By Adele Hampton - 07/31/12 12:50 PM EDT
Romney caused a stir when, at a fundraiser of top Jewish donors in Israel on Monday, he said culture and the "hand of providence" were responsible for the "stark difference in economic vitality" between Israel and Palestine. The remark drew cries of racism from Palestinian leaders.
"As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel, which is about $21,000, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality," Romney said.
"And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things," Romney continued, crediting Jewish perseverance and business culture in explaining that gap.
On the last day of his nearly weeklong tour, Romney's camp faced another misstep when the traveling press secretary for the former Massachusetts governor, Rick Gorka, cursed at reporters.
"Kiss my a--," Gorka responded to a reporter's complaint about the lack of opportunity to ask Romney questions. "This is a holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect."
Shortly thereafter, Gorka told a second reporter to "shove it."
Gorka later apologized to reporters for his reaction.
"And now you've got this fellow here in Poland making the comment he made," Cummings continued, in reference to Gorka's comments. "The one thing that we're forgetting is that you have a very frustrated press corps that have only had three questions answered by Mr. Romney during this trip and it's basically consistent Romney stuff."