Paul Ryan‘s speech at the Republican National Convention last night was filled with “blatant lies and misrepresentations” according to an op-ed in Fox News, the all-but-official news agency of the GOP. That’s pretty shocking, since Fox News serves as the Republican paper of record.
Sally Kohn, who, granted, leans left, writes, “to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryanâ€™s speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech. On this measure, while it was Romney who ran the Olympics, Ryan earned the gold.”
The good news is that the Romney-Ryan campaign has likely created dozens of new jobs among the legions of additional fact checkers that media outlets are rushing to hire to sift through the mountain of cow dung that flowed from Ryanâ€™s mouth. Said fact checkers have already condemned certain arguments that Ryan still irresponsibly repeated.
Fact: While Ryan tried to pin the downgrade of the United Statesâ€™ credit rating on spending under President Obama, the credit rating was actually downgraded becauseÂ Republicans threatened not to raise the debt ceiling.
Fact: While Ryan blamed President Obama for the shut down of a GM plant in Janesville, Wisconsin, theÂ plant was actually closed under President George W. Bush. Ryan actually asked for federal spending to save the plant, while Romney has criticized the auto industry bailout that President Obama ultimately enacted to prevent other plants from closing.
Fact: Though Ryan insisted that President Obama wants to give all the credit for private sector success to government, that isn’t what the president said. Period.
Fact: Though Paul Ryan accused President Obama of taking $716 billion out of Medicare,Â the factÂ is that that amount was savings in Medicare reimbursement rates (which, incidentally, save Medicare recipients out-of-pocket costs, too) andÂ Ryan himself embraced these savings in his budget plan.
Elections should be about competing based on your record in the past and your vision for the future, not competing to see who can get away with the most lies and distortions without voters noticing or bother to care. Both parties should hold themselves to that standard. Republicans should be ashamed that there was even one misrepresentation in Ryanâ€™s speech but sadly, there were many.
Kohn at Fox News is far from the only one calling Paul Ryan a liar.
David WeigelÂ at Slate writes that Ryan’s speech was “one of the more impressive strings of whoppers we’ve seen at this level.” Weigel offers five lies. Excerpts:
The GM plant in Janesville.
“The stimulus was a case of political patronage, corporate welfare, and cronyism at their worst.”
“$716 billion, funneled out of Medicare by President Obama.”Â Not really true, either. The Medicare spending “cuts” are of the sort that Ryan defended when he was rising through the Houseâ€”reductions in future reimbursement rates.
“A downgraded America.”
The “bipartisan debt commission” Ryan referred to was Simpson-Bowles. He served on it, and voted against the report, because it didn’t tackle Medicare costsâ€”which sort of brings us back to the “$716 billion funneling” issue.
Joan Walsh at Salon, in “Paul Ryanâ€™s brazen lies,” says Ryan’s “speech was stunning for its dishonesty,” and adds that Ryan, “blamed Obama for a deficit mostly created by programs he himself voted for â€“ from two wars, tax cuts, new Medicare benefits and TARP.”
Interestingly, for all his lies, Ryan didnâ€™t repeat the Romney campâ€™s false claim that Obama did away with the welfare systemâ€™s work requirements. Maybe he ran out of time.
Ryan got off a few good zingers: â€œCollege grads shouldnâ€™t have to live out their 20s in childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters.â€ He didnâ€™t mention that he opposed legislation to keep student loan rates from doubling. His remarks about his childhood were slightly moving. He talked about losing his father at 16, and he called his mother, who went back to school and to work after that, his role model. But he never mentioned the Social Security death benefits that let him go to an out-of-state school. Occasionally he seemed to be going after swing voters, rather than his hard-right base, taking a more in sorrow than anger tone about Obamaâ€™s failings. Then heâ€™d mix things up with nastiness and lies.
And when Ryan riffed on the handful of jobs he briefly held, his Ayn Randian roots were clear. â€œWhen I was waiting tables, washing dishes, or mowing lawns for money, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life, he said. [Perhaps that’s because he wasn’t; he grew up in a wealthy family.] I was on my own path, my own journey, an American journey where I could think for myself, decide for myself, define happiness for myself. Thatâ€™s what we do in this country. Thatâ€™s the American Dream. Thatâ€™s freedom, and Iâ€™ll take it any day over the supervision and sanctimony of the central planners.â€ Thatâ€™s straight out of [Ayn] Rand, and â€™50s anti-Communist paranoia.
Jonathan Cohn at The New Republic: “The Most Dishonest Convention Speech … Ever?”
Ruth Conniff at The Progressive: “Paul Ryan’s Brilliant, Scary, Lying Speech”
Ryan Grim at The Huffington Post: “Paul Ryan Address: Convention Speech Built On Demonstrably Misleading Assertions”
Image via Twitter by Cecilia Vega
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‘I’m Broke’: One Day Before Shutdown and With No Plan McCarthy Says He Has ‘Nothing’ in His ‘Back Pocket’
Just 30 hours before his own Republican conference likely will have succeeded in shutting down the federal government of the United States, Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy candidly admitted to reporters he’s run out of ideas.
Earlier Friday in an “embarrassing failure,” 21 House Republicans killed legislation from their own party, a short-term continuing resolution, that would have kept the federal government open.
Later on Friday afternoon, swarmed by reporters, McCarthy was asked if he was going to tell them what his plans are. He sarcastically replied, “No, I’m going to keep it all a secret.”
When pressed, he said he would “keep working, and make sure we solve this problem.”
“What’s in your back pocket, Speaker?” another reporter asked, pressing him for an answer.
“Nothing right now. I’m broke,” he admitted, apparently referring to options and ideas to avoid a shutdown.
But another reporter asked Speaker McCarthy the main question: Would he partner with House Democratic Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries to put the Senate’s bill before the House.
He refused to answer.
After Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) failed House vote to keep the federal government open…
Reporter: “What’s in your back pocket, Speaker?”
McCarthy: “Nothing right now. I’m broke.” pic.twitter.com/pB2SWhOSVr
— The Recount (@therecount) September 29, 2023
Just before 5 PM CNN’s Manu Raju reported on the ongoing House Republicans’ closed-door meeting with the Speaker, a meeting where the 21 Republicans who will likely be effectively responsible for the shutdown reportedly did not attend.
“McCarthy is telling [Republicans] now there aren’t many options to avoid a shutdown, according to sources in room. He says they can approve GOP’s stop-gap plan that failed, accept Senate plan, put a ‘clean’ stop-gap on floor to dare Democrats to block it — or shut down the government.”
He adds, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) largely responsible for the impending likely shutdown and the impending possible ouster of McCarthy said: “We will not pass a continuing resolution on terms that continue America’s decline.”
At midnight Saturday Republicans will likely have succeeded in furloughing 3.5 million million federal workers – two million of them service members in the U.S. Armed Forces – and countless contractors, while financially harming untold thousands of businesses that rely on income from all those workers to keep running – unless Speaker McCarthy puts a bipartisan continuing resolution approved by at least 75 U.S. Senators on the floor, legislation every House Democrat is likely to vote for.
Should he do so, many believe he will have also signed his own pink slip.
But whether or not the government shuts down, and whether or not McCarthy puts the Senate’s CR on the floor, according to The Washington Post the far right extremists in his party are already moving to oust him “as early as next week.”
The Biden campaign is making certain Americans realize the blame for the impending shutdown sits at McCarthy’s feet.
Here is Kevin McCarthy a few months ago praising the deal he made with President Biden to avert a government shutdown, which he is now reneging on pic.twitter.com/B4rVNzNXkZ
— Biden-Harris HQ (@BidenHQ) September 29, 2023
At 6:23 PM Friday evening, Punchbowl News’ Jake Sherman wrote on social media: “HOUSE REPUBLICANS HAVE NO PLAN TO KEEP GOVERNMENT OPEN.”
Watch the videos above or at this link.
‘Bad News’ for Sidney Powell as First Trump Co-Defendant in Georgia RICO Case Takes Plea Deal: Legal Expert
“Under the terms of an agreement with Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’s office, Hall pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to commit election fraud, conspiracy to commit computer theft, conspiracy to commit computer trespass, conspiracy to commit computer invasion of privacy, and conspiracy to defraud the state,” NBC News reports. “Under the terms of the deal, he’s being sentenced to five years probation.”
CNN previously reported “Hall, a bail bondsman and pro-Trump poll-watcher in Atlanta, spent hours inside a restricted area of the Coffee County elections office when voting systems were breached in January 2021. The breach was connected to efforts by pro-Trump conspiracy theorists to find voter fraud. Hall was captured on surveillance video at the office, on the day of the breach. He testified before the grand jury in Fulton County case and acknowledged that he gained access to a voting machine.”
Former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, a professor of law and frequent MSNBC contributor, says Hall “was in the thick of things with Sidney Powell on Jan 7 for the Coffee County scheme involving voting machines. If he’s cooperating, it’s a bad sign for her.”
Hall’s plea deal “spells bad news for, among others, Sidney Powell,” says former Dept. of Defense Special Counsel Ryan Goodman, an NYU Law professor of law. Goodman posted a graphic showing the overlap in charges against Hall and Powell, which he called “alleged joint actions.”
With breakthrough for Georgia DA (@TamarHallerman reporting: “SCOTT HALL has become the first co-defendant in the Fulton election interference case to take a plea deal with prosecutors.”)
That spells bad news for, among others, Sidney Powell.
Example of alleged joint actions.👇 pic.twitter.com/odMM5C7JtX
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) September 29, 2023
See the graphic above or at this link.
Far-Right Republicans Kill GOP Bill to Keep Government Running in ‘Embarrassing Failure’ for McCarthy: Report
With a shutdown less than 36 hours away, far-right Republicans in the House of Representatives Friday afternoon voted against their party’s own legislation to kept the federal government running. Democrats opposed the content of the bill and voted against it. Just 21 far-right members of the GOP conference were able to effectively force what appears to be an all but inevitable shutdown at midnight on Saturday.
“HARDLINE HOUSE RS take down stopgap funding bill. 21 GOP no votes. 232-198,” reported Punchbowl News’ Jake Sherman just before 2 PM Friday.
NBC News reported that a “band of conservative rebels on Friday revolted and blocked House Republicans’ short-term funding bill to keep the government open, delivering a political blow to Speaker Kevin McCarthy and likely cementing the chances of a painful government shutdown that is less than 48 hours away.”
“Twenty-one rebels, led by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., a conservative bomb-thrower and a top Donald Trump ally, voted Friday afternoon to scuttle the 30-day funding bill, known as a continuing resolution or CR, leaving Republicans without a game plan to avert a shutdown. The vote failed,” NBC added. “The embarrassing failure of the GOP measure once again highlights the dilemma for McCarthy as his hard-liners strongly oppose a short-term bill even if it includes conservative priorities. It leaves Congress on a path to a shutdown, with no apparent offramp to avoiding it — or to quickly reopen the government.”
A bipartisan group of at least 75 U.S. Senators has passed two bills this week that would keep the government running. Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy has refused to allow it to come to the floor for a vote.
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