The number $77,000 comes from the loss that Romney declared on Rafalca in his 2010 tax returns, although the Romneys actually only received a $50 tax deduction for Rafalca that year.
The release came the same day the Romneys’ horse made her debut at the Olympics. Ann Romney was there to watch and said she was “thrilled” by the performance.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has also used Rafalca in previous attack ads that hit the Romneys on their personal wealth, although the strategy earned some criticism because of the established relationship between Ann Romney’s horseback riding and therapy for her multiple sclerosis.
MoveOn said Rafalca is fair game because the way Romney uses his money relates to the positions taken by his campaign on taxes and healthcare. The group asked supporters to donate money toward the Olympic-timed TV ad, saying it would tell Romney to “quit horsing around with America's future.”
“In our ad, voters hear the truth about Mitt Romney straight from the horse’s mouth: Romney seems to think many Americans deserve to be treated worse than a horse,” said Justin Ruben, executive director of MoveOn.org Political Action, in a statement. “There’s nothing wrong with taking good care of a horse, but there’s something messed up about a millionaire who spends twice what most Americans make in a year caring for a horse, but wants to take away people’s healthcare and offshore their jobs. We’re rooting for Rafalca and all of our Olympians to bring home the gold, but we’re sure not rooting for Mitt Romney to send jobs overseas. Voters had best steer clear of Romney, unless they’re looking for a ride on a one-trick trickle-down pony.”
MoveOn says the 30-second TV ad is running Thursday in swing states.