A 1998 comment by then-State Sen. Barack Obama regarding “redistribution” has been disseminated as a way to blunt Mitt Romney‘s “47%” remarks from earlier this year. While other news organizations ran with the version of those remarks that was distributed by the President’s opponents, NBC News made a decision to stop running the clip until it could be verified. That caution has been partially vindicated, as NBC News’ Michael O’Brien reports that they have obtained video of the comment in question that includes context that was omitted in the more widely-distributed version.
After the truncated version of Obama’s remarks ran once on MSNBC’s The Daily Rundown, a decision was apparently made not to run the clip again until it could be “authenticated,” and while the President’s campaign later verified it was his voice on the tape, the discovery of this longer version bears out the decision to wait. From NBC News’ Michael O’Brien:
Mitt Romney’s campaign this week has pounced on a 14-year-old clip of Obama speaking about “redistribution” in October 1998 at a conference in Chicago, in which the future president seems to extol the virtues of redistributing wealth.
Yet NBC News has obtained the entirety of the relevant remarks, which includes additional comments by Obama that weren’t included in the video circulated by Republicans. That omission features additional words of praise for “competition” and the “marketplace” by the then-state senator.