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President Obama in Hilliard, Ohio, earlier Friday, slamming Mitt Romney's for falsely claiming that Chrysler plans to move their jobs to China in an effort to scare Jeep workers—and contrasting Romney's calculated dishonesty with his own record of pushing through his auto industry rescue package even when it was politically risky:

Transcript below the fold.
President Obama made the case that Romney's dishonest Jeep-to-China claim was a character issue. "You don't scare hardworking Americans just to scare up some votes," he said. "That's not what being President is all about. That's not leadership."

The president said that he pushed through his plan to save the auto industry even though it was deeply unpopular because "betting on American ingenuity and know how was right thing to do." Obama asked voters to reward him for taking the political risk that came with his plan, pointing out that while he was working to save the auto industry, Mitt Romney was trying to play it safe by opposing the bailout plan.

President Obama said that unlike Mitt Romney—who he said keeps on trying to to change the facts in order to close his sales pitch—voters know that he can be trusted. "Do you want a president who is actually to tell you what he believes and what he thinks?" Obama asked. "Or somebody who is going to—no—ya know, change the facts?" (That last line, if you watch the video is particularly stellar—he pauses, allowing the crowd to complete his sentence by shouting out Romney is a liar—but avoids using the word himself. It's vintage Obama—nobody is better than he is at getting other people to complete his sentences for him.)

The bottom-line, Obama said, is that he can be trusted. "You know where I stand," he said. "You know I tell the truth." And if voters reelect him: "I’ll fight for you and your families every single day, as hard as I know how."

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Transcript (provided by Obama for America):

And changing the facts when they’re inconvenient to your campaign – well, that’s definitely not change.  But that’s exactly what Governor Romney has been doing these last few weeks.  Right here in Ohio, you’ve folks who work at the Jeep plant who have been calling their employers, worried, asking if their jobs were being shipped to China. And the reason they’re been making these calls is because Governor Romney has been running an ad that says so. Except it’s not true. Everyone knows it’s not true.  The car companies themselves have told Governor Romney to knock it off.  GM said, “we think creating jobs in the United States…should be a source of bipartisan pride.”  And I couldn’t agree more.  

And I understand that Governor Romney has had a tough time here in Ohio because he was against saving the auto industry.  And it’s hard to run away from that position when you’re on videotape saying the words “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt.”  And I know we’re close to an election but this isn’t a game.  These are people’s jobs.  These are people’s lives.  These car companies are put a lot of effort to make great product but also to make sure everybody in America knows how committed they are to making cars here in America. And so you don’t scare hardworking Americans just to scare up some votes.  That’s not what being President is all about.  That’s not leadership.

When I first made the decision to rescue the auto industry, I knew it wasn’t popular. Despite the fact that one out of eight jobs in Ohio are connected to the auto industry in someway, it wasn’t even popular in Ohio.  But I also knew it was the right thing to do.  I knew betting on American workers was the right thing to do.  Betting on American ingenuity and know how was right thing to do.  That bet paid off. It paid off in Lordstown, where GM is investing hundreds of millions of dollars in their auto plant. It paid off in Toledo, where Chrysler is adding more than 1,000 new jobs on a second shift – not in China, right here in Ohio. Right here in the United States of America.

And so one of the things that I hope when you’re talking to your friends and your neighbors, trying to make up their minds these last few days, think about that.  Think about the issue of trust. Do you want a president who is actually to tell you what he believes and what he thinks or somebody who is going to – no – ya know, change the facts.  After four years as President, you know me.  You may not agree with every decision I’ve made.  You may be frustrated sometimes at the pace of change.  But you know what I believe.  You know where I stand.  You know I tell the truth.   And you know that I’ll fight for you and your families every single day, as hard as I know how.  You know that.

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