Saturday October 13, 2012

Mitt Romney and Scott Brown share two basic strategies: They are running away from their party and they are bending the truth with abandon, and think we’ll be too stupid to notice.

During his debate with Presi dent Obama, Mitt Romney poured out such a flood of shifting positions and outright lies that it was almost impossible to keep track -- which was his aim. Here’s a very short list of Romney lies and shifts.

He claimed that, in his health care plan that, "Pre-existing conditions are covered." They are not. (talkingpointsmemo .com). When he said that President Obama had "cut Medicare by $716 billion to pay for Obamacare." Obama didn’t. (These cuts prolong the life of Medicare. factcheck.org) When he denied proposing a $5 trillion tax cut. But he did. (nytimes.com, Oct. 3). When he said President Obama had "added almost as much to the federal debt as all the prior presidents combined." Not even close. (nytimes.com, Oct. 3).

When he resurrected "death panels" that was called "one of the biggest whoppers of the night." (nationaljournal.com). When he stated that half the green energy companies given stimulus funds had failed. Only three failed, out of nearly three dozen. (nytimes.com, Oct. 3).


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And no mention of the Re publican platform or his Republican Party.

Scott Brown, in his first two debates with Elizabeth War ren, displayed a similar strategy. Brown, while avoiding identifying himself with his party, votes down the line with them a large percentage of the time. In his second debate, his aim, like Romney’s, was to appear to be a political centrist who feels strongly on issues, never mind that they are self-contradictory. Here’s a short list of his bending the truth about his Senate votes (huffingtonpost .com, R. Zombeck).

Brown claimed he is "the only one in this race fighting for unions," but voted to filibuster healthcare benefits for 9/11 first responders. Brown also voted against putting teachers and firefighters back to work. Harold Schaitberger, the president of the Inter national Association of Fire fighters, said, "We don’t need Scott Brown, who may look good in his jacket and his blue jeans and his truck, and who wants to be a regular Joe, but who votes against working-class people."

Although trying to pose as independent of his party, Brown, as Warren pointed out, has been telling Republicans around the country to vote for him, so that the GOP can take control of the Senate and block Obama’s agenda.

Brown has voted against three job bills, in line with his party, and voted 16 times against extending unemployment insurance. He claimed that all the job bills would have raised taxes. He had signed the Norquist tax pledge not to raise taxes on the super rich. He had previously argued that he wouldn’t vote for tax cuts for the 98 percent unless taxes were also cut for the 2 percent.

Mitt Romney’s and Scott Brown’s main problem is that they are Republicans, members of a party so far out of the mainstream that its candidates have to lie, shift positions, flip-flop, and hide behind their smoke and mirrors.

Come on, voters, we’re not stupid. We have to vote for the Democratic Party this election.

TELA ZASLOFF

Williamstown