And he got pounded for (at best) "stretching the truth" when it was said he claimed to have invented the Internet claimed to have been the model for Oliver Barrett in the novel Love Story.
Too bad he never claimed to have "invented" the Internet, only claimed to have pushed for it early on in Congress (he could have been a little clearer, though). And in fact he was the model (actually one of two models) for Oliver Barrett. And who said so? Eric Segal, the author of the novel.
I wonder, now, what the main stream media will make of a Republican who actually did stretch the truth (i.e. LIE)?
I turn now to Governor Mitt Romney's current lie: that he "saw" his father march with the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King.
The story starts up in Boston (or BAH-sten, as the locals up-ere would say):
What discriminatory past? I think that has to be addressed first. Here's Lawrence O'Donnell from the HuffingtonPost:
In the most-watched speech of his political career, speaking on “Faith in America” at College Station, Texas, earlier this month, Mitt Romney evoked the strongest of all symbolic claims to civil-rights credentials: “I saw my father march with Martin Luther King.”
He has repeated the claim several times recently, most prominently to Tim Russert on Meet the Press . But, while the late George W. Romney, a four-term governor of Michigan, can lay claim to a strong record on civil rights, the Phoenix can find no evidence that the senior Romney actually marched with King, nor anything in the public record suggesting that he ever claimed to do so.
Nor did Mitt Romney ever previously claim that this took place, until long after his father passed away in 1995 — not even when defending accusations of the Mormon church’s discriminatory past during his 1994 Senate campaign.
O'Donnell goes on:
The pundits had no idea how deliberately misleading Romney's speech was. They loved the bit about Romney's father marching with Martin Luther King. None of them knew that if at the end of the march with George Romney, Martin Luther King was so taken with Mormonism that he wanted to convert and become a Mormon priest, George Romney would have had to tell him that they don't allow black priests. George Romney might also have had to explain to the Reverend King that Mormons believe black people have black skin because they turned away from God.
I give you the words of the holy Book of Mormon:
"And I beheld, after they had dwindled in unbelief they became a dark and loathsome and a filthy people, full of idleness and all manner of abominations."
Brigham Young, the most revered president of the Mormon Church, who marched his people all the way to the Utah territory because he so vehemently hated the laws of the United States, taught that sex with black people would kill white people. Instantly.
"Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so."
It took the Mormons ten years after Martin Luther King was killed--ten years--to decide to allow black men to be priests.The faith of Romney's fathers.
Anyway, back to Romney seeing his father march with Martin Luther King. This is what he said to Russert:
I'm very proud of my faith, and it's the faith of my fathers, and I certainly believe that it is a, a faith--well, it's true and I love my faith. And I'm not going to distance myself in any way from my faith. But you can see what I believed and what my family believed by looking at, at our lives. My dad marched with Martin Luther King. [emphasis in original]In all fairness, I should add that Romney does say that he was anxious to see a change in his church and that he wept when he heard that his church was changing in regards to race. Didn't say it was ten years later, though.
So two statements: "I saw my father march with Dr Martin Luther King." and "My dad marched with Martin Luther King."
Now are those statements true? Turns out that's a NO. Not only is there no evidence to show that Romney's father, George Romney - who had a solid reputation, strong record for Civil Rights, never marched with King.
When initially asked, the campaign said the march occurred in Grosse Point, Michigan. Too bad there was never a march by Dr. King in Grosse Point. And Romney never marched their either. King did deliver a speech at Grosse Point High school, on March 14 1968.
If that was the event, then Mitt Romney could not have seen it, as he was doing missionary work in Europe for his church.
So, no march attended by both King and the elder Romney. And Romney himself was away for 2 1/2 years (from the last half of 1966 to the end of 1968 - geez, he missed all the good stuff!).
The campaign, of course, is back-pedalling furiously:
"He was speaking figuratively, not literally," Eric Fehrnstrom, spokesman for the Romney campaign, said of the candidate.Right.
And then there's this update at the Phoenix:
So I guess it depends on the meaning of "saw" is.
A spokesperson for Mitt Romney now tells the Phoenix that George W. Romney and Martin Luther King Jr. marched together in June, 1963 -- although possibly not on the same day or in the same city.
Romney, according to one piece of written source material provided by the campaign, made a “surprise” appearance at a small march in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, in late June -- several days after King led a much larger march in Detroit.
Romney spokesperson Eric Fehrnstrom suggests that these two were part of the same “series” of events, co-sponsored by King and the NAACP, and is thus consistent with Romney’s claim that “I saw my father march with Martin Luther King.”
“The record is convincing and clear – George Romney marched with Martin Luther King and other civil rights demonstrators,” Fehrnstrom wrote in an email.
Fehrnstrom had originally told the Phoenix that the two men marched together in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, either in June 1963 or March 1968, a claim the Phoenix called into question earlier today. An additional source, William LeFevre of the Reuther Library at Wayne State University, who is in charge of the papers of the Grosse Pointe Civil Liberties Association, has since confirmed to the Phoenix that George Romney was not at the 1968 event, and that King was not at the 1963 event.
Fehrnstrom now says that the event in question was King’s “Freedom March” in Detroit on June 23, 1963.
He provides one reference, a 1972 book about Detroit, which mentions that Michigan’s then-governor George Romney “was among the prominent whites marching with Reverend King” in the Freedom March (which the book erroneously says took place on July 23).
However, numerous contemporaneous and historical accounts say that Romney did not participate in the Detroit Freedom March, because it was held on the Sabbath. The New York Times, for example, wrote the next day that “Gov. George Romney, who is Mormon and does not make public appearances on Sundays, issued a special proclamation.”