Mitt Romney was caught on videotape criticizing Obama voters.
(USA TODAY) -- The magazine Mother Jones posted the entire secretly taped video of Mitt Romney making remarks to donors in May.
Among other things, Romney says that 47% of Americans "are dependent on government" and "believe that they are victims."
Watch the full fundraiser video below
The magazine posted clips from the secret video Monday afternoon, and the Romney quotes touched off a controversy. Mother Jones did not disclose the video's source but said the tape's authenticity was confirmed.
Jim Messina, President Obama's campaign manager, said the comments from Romney showed "disgust and disdain."
Romney stood by his comments Monday night, saying they were "not elegantly stated" but reflect his view that President Obama and his supporters believe in a "government-centered society."
See Also: Fact-checking Romney's "47 percent" comment
"The president believes in what I've described as a government-centered society, where government plays a larger and larger role, provides for more and more of the needs of the individuals," Romney said in Orange County, Calif. "I happen to believe instead in a free enterprise, free individual society where people pursuing their dreams are able to employ one another, build enterprises, build the strongest economy in the world."
According to the non-partisan Tax Policy Center, about 46% of Americans paid no income tax in 2011. However, nearly two-thirds of households that don't pay income tax pay payroll taxes. Of the people who don't pay income or payroll taxes, more than half are elderly. The center says more than one-third of those who don't pay income or payroll taxes have incomes of less than $20,000.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus defended Romney Monday in an interview with CNN.
"The point of all of this is the size of the government is too big and if we don't do something about it we're going to really lose the very idea of America," Priebus said on CNN's The Situation Room.
Posts on Twitter about Romney generated 69,000 tweets and retweets in the 11 p.m. hour last night, about an hour after the GOP presidential nominee's hastily called news conference in California. By comparison, there were 19,000 tweets and retweets about Romney at 4 p.m., according to the analysis by Voter Tide, a social media analysis firm. Voter Tide says there were more than 400,000 tweets about Romney yesterday or four times the usual amount.
Obama's campaign immediately began fundraising off Romney's secretly taped comments, according to Politico and The New York Times. The fundraising e-mail came from Jim Messina, Obama's campaign manager, who Monday called Romney's comments "shocking."