Mitt Romney delivered an acceptance speech that stretched, massaged, distorted, and flat out violated the truth. Here are the five biggest lies uttered by Romney in Tampa.
1). Mitt Romney Goes Birther
What Romney Said, “Tonight that American flag is still there on the moon. And I don’t doubt for a second that Neil Armstrong’s spirit is still with us: that unique blend of optimism, humility and the utter confidence that when the world needs someone to do the really big stuff, you need an American.”
The Truth: Ah yes, what would a gathering of more than four Republicans be if somebody didn’t suggest in the most sly way that Obama is not American. Romney’s statement can also be viewed as when you need really big stuff done, you need a white man. It was subtle, but it was there. Romney was doing his best Ronald Reagan all-American impression. If Romney is Captain America, then what does that make Barack Obama?
2). Romney Says he Won’t Raise Taxes on the Middle Class
What Romney Said, “Unlike President Obama, I won’t raise taxes on the middle class of America.”
The Truth: Romney’s tax plan is classic trickle down economics. Romney’s tax plan lowers on the top 2% of earners and raises taxes on everyone else. According to the Tax Policy Center, taxes on the middle class would go up by about $2,000 to pay for Romney’s tax cut for the wealthy.
3). Romney Promises to Create 12 Million New Jobs and Claims Obama has no Jobs Plan
What Romney Said, “And unlike the president, I have a plan to create 12 million new jobs.”
The Truth: This is a double whopper on Romney’s part, and one that he is fond of repeating on the campaign trail. First, President Obama does have a plan to create jobs. It’s called the American Jobs Act, and it was killed by congressional Republicans.
The second part of Romney’s lie was a bit more devious. Romney promised to create 12 million new jobs, because he and his campaign know that economic forecasts show that if nothing is done, the economy will create 11.8 on its own. Mitt Romney is suggested that America should elect him because his leadership will be 200,000 jobs better than doing absolutely nothing. That is the kind of leadership that Mitt Romney is promising America.
4). Romney Accuses Obama of Not Creating Jobs, Wanting to Raise Taxes on Small Business, and Assaulting Coal, Oil and Natural Gas
What Romney Said, “His policies have not helped create jobs, they have depressed them. And this I can tell you about where President Obama would take America: His plan to raise taxes on small business won’t add jobs, it will eliminate them; His assault on coal and gas and oil will send energy and manufacturing jobs to China; His trillion dollar cuts to our military will eliminate hundreds of thousands of jobs, and also put our security at greater risk.”
The Truth: This was a triple play of lies. So far Obama has created 4.5 million jobs. Obama’s extension of the Bush tax cuts for everyone but the rich actually cuts taxes for 97% of small businesses. Oil, coal, and natural gas production have all increased under Obama. Coal production is up 0.93%. Oil production is up 5.7%, and natural gas is up 22%.
5). Romney Claims Obama Began his Presidency with an Apology Tour
What Romney Said, “I will begin my presidency with a jobs tour. President Obama began with an apology tour. America, he said, had dictated to other nations. No Mr. President, America has freed other nations from dictators.”
The Truth: This is a huge lie that has been debunked by every fact checker in the United States. It is also one of the Republican Party’s favorite lies about Obama.
As The Washington Post’s Fact Checker put it, “The claim that Obama repeatedly has apologized for the United States is not borne out by the facts, especially if his full quotes are viewed in context. Obama often was trying to draw a rhetorical distinction between his policies and that of President Bush, a common practice when the presidency changes parties. The shift in policies, in fact, might have been more dramatic from Clinton to Bush than from Bush to Obama, given how Obama has largely maintained Bush’s approach to fighting terrorism. In other cases, Obama’s quotes have been selectively trimmed for political purposes. Or they were not much different than sentiments expressed by Bush or his secretary of state. Republicans may certainly disagree with Obama’s handling of foreign policy or particular policies he has pursued, but they should not invent a storyline that does not appear to exist.”
Overall, Romney’s speech was just like everything else we have seen from the Republican nominee. It was long on Obama bashing and lacking a real vision for the future. There were few specifics, sparse details, and the only thing to be gained from his speech that Romney wouldn’t do what Obama did.
The question Romney never answered is why anyone should vote for him?
What Romney will do as president? He won’t tell you. The opening of the speech was designed to humanize Romney and get voters to like him, but stories about getting a church’s pension fund aren’t the kind of thing that connects with voters.
Mitt Romney was going for I feel your pain, but what came out was I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore. A fresh bit of Botox can’t smooth out the wrinkles in this candidate. Mitt Romney came in to Tampa as fatally flawed nominee, and he leaves having addressed none of those flaws.
Romney’s speech will be forgotten by Labor Day, and he will be even further behind in the polls after Obama speaks next Thursday. The under card is finished. Democrats are bringing the star power and the main event is heading to Charlotte.
Update: Edited to correct it’s to its in reason number 3.