US: Romney booed for claim to improve blacks` lot

Mitt Romney was met with a round of boos when he made a bold claim that he would make things better for African-American community.

Updated: Jul 12, 2012, 16:19 PM IST

Washington: Likely Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney was met with a round of boos from a group of African-American voters when he made a bold claim that he would make things better for the community.

"If you want a president who will make things better in the African-American community, you are looking at him," he said on Wednesday during a speech at the National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP) annual convention in Houston.

President Barack Obama`s challenger in the November Presidential Election met with more boos when in his 25-minute speech he promised to fight teachers` unions and repeal Obama`s signature health care plan, dubbed by critics as `Obamacare`.

"I`m going to eliminate every non-essential expensive programme I can find. That includes Obamacare, and I`m going to work to reform and save," he said, before being interrupted by the unhappy crowd, according to CNN.

Romney paused for 15 seconds, as he looked out over the crowd hissing and jeering. Then instead of moving on to his next point, he went off-script to back up his claim.

Romney mentioned, as the boos began to fade, a survey of 1,500 members of the Chamber of Commerce, in which three-quarters said Obama`s health care plan made them "less likely to hire people”.

"So I say again," Romney was quoted as saying. "If our priority is jobs, and that`s my priority, that`s something I`d change and I`d replace with something that provides to people something they need in health care, which is lower costs, good quality, a capacity to deal with people who have pre-existing conditions and I`ll put that in place."

After the speech, the NAACP released a statement thanking Romney for addressing its convention. But then NAACP chairman Roslyn Brock and NAACP president Benjamin Todd Jealous both criticised his policies saying "much of his agenda is at odds with what the NAACP stands for”.

IANS