March 9, 2007
"Hugo Chavez has tried to steal an inspiring phrase 'Patria o muerte, venceremos.' It does not belong to him. It belongs to a free Cuba."
Romney, in front of a large group of fiercely anti-Castro Latino Republicans. The phrase (which means in Spanish "Fatherland or death, we shall overcome") does not belong to a free Cuba. In fact, it is a fascist tagline for Castro, who Romney had, earlier in the same speech, declared "a stain on Cuban soil." A campaign spokesman later said that Romney "was trying to make the point that the phrase should not be used by oppressors, but by liberators. It was an unfortunate error in the language that certainly wasn't meant to offend."
Ana Marie Cox