Several weeks ago, I launched a new Friday afternoon feature, highlighting the most blatant Mitt Romney falsehoods of the week. It moved to Maddow Blog last week, and here’s this week’s installment. (It does not include mendacity from Romney’s CPAC speech this afternoon.)
1. Romney claimed, “We are the only people on the earth that put our hand over our heart during the playing of the national anthem. It was FDR who asked us to do that, in honor of the blood that was being shed by our sons and daughters in far-off places.”
This is both untrue and rather strange.
2. Romney argued in a speech, “You know, like his colleagues in the faculty lounge, who think they know better, President Obama demonizes and denigrates almost every sector of our economy.”
Asked to back that up, the Romney campaign pointed to President Obama’s criticism of Wall Street recklessness, insurance company abuses, and oil companies. If those three represent “almost every sector of our economy,” then Romney doesn’t understand the private sector as well as he thinks he does.
3. Romney claimed, “Just this last week, this same administration said that in churches and the institutions they run, such as schools and let’s say adoption agencies, hospitals, that they have to provide for their employees, free of charge, contraceptives, morning-after pills – in other words abortive pills and the like at no cost.”
That’s not even close to being an accurate description of the policy.
4. Romney argued, “More Americans have lost their jobs during President Obama’s term than during any other President in modern history.”
That only makes sense if Romney holds the job losses from early 2009 – before Obama could even begin governing in earnest – against him. If you blame the president for job losses that occurred 11 days after his inauguration, then Romney’s claim is sort of true. If you’re willing to be fair, then Romney’s being deliberately misleading.
5. Romney once again insisted this week, “This is a president who began his presidency by apologizing for America.”
That’s a lie. It never happened.
6. Romney claimed, “Three years ago, a newly elected President Obama told America that if Congress approved his plan to borrow nearly a trillion dollars he would hold unemployment below 8 percent.”
7. Romney told supports in Las Vegas that the president told Americans “to skip coming here for conventions and meetings.”
No, Obama actually said, in reference to Wall Street recklessness, “You are not going to be able to give out these big bonuses until you pay taxpayers back. You can’t get corporate jets. You can’t go take a trip to Las Vegas or go down to the Super Bowl on the taxpayers’ dime. There’s got to be some accountability and some responsibility.”
8. Romney argued, “[O]ne of the most important and personal matters of our lives are our health care, is our health care. President Obama would turn the decision-making over to government bureaucrats.”
No honest evaluation of the Affordable Care Act could lead a literate person to believe this.
9. Romney claimed, “President Obama is shrinking our military.”
Obama has increased defense spending three times in three years. The Pentagon budget is poised to shrink, but Republicans have backed the cuts, and the reductions are to be expected after one war ends and another scales back.
10. Romney told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto he tried to “remove” the contraception mandate in Massachusetts, but the state legislature wouldn’t let him.
Paul Krugman, noting Romney’s dishonesty, recently said the Republican presidential candidate “seems confident that he will pay no price for making stuff up.” Given the frequency with which he repeats falsehoods, it seems clear Krugman was right.