They’re all politicians, regardless of what Mitt Romney wants to call himself. But what does it say of the Romney campaign and the Republican leaders when they chose three major lies to base an entire convention on?
Lie Number 1. – “You Didn’t Build That.”
Those were the words President Obama used at a campaign event. The President was talking about all the different factors that contribute to all successful businesses. But Republicans are only focusing on the you didn’t build that phrase and they are telling their followers that President Obama is against businesses.
“If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you have a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.
Anyone with a hint of common sense can look at that quote and conclude that the President was correct. Somewhere along the line, somebody gave entrepreneurs some help. Yes, business owners formulate a business plan, some invested every dollar they had and put in the long hours. But doing that alone does not make a successful business. It helps to have a proper education and good teachers. It helps when customer have access to a business whether it be through roads, public transportation or the internet. And yes, it helps when there is a system already in place that facilitates the business plan and allows that plan to be successful.
So Republicans can focus on the “you didn’t build it” part of the President’s speech all they want. The facts… the simple facts show that the president is correct.
Lie Number 2. – “Obama increased the deficit by $5 Trillion”
This lie is another example of what Republicans and the Romney campaign is famous for – placing a laser focus on one part of a political argument and enlarging that argument to a point where it becomes the whole story.
Yes, $5 Trillion dollars were added to the deficit under the Obama administration, but that’s not the whole story. For anyone who is genuine and want to know more, the full story is about where this $5 trillion comes from.
Here are the facts on the $5 trillion:
- The George Bush wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were conducted on a credit card. In his infinite wisdom, George Bush did not include these wars in any budget. Mr. Obama on the other hand chose to bring this information to the American people and $853 billion – the price of both Bush wars – were added to the deficit.
- The George Bush Tax Cuts – Another Bush policy that the Bush administration chose not to add to the deficit. In an effort to be transparent President Obama budgeted this cost and $2.2 trillion appeared on the deficit, thanks to Bush.
Other Bush Credit Card Policies – The costs of these Bush policies were also hidden from the American people, and these cost were finally budgeted by the Obama administration:
- Defense – $616 Billion
- Non Defense – $608 Billion
- Entitlements – $293 Billion
- Troubled Assets – $294 Billion
- Prescription Drug costs – $180 Billion
And there you have it. The whole story on the $5 trillion deficit increase, all items from the George Bush-era.
How much did Obama’s policies add to the deficit? According to the chart below, when the expenses and revenues are taken into consideration, the Obama policies adds just about $983 billion. It breaks down like this:
- The Stimulus – $874 Billion
- Extending the Bush Tax Cuts – $620 Billion
- Other mandatory spending – $324 Billion
- Other revenue – $113 Billion
And the Republican’s claim in itself makes no sense. A recent article by MarketWatch details that spending under President Obama is at a 60 year low. How can he “increased the deficit by $5 trillion if he’s not spending? The graph below explains:
In addition to the study by MarketWatch, PolitiFact did their research and agrees – spending is less under Obama. From PolitiFact:
Obama has indeed presided over the slowest growth in spending of any president using raw dollars, and it was the second-slowest if you adjust for inflation. The math simultaneously backs up Nutting’s calculations and demolishes Romney’s contention.
Lie Number 3 – “Obama removed the work requirement in Welfare.”
This particular lie was told (and will be told again and again) by the Republican Vice President candidate Paul Ryan. This lie was, like I’m sure you all know by now, debunked by every respectable fact-checker in the field. But the fact that this lie is already debunked did not stop the vice president candidate and he mentioned it in the biggest speech of his career – his speech to the nation.
The lie is based on a memo from the Obama administration to the states, where the states are granted a waiver from the federal program if they (the states) can show better more effective way to transfer welfare recipients from welfare to better training and work. But unfortunately, many in the Republican base choose fiction over facts and the Romney campaign is feeding this lie to these people.
And now that we’ve come to the end of the Republican convention, what can we really say we’ve learned?
Although a tad more of the Republican candidate was revealed to the American people, it was hard to believe what I was seeing and what I was hearing from the Convention podium. How can we believe anything coming from these Republicans when the very foundation of their Convention was based on lies?