"Hey, if you guys let me get away with it, I'll keep on lying forever." (Brian Synder/Reuters)
Remember when President Obama slammed Mitt Romney for proposing to eliminate all federal taxes on millionaires? And do you remember how media outlets everywhere took President Obama's statement and reported it as fact, putting it in headlines without noting that Mitt Romney had never proposed any such thing?
Of course you don't remember that, because President Obama never made such an absurd allegation, and if he had, he'd been been pilloried for it. But now that Mitt Romney is doing something similar—falsely accusing President Obama of pledging to raise gas prices—newsrooms are silent about Mitt's mendacity.
Yesterday, Romney said:
BAIER: Governor, obviously, volatility in the Middle East affects oil prices. Do you believe President Obama is to blame for high gas prices?
ROMNEY: Well, there's no question. But when he ran for office, he said he wanted to see gasoline price go up.
If Romney wants to blame President Obama for gas prices, that's one thing. He can make an argument and try to convince people he's right. (Of course, it's worth pointing out that after Super Tuesday he said
the president "can't precisely set the price" of gas and subsequently said
President Obama was only responsible "in part" for the price of gas. It's also worth pointing out that gas prices are still lower than they were in July of 2008 and are increasing despite soaring
domestic oil production.)
But Romney isn't making an argument about the impact of President Obama's policies, Romney is flatly accusing the president of making a pledge he never made, and of working to achieve a goal that he never supported. That's called lying, and as Greg Sargent has repeatedly argued about similar examples, Romney should be called on the carpet for it. But he hasn't been. And that's a problem, because of there's one thing that Mitt Romney has demonstrated he's good at, it's lying. As long as he can get away with doing it with impunity, he will. And why shouldn't he? Political ambition is good, right?
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