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January 06, 2012 3:25 PM Mitt’s mendacity

By Steve Benen

After catching Mitt Romney repeating another obvious falsehood, Greg Sargent noted this afternoon, “I know this risks getting boring and predictable, but we really should document them all.”

That’s a good idea. In fact, I’m thinking about starting a new feature for Friday afternoons, highlighting the Republican frontrunner’s most offensive falsehoods from the previous week. I’m thinking about making it a Top 5 list, but I suppose some weeks, it might be a Top 10 list.

Let’s take a look at this week’s contenders.

1. Romney campaigning in Iowa on Sunday: “[W]hen the president went around at the beginning of his term and apologized for America around the world, it made us just heartsick.”

He’s lying; the president never apologized for America. Romney knows this, but he keeps making the claim anyway.

2. Romney on Fox News on Tuesday: “I’ve still got the same positions on the issues I had four years ago. My record as governor and my positions are pretty darn conservative.”

That’s not even close to being true.

3. Romney talking about his jobs record on Fox News on Tuesday: “[At Bain Capital], we helped create over 100,000 new jobs.”

Actually, no, he didn’t.

4. Romney in New Hampshire on Wednesday said President Obama seeks “a ‘European-style welfare state’ to redistribute wealth and create ‘equal outcomes’ regardless of individual effort and success.”

This isn’t just a lie, it’s also “Glenn Beck-level insane.”

5. Romney in a new campaign ad airing in South Carolina: “The National Labor Relations Board, now stacked with union stooges selected by the president, says to a free enterprise like Boeing, ‘You can’t build a factory in South Carolina, because South Carolina is a right-to-work state.’ That is simply un-American. It’s political payback of the worst kind.”

Romney has said this before, and he’s been told every time, he’s lying.

Honorable mention: Romney continues to make wildly misleading comments about the president’s jobs record, too.

The hosts of CBS’s “The Early Show” this week seemed taken aback when Newt Gingrich called Romney “a liar,” prompting the disgraced former House Speaker to say they shouldn’t be “shocked” given Romney’s constant dishonesty.

As lists like these help demonstrate, Gingrich has a point.

Postscript: I plan to have another installment next Friday afternoon, but if you come across Romney whoppers and want to share them, feel free to email me.

Steve Benen is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly, joining the publication in August, 2008 as chief blogger for the Washington Monthly blog, Political Animal.

Comments

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  • Eeyore on January 06, 2012 3:28 PM:

    I like this. It reminds me of the list "The Odd Lies of Sarah Palin" created by Andrew Sullivan.

    I wonder if www.mittromneyslies.org has been registered yet?

    BTW: Captcha has been hijacked by Paul Ryan: ESTATEX NOT... no estate tax????

  • Mark-NC on January 06, 2012 3:29 PM:

    Brave - nice post.

    Now, if only the main stream media could read.....

  • beep52 on January 06, 2012 3:33 PM:

    Good idea, Steve. And should prove a good resource as well. Reminds me of the McCain flip-flop list.

  • Trish Ramey on January 06, 2012 3:35 PM:

    As a public service, you might want to keep track of all the lies on a master list that you can refer readers to from time to time. Also keep track of the number of individual times Mitt repackages the lie.

    Also, from time to time, perhaps you could forward the list to some some objective news reporters with a suggestion that they might follow up with the candidate and/or his campaign staff for comment.

    BTW, I found the Eric Alter article about Reagan's pathological lying and his role as the father of reliance on ideology instead of facts or reality to be illuminating.

  • Doc Sportello on January 06, 2012 3:36 PM:

    Great idea. A running compendium of Romney lies would be a great political tool. And entertaining.

  • MattF on January 06, 2012 3:37 PM:

    My suggestion-of-the-day is that the spell-and-style check functions of word processors ought to be set to change any clause "... but he's lying" that refers to Romney to "... and he's lying."

  • TR on January 06, 2012 3:39 PM:

    Fantastic. And really useful.

    If it's not too much hassle, putting all these together on a separate page -- with a steady URL, but regularly updated -- would be really helpful in getting the message out during the campaign.

  • g on January 06, 2012 3:45 PM:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zG7c7m37geI&feature=g-logo&context=G2eae0e2FOAAAAAAAAAA

    Mitt doesn't like it when he's called on playing word games

  • withay on January 06, 2012 3:45 PM:

    Others have already made varieties of the suggestion, but for those who don't recall the Carpetbagger Report days, this is what the flip flop list looked like:
    http://www.thecarpetbaggerreport.com/flipflops

    Steve, this new project is awesome and deserves the running list, since we have a long way to go until next November. It will also be SO handy to send along to all the doubters out there.

    THANK YOU!

  • slappy magoo on January 06, 2012 4:03 PM:

    Don't limit yourself to any number. List all the whoppers of the week, then let "we the people" vote on it throughout the weekend. Come Sunday night or Monday morning, you declare the winner the "Romney Reality Check of the Week." Followed by a press release from the Washington Monthly for media consumption. By the time the election comes, it could be something people look forward to every weekend like football scores and box office totals, what will make the grade THIS week?

  • Steve on January 06, 2012 4:09 PM:

    Hi Mr. Benen: I'd like to suggest that anytime Romney says something that's a lie, you make him a bet to prove it...let's say $10,000???

    Thanks! BTW, Love your blog!!

  • JD on January 06, 2012 4:12 PM:

    As Mary McCarthy said about Lillian Hellman, "Everything (he) says is a lie, including 'and' and 'the'".

  • Gandalf on January 06, 2012 4:13 PM:

    When Reagan was president it wasn't as easy to keep track of and instantly refute the lies like Romney spews. It's like he just doesn't realize that the internet is there.

    Had to go through six captchas to get one that a human could read. This is total bull shit. Oops make that seven.

  • DisgustedWithItAll on January 06, 2012 4:19 PM:

    Please, please, please get your exhaustive list going, Steve. I've been thinking about doing it myself, but ..., time and I don't have near the exposure you do. Crank it out.

  • DisgustedWithItAll on January 06, 2012 4:22 PM:

    How about an exhaustive list of flip-flops, also. (I know there are some, but it'd be nice to see them very simply laid out side-by-side with dates. The ones I've seen don't do that and it takes away from the breath-taking sheer number of them that exist.)

  • MNRD on January 06, 2012 4:23 PM:

    The real elephant in the room that the MSM is terrified of acknowledging is that NONE of these candidates makes a credible President. Romney's rivals are LESS credible than he is, but the truth is that he really doesn't make a credible President either.

    On paper, Huntsman should make a credible President, but the reality is that he's one of those candidates who looks good on paper but can't cut it on the level of Presidential politics - like Fred Thompson. Huntsman's basic strategy in this contest should be obvious, but he just doesn't get it. Again and again he pulls gratuitous maneuvers that severely undermine any chance he would have of gaining traction. I'm watching Gingrich and Santorum at this point and I can hardly believe what I'm seeing - it's as though it was the express strategy of these two to demonstrate to the country how unpresidential they really are. Romney's going to get this thing in the end simply because all of his rivals are spectacularly unpresidential.

    Take away his more spectacularly unpresidential rivals and look at Romney outside the context of the clown show, and it becomes clear that he too is remarkably unpresidential. Romney is significantly less presidential than such unsuccessful past Presidential nominees as Dole, Gore, and Kerry. Each of those three unsuccessful candidates had far more gravitas than Romney. Each of those three unsuccessful candidates were far more statesmanlike than Romney could ever dream of being.

  • Ron Byers on January 06, 2012 4:27 PM:

    If you look at Romney's lies, you will see he is merely repeating what is being said on Fox News or hate radio every single day. Romney is telling the haters in the base exactly what he thinks they want to hear.

    I think we need to start pounding on honesty in broadcasting. We need to pound it everyday. Dishonesty is a Romney trait, but the dishonesty is targeted and he is being dishonest in ways that sound honest to his audience. The fact is his audience in the Republican base never hears the truth, so they think honest comments are lies.

  • Sgt. Gym Bunny on January 06, 2012 4:31 PM:

    Well, I'm sure Mr. Fibby-Mitty has a legion of creative writing staffers who will be more than willing to razzle dazzle this humble blog with even more entries in the weeks to come...

  • sick-n-effn-tired. on January 06, 2012 4:35 PM:

    Please include something about the repetitive Amber waves stump Speech ala Colbert
    http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/405156/january-04-2012/indecision-2012---iowa-caucus---mitt-romney-s-victory-speech---rick-santorum-s-coup
    I mean how many times con you repeat the same unoriginal shit .
    They are even noticing on the MSM

  • j on January 06, 2012 4:44 PM:

    Sorry to change the subject, but has anyone else noticed how many senior moments McCain has been having?

  • hells littlest angel on January 06, 2012 4:51 PM:

    Great idea, but it will do nothing to discourage the impression that some have that you're a workaholic.

  • sick-n-effn-tired. on January 06, 2012 4:59 PM:

    @ j Oh yeh . I heard a clip of him talking on NPR today... really really sounded like one of those "Hey you kids get off of my lawn" types.
    Nice shot on TPM too
    http://media.talkingpointsmemo.com/slideshow/mccain-campaign-trail-mitt-romney?ref=fpb

  • Scott on January 06, 2012 5:14 PM:

    We've got http://whichmitt.com and http://multiplechoicemitt.com . How about adding a mittstatement.com? The quote from Sen. Kyl's office could often be applied to Mitt, "That wasn't meant as a factual statement."

  • zeitgeist on January 06, 2012 5:16 PM:

    he actually has an ad that uses the term "union stooges"???

    freakin' awesome.

    if his team wants to be so arrogant that they ignore that Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Washington state -- swing states all -- have union membership between 15-20% who are the very white working class males that have been drifting away from the Dems for decades, i certainly don't intend to stop them.

    i'll be disappointed if the DNC and OFA don't use that footage in those states come October.

  • Joseph Miller on January 06, 2012 5:19 PM:

    I have a new blog called ROMNEY THE LIAR in which I am attempting to keep up with all of Willard's fantastic lies. It's right here: http://romneytheliar.blogspot.com/

    I'm not making any money off this. It's a sheer labor of love.

  • Scott on January 06, 2012 5:27 PM:

    mendaciousmitt.com has a nice ring to it too.

  • Cha on January 06, 2012 5:32 PM:

    Thank you so much for compiling an exhaustive list of mittoinette kochead's LIES. Should fill volumes..and, like a poster suggested..have a master list to refer to which I'm sure you've thought of.

    I've been saying the Obama Campaign needs to have a website to keep up with romeny's LIES like they do his flip-flops on whichmitt.com.

    And, captcha has been ridiculous lately. Some stupid eye test that I don't feel like trying to pass. For awhile there it was ok..a matter of typing it in. What's the point of having it unreadable besides wasting time and making us frustrated?

  • ameshall on January 06, 2012 5:38 PM:

    I'm glad to see you holding Romney & the other GOP candidates accountable for their ridiculous lies, but why are you the lone wolf taking this on? The rest of the media seems content to focus on the horse race, and the DNC is apparently on an extended vacation.

  • Cha on January 06, 2012 5:40 PM:

    @ Joseph Miller

    Thank you for your link and all your work on this neverending issue of williard's lies! I'll be passing this on to theobamadiary.

  • Cha on January 06, 2012 6:09 PM:

    @ Joseph Miller

    Thank you for your link and all your work on this neverending issue of williard's lies! I'll be passing this on to theobamadiary.

  • sick -n-effin-tired on January 06, 2012 6:15 PM:

    @ J - here's on more for you of gramps flubbing a speech forgetting Romney's name Kind of sad really , watching the dementia set in.
    http://2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/01/clip-of-the-day-mccain-forgets-romneys-name.php?ref=fpa

  • Cha on January 06, 2012 6:19 PM:

  • JS on January 06, 2012 6:22 PM:

    Yes, by all means - a master link sitting at the top of the page all campaign season would be a helpful resource to anyone making an effort to pooper-scoop posts coming from the interns at the computer bank in the basement of the Heritage Foundation..

    .. it might even get stumbled-upon by a member of the village. Actual journalism may ensue. Dare we dream?

  • tedb on January 06, 2012 7:22 PM:

    Well, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius apologized to the government of Guatemala and the survivors and descendants of those infected with syphillis in experiments in the 1940's which infected nearly 700 Guatemalans — prison inmates, mental patients and soldiers — with venereal diseases in what was meant as an effort to test the effectiveness of penicillin. . They called the experiments “clearly unethical.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/02/health/research/02infect.html

    Of course, this apology was the only decent thing to do, which sort of leaves the Republicans out of their league.

  • emjayay on January 06, 2012 7:36 PM:

    Just now Romney is on the teevee saying that Obama's proposed adjustments to the military are "inexcusable". (= unpatriootic, antiAmerican, etc.) Apparently only a bigger and bigger military is acceptable to patriots like Mitt.

    I suggested here that Romney's ability to say with a straight face whatever absurdity he thinks will work is based on his Bain Capital corporate raider experience. Another commenter here suggested it's from his years as a Mormon missionary in France, spending all day trying to convince people with absurd Mormon stories. Probably both are part of the story. Plus, I dunno, complete lack of character?

  • Sammy on January 06, 2012 7:46 PM:

    Really love this new site:

    Romney the Liar
    http://romneytheliar.blogspot.com/

  • Joseph Miller on January 06, 2012 7:53 PM:

    Thanks, everyone! I will posting a new Romney lie every single day. I just hope I have room for all of them.

  • rikyrah on January 06, 2012 8:30 PM:

    I think you should start a wikipedia of Willard's lies.

    Don't pick the best ones of the week.

    have one place where they can be there for all to see.

    yes, the list will get long...but, that's the point.

    a warehouse of Willard's LIES so folks can go to it, and refer to it, and refer others to it.

  • exlibra on January 06, 2012 8:36 PM:

    Every song Mitt sings, no matter the tune, is a lul-lie-by.

  • burro on January 06, 2012 9:01 PM:

    If it's Friday, it's Lieday. The truth hurts, so they say. His Mittness wants to avoid it at all costs.

  • bob h on January 07, 2012 7:19 AM:

    We had the very fine Bushwatch in the plague years of 2001-2009; do we need Romneywatch now?

  • Anonymous on January 07, 2012 4:25 PM:

    j wonders if anyone noticed Mc Cain's goofs, hopefully we can see the biggest one so far about Obama fixing the economy very soon now, every day until election day, man it's a beaut! After foisting us with Palin, who is a thorn to the world, he deserves no less than to be reminded everyday. It has turned him into an angry old man, who needs to step down .

    The list will be a long one & can't begin soon enough, hope it becomes Steve's list on what is as always a "must read". Thanks for all you do Steve!

  • Asho on January 10, 2012 8:46 AM:

    On paper, Huntsman should make a credible President, but the reality is that he's one of those candidates who looks good on paper but can't cut it on the level of Presidential politics - like Fred Thompson. Huntsman's basic strategy in this contest should be obvious, but he just doesn't get it. Again and again he pulls gratuitous maneuvers that severely undermine any chance he would have of gaining traction. I'm watching Gingrich and Santorum at this point and I can hardly believe what I'm seeing - it's as though it was the express strategy of these two to demonstrate to the country how unpresidential they really are. Romney's going to get this thing in the end simply because all of his rivals are spectacularly unpresidential. http://tutorialsmad.com

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