Dylan Matthews identifies some truths and some (more) lies in Paul Ryan’s convention speech. But it’s the sheer chutzpah of the stuff in the ‘misleading’ category that astonishes.
“[Obama] created a bipartisan debt commission. They came back with an urgent report,” Ryan stated. “He thanked them, sent them on their way, and then did exactly nothing.” But the bipartisan debt commission itself didn’t come back with a report. There were not enough votes to agree upon recommendations, in part due to opposition from committee member, er, Paul Ryan…
Paul Ryan said in his speech that Obama’s presidency “began with a perfect Triple-A credit rating for the United States; it ends with a downgraded America.” This implies that Obama was responsible for Standard and Poor’s downgrading of U.S. debt. That is false. In its report announcing the downgrade, S&P was clear that blame rested with House Republicans for making the debt ceiling increase conditional on deficit reduction.
“The political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we see as America’s governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective,and less predictable than what we previously believed,” the report reads. “The statutory debt ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in the debate over fiscal policy.” It also faults Congressional Republicans for “continu[ing[ to resist any measure that would raise revenues.”
Politicians lie, and Republicans lie most of all; this isn’t news. But this kind of ludicrous, transparent sophistry - slamming your opponent for things you did - used, I’m sure, to be limited to Fox News and not keynote speeches at the convention. But how can Ryan be honest, when his vision for Government is completely different to (a) Mitt Romney’s and (b) most of America’s?