It isn't that the Romney campaign just outright lied about what the Obama campaign is doing in their Ohio lawsuit over limitations on early voting. That's to be expected from a campaign that speaks Lie as its primary language.
No, what's so annoying about this particular lie is how the press just picked it up and ran with it because, well, it got lots of Facebook "likes" and well, a campaign official said it so it must be so, right?
Witness that bastion of DC insider online media, The Hill, repeating the meme but failing to actually correct it in their opening paragraphs:
Mitt Romney on Saturday said the Obama campaign's lawsuit in Ohio to limit military voters to the same early voting dates as non-military voters was an "outrage."
No, no, no. Nay. I wrote this up forever ago, with links to the actual documents, which the erstwhile reporters at The Hill surely must have access to, no? Because if they did, they would have written that the actual thing that the Obama campaign is doing is seeking to EXPAND early voting to everyone, not limit military voters.
As expected, the Romney campaign Etch-a-Sketched it to feed some red meat to the base, because limiting poor women voters is totally okay, but please, never ever say we would limit military voters. One of these things is not like the other. Not at all.
Here's where it gets really funny, though. Look what The Hill reports next as evidence -- proof positive, ladies and gentlemen -- that Romney is getting some traction on his lies.
Romney’s statement received a great deal of traction online — it had more than 10,000 "likes" on Facebook within an hour of being posted.
Hot diddly damn, folks. A national candidate posts a lie on Facebook and gets 10,000 "likes" in an hour and therefore has "traction." Forget about whether or not they game social media. (Yes, they do. Routinely.) After all, Sarah Palin has something like 3.5 million users that "like" her too. Says more about them than it does about her. It's not a huge thing to get people to click the little "likey" thing next to a post.
Now, I should mention that The Hill does get around to saying what the Obama campaign is actually trying to do farther down in their article, but they play the "yeahbut" game with that. They say in one sentence that OFA's lawsuit is intended to expand access to early voting, and in the next, say yeah, but the optics could be bad for the campaign.
How does that work, exactly? The only way the optics are bad is if the reporting is bad. And you know the reporting is bad when even right wing bloggers like Ed Morrissey are calling Romney out on the lie.
We are 90+ days out from a national election that will determine the shape of the Supreme Court for a generation and which also serves as a proxy battle against the oligarchs. Is it too much to ask for political reporters to take a moment and actually, you know, fact check claims of a campaign with much to gain by lying about the other guy?
Evidently the answer to that question is yes. Josh Marshall is right.
The whole episode is tailor made to expose how corrupted the press corps is. The entire thing is a demonstrable lie, and all in the service of service of keeping vote participation as low as possible. In other words, a Fehrnstrom Special. Very curious to see whether the biggs report it as such.
Just for the record, it appears that Romney only likes some veterans. Ones who disagree with him and exercise their right to free speech by wearing t-shirts which are not obscene but run counter to his message get tossed from his campaign events, like this one in South Carolina: