Update ABC, too!
Misleading Romney Ad on Jeeps Draws Obama Retort
A misleading TV ad from Republican nominee Mitt Romney has prompted spirited objections from independent fact-checkers and Democrats for suggesting incorrectly, just days before the election, that automaker Chrysler is moving Jeep production out of Ohio to China.
Note how much work one word – “incorrectly” – can do, in the right place.
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All praise to Jill Lawrence and her editors at National Journal for demonstrating the difference between true objectivity and mere “even-handedness” in handling a story where a candidate tells an untruth:
Romney Ad Wrongly Implies Chrysler is Sending U.S. Jobs to China
The Jeep ad comes after the GOP nominee misinterprets a story about possible new Jeep production in China for Chinese customers.
Republican nominee Mitt Romney is running a new TV ad that implies Chrysler is planning to move U.S. auto jobs to China, though that is not the case.
First you recite the objective fact that the candidate made the claim, and in the same sentence you recite the equally objective fact that the claim is false. No value judgement, no editorializing. Just the facts, ma’am.
But wait! It gets better:
With this ad, Romney is going right at Obamaâ€™s major strength in Ohio: his 2009 bailout of the auto industry that is responsible for some 800,000 jobs in the state.
The ad is correct in saying that Obama took Chrysler and GM into bankruptcy (narration thatâ€™s illustrated with footage of cars being crushed). What the ad doesnâ€™t say is that Obama helped the car companies through the process by providing government loans, which Romney opposed.
Romney, in his famous â€œLet Detroit Go Bankruptâ€ op-ed in The New York Times in 2008, said the companies should be required to rely on private capital until after the bankruptcy. But most analysts agree there was none available in the depths of the recession, and without the bailout the two companies would have likely died â€“possibly taking down with them the supply chain, and Ford.
Again, mere fact. And boy oh boy, does it sting!
If all reporters and editors had this much nerve, lying would be a losing strategy, and candidates would stop doing it.