A Campaign of Lies

Another day, another brazen lie from the Romney campaign.  The latest:

Ouch.  Devastating, right?  Not quite.  It’s a lie — and a big one.

Steve Benen dubs it “as dishonest an ad as you’ll ever see — in 2012 or in any other campaign cycle”:

First, a little background. Some Republican governors this year asked the Obama administration for some new flexibility on welfare standards — the governors had some ideas about moving folks from welfare to work and needed the White House to sign off. Obama agreed — existing work requirements would stay in place, but states, if they want to, can take advantage of new flexibility when it comes to experimenting with existing law.

This is the sort of shifting-power-to-the-states policy that Republicans are supposed to love. As of this morning, however, it’s the basis for a new Mitt Romney attack ad. […]

Romney’s lying. He’s not spinning the truth to his advantage; he’s not hiding in a gray area between fact and fiction; he’s just lying. The law hasn’t been “gutted”; the work requirement hasn’t been “dropped.” Stations that air this ad are disseminating an obvious, demonstrable lie.

All Obama did is agree to Republican governors’ request for flexibility. That’s it. Indeed, perhaps the most jaw-dropping aspect of this is that Romney himself, during his one gubernatorial term, asked for the same kind of flexibility on welfare law that Obama agreed to last month. Romney, in other words, is attacking the president for doing what Romney asked the executive branch to do in 2005. [emphasis mine]

If the lies were working, it might make sense for the Romney team to keep coming up with new ones.  But the thing is they’re not.  At all.  Joe Klein scratches his head:

How incompetent is the Romney campaign? They keep coming up with these stupid gambits–the last was the lie that Obama opposed early voting for members of the military in Ohio–that are shot down instantaneously (everywhere but in Fox-Rush land). And worse, the Democrats–who seem to have a superior oppo team–can often produce counter-stories, like the [story revealing Romney asked for a waiver himself while governor of MA], that make things even worse for Romney.

Then points out the obvious — it’s insulting to voters:

But there is a larger question here: How stupid does he think we are? Every day brings a mind-boggling act of untruth-telling. Last week, he told Sean Hannity that his economic plan “is very similar to the Simpson-Bowles plan.” Except for the fact that Simpson-Bowles raised $2 trillion in revenue over the next 10 years and Romney’s plan raises…well, he won’t say, but so far he hasn’t identified one red cent. I can’t remember a candidate so brazenly allergic to facts. What a travesty.

Benen hits it on the head — this kind of lying isn’t the kind of thing you do when you have a compelling case to make to voters:

[I]f Obama were as awful a president as Romney claims, the Republican attack machine wouldn’t have to make stuff up — the truth would be so brutal that voters would recoil and flock to the GOP candidate naturally. What does it say about Romney’s strength as a candidate that he has to make up garbage and hope voters don’t know the difference?

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About Hammertime
Georgetown sophomore, Job Creator.

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