"Very poor" are dirty words in this nation, and I have come to grips with the shame I once carried about being impoverished. I have also learned that very poor has much more to do with the spirit of a person than it does with the balance in his bank account.
While most of the attention so far has been focused on the "out of touch" nature of Mitt's "very poor" choice of words, the real damage to Mitt as a Republican candidate stems from how he attempted to explain what he really meant.
Mitt Romney, frontrunner for the Republican nomination, announced he wasn't too worried about poor people. Maybe it would be fun to see Romney debate Joe Biden, just because nobody would know what to expect from either of them.
"I'm not concerned about the very poor," is sure to dog Romney throughout the campaign. But as he continues to explain what he meant, I hope he takes the opportunity to think about the "very poor." And I hope he is concerned. We all should be.
I don't think Mitt Romney was saying he doesn't actually care about the "very poor." In fact, I believe he does care -- as do most reasonable people. But he clearly doesn't understand what "very poor" means, or how it relates to the middle class today.