Unpatriotic Mitt: “America’s just another nation with a flag”

In exactly the same sense that Barack Obama said “If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.”

Yes, that’s what he said:

He also called for raising taxes and denounced fiscal responsibility as “heartless and immoral.”

Well, not perzackly. Only in the sense that Barack Obama said “If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.” Here’s the original Romney ad.

Sauce, goose, gander.

The Stepford Husband is really and truly a most appalling and shameless liar. And unapologetic:  when his campaign was confronted with the dishonesty of showing Obama quoting McCain as if he were speaking in his own voice, Romney’s flack admitted the facts and justified the tactic.


Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

19 thoughts on “Unpatriotic Mitt: “America’s just another nation with a flag””

  1. A good strategy would be for a journalist to ask one of the other Republican candidates to react to these statements by Romney. Someone’s going to go for the kill, and I’d like to see how Romney will respond.

  2. Has Mark become officially part of the Obama propaganda machine? No matter.

    Regarding the misrepresentation in the ad, if I were Romney, I’d recall it and re-edit it to remove the offending quote. The ad is just as effective without it.

    As for misrepresentations, Romney could never approach Obama and his flacks, who misrepresent GOP positions daily, perhaps hourly. By this time, virtually half of the country has turned Obama completely off, they’re not even paying attention to him, and they don’t believe a word he says. This is why polls show him trailing the “unnamed” Republican opponent. It is also why the GOP candidate with the fewest negatives for the general election (Romney) will be the nominee, since Party members, for all the fun they are having now with the debates, caucuses, and the “non-Romney” candidate of the week, just want to win.

    By the way, the Obama quote is itself a misrepresentation, in context. He said he was quoting McCain when actually he was quoting an off-hand comment by a McCain aide. Not that the mainstream media would ever call Obama on it. But Conservative talk radio is having a field day concerning this coverage, and it is ironically firming support among conservatives for Romney.

    1. And just how do you quantify “virtually half?” And, if quantified, is there a correlation between such a figure and those suffering from Deranged Obama Syndrome (DOS). And, then compare the quantity of DOS with those who are POS! And, presto, we get the NASCAR circuit! Thanks for speaking on their behalf Redwave72.

      1. Virtually half? As in 50%. Ok so there are still some undecided’s around, so it’s 40-40 with about 20% on the fence. Traditionally undecided’s break against incumbents. Bad math for the “Skinny O.”

        Here are some things political insiders from all sides of the spectrum pretty much agree on. The country is pretty much evenly divided between liberals and conservatives. Those in the middle (i.e. independents) decide national elections. They broke for Obama in 2008 and the result was predictable.

        In 2000 and 2004, the elections were statistical ties. That’s what we should expect all things being equal. However, if the popular vote is a tie, the electoral vote may go the GOP way since the large blue states tend to go very big for Dems. That leaves the GOP winning more squeakers in the purple states. Dems should not feel comfortable unless Obama is at least 2-3 points up in the polls just prior to election.

        But if 40% or more aren’t even listening to him anymore, maybe the Dems need to push him aside for Hillary, as a couple of Democratic insiders suggested in the WSJ the other day.

        Now that’s reality!

        1. You really take Fox News Democrats Schoen and Caddell seriously? I’m only surpriseed the WSJ didn’t solicit the views of “Democratic insiders” Zell Miller, Ben Nighthorse Campbell, and Joe Lieberman.

    2. I recall hearing Obama say he was quoting the McCain campaign, not the man.
      Could that statement have been made around the time McCain declared an emergency halt to campaigning and flew to Washington as a campaign stunt?

  3. Conservative talk radio is having a field day concerning this coverage, and it is ironically firming support among conservatives for Romney.

    Your analysis would be helped if you were to sync with reality every now and then:

    It is also why the GOP candidate with the fewest negatives for the general election (Romney) will be the nominee, since Party members, for all the fun they are having now with the debates, caucuses, and the “non-Romney” candidate of the week, just want to win.

    A shorter redwave:

    Mainstream America finds the ideas of arch conservatism toxic, so we’ll give the nomination to a chameleon from New Manchuria.

    All of which reminds me of what I thought was the most memorable paragraph in Nate Silver’s “Is Obama Toast?” piece:

    Second, the overall unpopularity of the Republican Party could rub off on Romney, who will have to endorse most of its platform. Only 35 or 40 percent of voters take a favorable view of the G.O.P., which has not improved at all from 2006 or 2008. The Republicans in Congress are less popular still and have an agenda with some prickly bits — like Paul Ryan’s plans to privatize Social Security — that Romney could have a hard time distancing himself from.

    So not only does a high majority of Americans find Republican orthodoxy toxic, the 1% is going to have to sell their anti-99% crap using a pump-and-dump Wall Street chameleon who everyone recognizes as a blatant opportunist. Nate Silver thinks Vox Right can manage that. It will be a heck of a con if they do.

    1. It’s nice to see Newt get his day in the sun. He’s earned it. But he won’t be the nominee.

      Unfortunately, the link you provided was not responsive to my comment about conservative talk radio – or even conservatives. You quoted a Quinnipiac (Quinnipiac? get serious) poll of a cross section of voters, not conservatives. In fact, if you listened to Mark Lavin last night (and I’m sure he qualifies as a conservative – everyone at this site must really hate him), you would have heard him come to Mitt’s defense, probably for the first time in the campaign. As the campaign actually starts to become serious, we will see the right unify behind an electable candidate.

      As for the numbers you quote from 2006 and 2008, I’ll buy them – they were lousy GOP years. I guess 2010, since it didn’t fit with your world view, did not make it to the memory banks. Don’t worry. You’re getting another chance. 2012 is likely to make 2010 look like a walk in the park.

      1. Bucky,

        Quinnipiac U has been doing responsible public opinion polling since 1994. They have a much better track record than, oh, say… Rasmussen, to name one you probably like.

        Oh, and in case you haven’t noticed, elections are decided by the electorate, not by conservatives. Do you really think it’s a good thing (for Romney) that only 2/5ths of the electorate have a positive view of the GOP?

  4. Yes, Redwave, if you were Romney you’d recall the ad. But since in fact Romney is Romney, he’s doubling down on his lie.

    Of course your accusation that Barack Obama was lying is itself a gross terminological inexactitude. He did not in fact say that McCain had made the remark about the economy. What he said – and was correct in saying – was, “Senator McCain’s campaign actually said, and I quote, ‘If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.’”

    If you have any integrity whatever, you will acknowledge your error and apologize to the President you falsely vilified and to RBC readers for your attempt to mislead them. But of course I’m not holding my breath.

    1. No, don’t hold your breath – there will be no apology. I’m not going to go through the litany – we have had almost four years of it counting the campaign – and I don’t expect to persuade anyone on this site. Obama does throw the GOP off when he does tell the truth, because it’s so rare and unexpected. But there is always a political angle, no matter what he says. So when he checks out, like he did (yet again) on the Super Committee, who really cares?

      However, I would direct your attention to the interesting op ed that appeared in the WSJ the other day written by two veteran Democrat insiders, virtually begging for Obama to step aside and allow Hillary Clinton to run. Now THAT would be a real nightmare for the GOP – she would be very difficult to beat. On the other hand, she would be a lot better President than the current incumbent.

      1. Schoen and Caddell are Democratic insiders to the same extent that Jacob Javits and Nelson Rockefeller would be today. A myth gets no credence by repetition.

          1. Schoen and Caddell were fringe Clinton campaign advisers–and one reason she lost the primary. Their political acumen is not even quite equal to another pair of one-time HRC advisers–Penn and Morris. In fact, they share the shop with Penn, who never quite came on-board with Obama.

      2. Redwave, you can have the decency to say ‘yes, the original ad accurately attributed the campaign, not McCain himself.’
        It’s not hard. You may still complain that the ad was misleading, etc. Nobody is going to doc your pay because you correct your own misstatement.

  5. The biggest worry the GOP base has about Romney is whether he has any scruples. The ad is an attempt to allay their concerns. Is Mitt secretly a decent man? Don’t worry, the ad says, even if he is, he can act indecently with the best of them. And the attacks from “liberals” accusing him of lying are icing on the cake.

  6. I can see the “Skinny O” making his OWN ad just like the one above……..and tagging to the end of it the little blurb where Romney recently said that what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander (he himself has excused the ad now)………..then again maybe not! Democrats never fight this way. I cry.

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