10 Rankest Hypocrisies of Mitt Romney and the Republican Party
White House hopeful Mitt Romney, pictured on September 1, joined the latest chorus of criticism launched by fellow Republicans at President Barack Obama on Wednesday, attempting to take the shine off the Democratic convention.
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Modern Republicans give us an opportunity to peer into the soul of a party that has embraced an open aversion to the truth. Meanwhile, their hypocrisy has reached historic proportions. It’s as if they have lost the ability to recognize the obvious contradictions they put forth. Or, more likely, they just don’t care, since lies and hypocrisy are an efficient way to score political points and smear opponents. The hyper-hypocrisy of today’s GOP has spread through the party’s bloodstream. Below is a sampling of the most recent examples of rank right-wing hypocrisy.
1. Romney has promised that his first action on day one of a Romney administration would be to repeal Obama's Affordable Care Act. Of course, he wouldn’t have any authority to do that and attempting to pass legislation in congress would get stopped short in the Democratic-controlled senate. However, he may want to have a discussion with his running mate. It was recently disclosed that Paul Ryan quietly applied for funding for a Wisconsin healthcare clinic in his district. The funds would come entirely from the Affordable Care Act that Ryan and Romney now propose to repeal.
2. In an interview on the Bill Bennett radio show, Mitt Romney lashed out at what he considered to be false ads by a pro-Obama super PAC. In the course of his tirade he lamented that “in the past, when people pointed out that something was inaccurate, why, campaigns pulled the ad.” Romney said this even as he refused to pull his own ads that had been rated “Pants-on-Fire” lies by PolitiFact. Subsequently, the Romney campaign decided to abandon any pretense to honesty and declare that fact-checkers had “jumped the shark,” and that they would no longer “let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.” In other words, we will lie if we feel like it.
3. At the GOP convention in Tampa, Ann Romney gave a keynote speech in which she told women, “You are the best of America. You are the hope of America. There would not be an America without you.” It was a naked attempt to appeal to women voters the GOP is having trouble connecting with. However, beyond her flattery she never uttered a word of support for issues of importance to women. There was no mention of equal pay, gender discrimination in the workplace, parental leave, or child welfare services like healthcare or nutritional programs. The only references she made to education were how fortunate her husband and children were to have the benefit of attending first-rate institutions that most Americans will never see. And the GOP platform strikes a markedly different tone by banning access to family planning services and effectively asserting that women, “the hope of America,” are not competent to make decisions about their own bodies.
4. The comments of GOP senate candidate Todd Akin regarding “legitimate rape” caused a firestorm of criticism from both Democrats and Republicans. Many on the right insisted that Akin withdraw from the Missouri senate race. However, most of the criticism was directed at the harm Akin caused to the GOP’s prospects of winning the seat, rather than to the offensive views he articulated. There was abundant gnashing of teeth over Akin’s stupidity for putting the election at risk. But when it comes to women, the right’s policies are actually a logical conclusion of Akin’s dumb outburst. In fact, Paul Ryan and Akin cosponsored a bill in the House that sought to redefine the term “rape.” Their bill would make federal funds unavailable for victims unless the crime was deemed “forcible,” which would have excluded many assaults that were statutory, incest or under duress.
5. Fox News and Romney have both recently made an issue of legislation in Ohio that would remove early voting availability for all voters except those in the military. The Obama Justice Department challenged the law arguing that every voter should have early access to the polls. Romney and Fox responded by accusing the president of wanting to make it more difficult for soldiers to vote, even though the administration’s position is to make voting easier for everyone. What Romney and Fox did not mention was that their position would have denied early voting to over 900,000 Ohio veterans (in addition to millions of other Ohio residents) who were not included in the GOP’s bill. [Note: An Ohio court just ruled in favor of the administration's position, but the Ohio Secretary of State insisted he would defy the court order to open the polls.]