This is what happens when one side tries to accomodate the other, especially when the other side is known for their dishonest, brutish ways. Reince Preibus and his merry gang of Republicans have no problem airing an ad suggesting that President Obama eliminated the work requirements for welfare all by himself. Based upon the wording and images in the ad, the underlying suggestion is that he's cutting lazy people of color some slack.
Steve Benen blasted Romney's dishonesty this morning:
Romney's lying. He's not spinning the truth to his advantage; he's not hiding in a gray area between fact and fiction; he's just lying. The law hasn't been "gutted"; the work requirementhasn't been "dropped." Stations that air this ad are disseminating an obvious, demonstrable lie.
All Obama did is agree to Republican governors' request for flexibility. That's it. Indeed, perhaps the most jaw-dropping aspect of this is that Romney himself, during his one gubernatorial term, asked for the same kind of flexibility on welfare law that Obama agreed to last month. Romney, in other words, is attacking the president for doing what Romney asked the executive branch to do in 2005.
The entire line of attack is simply insane.And that brings us back to the test for the political world.
How are we to respond to a campaign that deliberately deceives the public without shame? This lie about welfare policy comes on the heels of Romney's lie about voting rights in Ohio, which came on the heels of Romney's lies about the economy; which came on the heels of Romney's lies about health care; which came on the heels of Romney's lies about taxes.
The Republican nominee for president is working under the assumption that he can make transparently false claims, in writing and in campaign advertising, with impunity. Romney is convinced that there are no consequences for breathtaking dishonesty.
The test, then, comes down to a simple question: is he right?
I fear he might be. It seems that the language of lies is one that gains traction in today's world, thanks to Fox News, who serves as the lie amplifier. Free speech and all that, you know.
Facts are facts, unless it's political. Then Fox makes sure it creates a new set of facts, ignoring reality. Fox viewers don't care. They just want to hear what they want to hear, regardless of whether it's true. In this case, they are smug about the uppity black guy giving lazy people a reason to suck off the government teat. Never mind that it's a lie, or that their guy actually requested that which the President granted. They just lie, because they know Fox will enable them to get away with it.
Which sitting Republican governor will stand up and tell Fox News they're lying?