Speaking in Florida Wednesday, Vice President Biden said of Chrysler and GM, “They don’t want to get involved in presidential politics, but they spoke up. They called it, quote – I’m going to quote – “a leap that would be difficult even for professional circus acrobats.” That’s the quote. I wouldn’t call these guys acrobats, I’d call them contortionists.”
The American people, the Vice President said, want a President they can trust, and they know Romney doesn’t pass that test.
VICE PRESIDENT BIDEN’S PARTIAL REMARKS:
Ladies and gentlemen, the President of the United States rescued the automobile industry, saving one million jobs, creating 200,000 new jobs, good paying jobs you can raise a family on. GM is back. Chrysler is the fastest growing automaker in the world. And what’s happened? What’s Ryan’s and Romney’s response. Desperation. Desperation.
In the last hours of this campaign – I just came from Ohio – in the last hours of this campaign, if you can believe it, they’re running the most scurrilous ad in Ohio, and I mean this, I want you to listen – one of the most flagrantly dishonest ads I can ever remember in my political career. In the ad they’re running in Ohio, they said that President Obama forced Chrysler into bankruptcy – I’m paraphrasing, but they said – so quote – I don’t what they have against Italians – so the Italians could take over Chrysler and ship Jeep manufacturing to China. That’s what the ad says. That’s what the a says. It’s an outrageous lie, a lie that’s so deceptive and so patently untrue that the Chrysler Corporation, including the chairman of the board of Chrysler, they actually spoke up. They don’t want to get involved in presidential politics, but they spoke up. They called it, quote – I’m going to quote – “a leap that would be difficult even for professional circus acrobats.” That’s the quote. I wouldn’t call these guys acrobats, I’d call them contortionists…
Ladies and gentlemen, GM’s response to the false assertions these guys are coming up with in the last waning moments of the campaign – I love this quote – they said, quote, “they must be in a parallel universe.” That’s a quote from GM. GM went on to say, they called it campaign – this is a quote – “campaign politics at its cynical worst.” Have you ever heard an American corporation do that? In all my time, I’ve never heard an American corporation in the waning hours of a campaign give that kind of description of what a presidential candidate’s doing. That’s the best description of the cynical worst that I’ve heard of the Ryan-Romney ticket, the Romney-Ryan ticket, in this campaign…
Look, why would they do this? Why would they do this in the face of overwhelming facts contradicting them? I’ll tell you why I think: they’re trying to scare the living devil out of a group of people who have been hurt so badly over the last, the previous four years before we came to office. The last year before we were sworn in they lost 400,000 auto jobs. My state of Delaware was decimated. It had seen both its Chrysler and its General Motors plants close. Those folks in Ohio, in Lorrain and Toledo, they lost, some of them lost their homes after they lost their jobs. They lost – they’re back on their feet, they’re back. But they still feel the sting of what happened four years ago.
Because they’re running those ads in the very communities that were decimated by those policies, communities that had the most at stake in the automobile industry, these are the workers waking up in their communities just to see this ad. And guess what? They were calling, thousands of them calling their UAW reps. “Is it true? Is it true? Is Jeep really going to leave?” It’s the announcement they made, “Are you going to shut down our plant?” What a cynical, cynical thing to do…
Folks, I’ve not seen anything like this. Folks, the president’s job is not to sow confusion, it’s to plant the seeds of confidence. You’ve probably heard me say it before and I’ll say it again, presidential elections are overwhelmingly about character. They’re overwhelmingly about the character of [inaudible]. Character, character, character. It’s the most impressive trait and necessary trait a president must possess to lead the nation and the incredible people that we are. And my guy, your guy, Barack Obama has character. He’s got backbone like a ramrod. He has the character of his convictions. He does not engage in deception. He does not mislead. He says what he means and he stands by what he says.
And that’s one thing his opponent has not done. He has not stood by anything he has said. So ask yourself in this election, who do you trust? Who do you trust to be straight with you? To level with you? Who do you trust to stand up for the middle class? Who do you trust to stand up for America? Ladies and gentlemen, America does [inaudible]. We are not in decline, they are in denial.
I’d fact check this for you AGAIN, but I’ve spent days linking to reality. It is an established fact that the Romney campaign is guilty of an absurd lie. But facts are apparently now a partisan issue due to Romney’s refusal to be dictated to by them. Here’s the newsflash: Biden told the truth. Romney lied again. Romney scared voters in Ohio and smeared Chrysler and GM because it’s what he does.
It’s not fair to mislead the American people about the fundamentals of who you are. Romney was against the auto bailout and he should take the hits for his position. He obviously felt strongly enough about it to gloat about it endlessly during the crisis and right up until after polls showed him losing Ohio.
The truth is that the Romney campaign jumped the fact shark a long time ago, and he’s not playing typical spin politics — he’s destroying the credibility of the election process with lies so huge they bear no relationship to reality. The Obama campaign focuses on reality that speaks well of their choices, they spin the take on reality to advance Democratic beliefs, but they do not cheerfully attack with utter falsehoods and refuse to tweak their claims when hit by factcheckers (whose own inability to see Romney’s lies in their consistent arc rather than piece by piece is a problem).
These two campaigns aren’t playing the same game at all. One is politics and the other is a circus act of deliberately deceptive contortions.
CHICAGO points out the reason for Romney’s lies, “As Mitt Romney’s path to 270 becomes further out of reach, his attacks get further from the truth… As Vice President Biden asked Floridians this morning, why should voters trust someone who will say absolutely anything to get elected, even when he knows it’s dishonest?”
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.