Ryan’s speech tonight, analysis by Salon:
Paul Ryan gave a feisty anti-Obama speech that will have fact-checkers working for days. His most brazen lie accused President Obama of “raiding” Medicare by taking the exact same $716 billion that Ryan and the House GOP notoriously voted to slash. It was stunning.
But that’s not all. He attacked Obama for failing to keep open a Janesville GM plant that closed under Bush in 2008. He hit him for a credit-rating downgrade that S&P essentially blamed on GOP intransigence. He claimed that all taxpayers got from the 2009 stimulus was “more debt,” when most got a tax cut (and the stimulus is known to have saved between 1.4 and 3.3 million jobs.) He derided the president for walking away from the Simpson Bowles commission deficit-cutting recommendations when Ryan himself, a commission member, voted against those recommendations.
He blamed Obama for a deficit mostly created by programs he himself voted for – from two wars, tax cuts, new Medicare benefits and TARP.
And of course, he riffed on the tired central lie of the GOP convention: that the president said “government gets the credit” for small businesses, not the business owners themselves.
Ryan was called on the lie two weeks ago when he was blaming the President for the Janesville GM plant closing, but as is the case with today’s Teapublicans, these are not intended to be factual statements:
“I remember President Obama visiting it when he was first running, saying he’ll keep that plant open,” Ryan said during a campaign stop. “One of the reasons that plant got shut down was $4 gasoline. You see, this costs jobs. The president’s terrible energy policies are costing us jobs.”
The attack has already received a fair amount of ridicule because the Janesville, Wis., plant actually closed during the last year of George W. Bush’s presidency. What hasn’t really been emphasized is whether Ryan clearly knew this and made the charge nonetheless.
Candidate Obama’s actual statement issued when he visited the Janesville plant in February, 2008:
“My heart goes out to the workers and families affected by the closing of these GM plants,” he said. “Today’s news is a painful reminder not only of the challenges America faces in our global economy, but of George Bush’s failed economic policies.” He finished by pledging to help domestic automakers “with the funding they need to retool their factories and make fuel-efficient and alternative-fuel cars. And we’ll invest in efforts to make sure that the cars of the future are made where they always have been — in the United States.”
Do you see anything in that statement saying he’ll keep the plant open? Of course not. Just another string of never-ending propaganda by the radical right. Eventually, their base will believe it all and, if they seize power, they’ll follow Texas’ example and rewrite textbooks to show that Obama IS responsible for the Janesville plant closing.