Expect this sort of ugly rhetoric to grow:
Millman is confident “Romney writing off half the country as incorrigible parasites is not going to hurt his electoral prospects”:
Half of Americans think we spend more than 10% of the budget on foreign aid, and more than 5% of the budget on public broadcasting. Half of Americans think more than one-in-five Americans is gay. Most people have absolutely no idea how numbers work, or what numbers are plausible as an answer to a whole host of questions. And, by the way, while more-educated people do better on these kinds of quizzes than less-educated people, they don’t do nearly as well as you’d expect.
Nobody inclined to vote Republican thinks Romney is talking about white retirees or families of six making $50k/year when he talks about people who won’t “take responsibility” for their lives. Romney is running on saving Medicare from Obama’s “raid,” increasing defense spending, and exempting more unearned income from taxation altogether. So his voters know he’s not talking about them. He’s talking about moochers and parasites.
Matt Steinglass, on the other hand, argues that criticism from elites will cost Romney support:
[W]hat’s striking about Mr Romney’s flailing on-camera mess this week is that he has lost a major chunk of his elite, particularly in that part of the conservative commentariat that still has lines of communication open to liberals.