committee that sends proceeds to the Romney campaign, the Republican National Committee and some state Republican committees.

Romney was introduced by Woody Johnson, owner of the New York Jets professional football team and a top surrogate for Romney in the business community. In introducing Romney, Johnson said that Chief Justice John Roberts, who sided with the 5-4 majority and wrote the opinion upholding the health-care law, gave Romney supporters a rallying call.

“I think Judge Roberts did this intentionally, he’s really revved up our base from what we’re able to gather,” Johnson said. “He’s really revved us up.”

(The Obama campaign says its fundraising is going just fine — outpacing what the Romney camp is claiming in online donations since the health-care ruling.)

Johnson told donors after Romney’s remarks that their money would be spent wisely. “Mitt does not spend money frivolously” and “some people say he’s cheap, which is good,” Johnson said.

Obama and Romney are intensifying their fundraising efforts before the June 30 cutoff for the nextround of campaign finance reports. Those documents, covering receipts and spending for June, are due to the Federal Election Commission by July 20, though campaign officials may reveal their top-line numbers as early as next week.

Since the Supreme Court ruling, the Romney campaign says, supporters have contributed $4.,3 million to the campaign online. This won’t be independently verifiable until the monthly reports are filed with the FEC. However, campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul said this morning that they had recorded 43,000 donations since the ruling. The Romney campaign normally clocks about $140,000 a day in online donations, Saul told us. Their biggest online haul, before the health-care ruling, she adds, was one $400,000 day.

The Obama campaign is pointing out the absence of an alternative on health care from Romney, as he pledges to repeal the president’s law offering insurance to more than 30 million Americans.

“It’s perverse that Mitt Romney wont share details about what he’d do for the millions he’d leave uninsured or at the whims of insurance companies when he ‘kills Obamacare dead,’ but he’ll share the hourly details of his fundraising after the Supreme Court ruling,” Ben LaBolt, press secretary for Obama’s campaign ,said  in an e-mail today. “We’ve out-raised the Romney campaign in that time period but that’s not the point –  our supporters are more committed than ever to ensuring that insurance companies can’t drop coverage for people who get sick or discriminate against people with preexisting conditions by reelecting the president.”

Greg Giroux reported from New York, Julianna Goldman and Mark Silva  from Washington 




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