Wednesday, Oct 31, 2012 5:41 PM UTC

Romney camp spent $5,000 to stage storm relief event

The Romney campaign stocked up at Walmart before a disaster relief photo-op

The Romney campaign changed a planned campaign event in Dayton, Ohio into a Hurricane Sandy “storm relief event,” but due to the last-minute change was left spending $5,000 at Walmart for “donations” to put on display.

Supporters were told to bring supplies to the event and then bring them up to a table where Romney would be sitting with Ohio Sen. Rob Portman. “To complete the project and photo-op, Romney would lead his crew in carrying the goods out of the gymnasium and into the Penske rental truck parked outside,”¬†McKay Coppins of Buzzfeed writes.

But the night before, campaign staff stocked up on supplies at Walmart, to the tune of $5,000, just to be sure they had enough for the photo op.

From Buzzfeed:

As supporters lined up to greet the candidate, a young volunteer in a Romney/Ryan t-shirt stood near the tables, his hands cupped around his mouth, shouting, ‘You need a donation to get in line!’

Empty-handed supporters pled for entrance, with one woman asking, ‘What if we dropped off our donations up front?’

The volunteer gestured toward a pile of groceries conveniently stacked near the candidate. ‘Just grab something,’he said.

Two teenage boys retrieved a jar of peanut butter each, and got in line. When it was their turn, they handed their ‘donations’ to Romney. He took them, smiled, and offered an earnest ‘Thank you.’”