Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Romney Pollster: "Our Campaign" Won't "Be Dictated By Fact Checkers"

The Romney campaign has been running a false ad claiming that President Obama removed the work requirement from the 1996 welfare reform law. The ad has been debunked by the Washington Post's fact checker, which "awarded" it "four Pinocchios," and Politifact, which rated it "Pants on Fire." Even Newt Gingrich told Anderson Cooper that there's "no proof" for the attack.

The administration actually granted waivers to the states, allowing them more latitude in transitioning welfare recipients to work. Romney, in fact, was among 29 Republican governors who signed a 2005 letter to congressional leadership supporting such waivers. Regardless, Romney pollster Neil Newhouse stated in response to questions about the ad's veracity, "Fact checkers come to this with their own sets of thoughts and beliefs, and we’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers."

Additionally, NPR asked Romney political director Rich Beeson about the truthfulness of the ad and received glib answers:

STEVE INSKEEP (NPR): Doesn’t the change mean that the governors can choose or can apply to change the work requirement as opposed to being forced to remove it?

BEESON: Again, that still is a change.

INSKEEP: But it’s not, quote, ‘they just send you your check,’ which is what the ad says.

BEESON: (laughs) I think reasonable people can have a disagreement over this, but he [Obama] has significantly changed what President Clinton put in in 1996.

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