I Heard Romney Killed A Guy

You know, even for politics, this is pretty fucking low:

The pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action lobbed a heavy-duty attack at Mitt Romney this morning, airing an ad that links the closure of a GST Steel plant in Kansas City to the loss of a family’s health insurance — and the death of a woman some time later.

The man speaking in the ad, Joe Soptic, says, “Mitt Romney and Bain closed the plant, I lost my health care and my family lost their health care. And a short time after that my wife became ill.” Soptic explains he’s not exactly sure when his wife became sick, but that when he took her to the hospital she had undetected, advanced cancer and died 22 days later.

The problem? Well, Romney left Bain in 1999. Bain shut down the plant in 2001. And the woman died in 2006. It’s awful that this family was without health insurance and therefore missed a diagnosis that might have saved her life (perhaps; they never say what the cancer was. If it was breast cancer, it might have been very treatable. If it was lung cancer, that’s rarely survivable).

But to blame it on Romney? I find that to be a biiiig stretch. And you really shouldn’t have to stretch very far when you’re blaming him for a woman’s death. An accusation of that magnitude requires a pretty short chain of events.

It’s not like no one in this country has ever been fired and lost their health insurance. Are we to blame all businesses that shut down when bad things happen to their employees? Maybe we could have prevented future incidents like this by weakening or breaking the connection between employment and insurance instead of passing Obamacare and strengthening it. All Obama has done is make — by weakening the economy and put more people into the Medicaid gulag — is made this scenario more likely to happen.

This is from a super PAC, not Obama’s campaign. But we all know how thin the line is between the PACs and the candidates. And the head of the PAc is not backing down, claiming he’s illustrating how long it took communities to recover from Romney’s decisions.

Push this aside slightly and see the bigger picture: it’s a scare tactic. “Republicans are coming to take away your health insurance” is clearly going to be a major plank of this campaign. And given how massively Obama has expanded health insurance subsidies, I fear it will be very effective. There are a lot of people who will lose insurance if Obamacare is rescinded. But that has to be weighed against the damage being done by it existence in place of real reform; reform that would help far more people while maintaining the healthy economy we need so that people don’t lose insurance in the first place.

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  1. Poosh

    Just indicates to me how dubious it is linking your healthcare insurance to your job.

    I’m not surprised at this ad mind you. They get more hysterical by the minute.

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  2. Hal_10000 *

    I’m reading about that this. morning. Bain kept them going for a while but they just couldn’t compete. Also, this guy’s wife HAD insurance through her job but lost it when she was unable to work due to injury.

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  3. InsipiD

    I’m reading about that this. morning. Bain kept them going for a while but they just couldn’t compete. Also, this guy’s wife HAD insurance through her job but lost it when she was unable to work due to injury.

    A. I’m surprised that we know that. One of the reasons that this kind of story is popular with the Democrats is that they can say that the person’s privacy has been violated if the truth about the situation comes out. When it comes to a health/healthcare situation, you’re supposed to get to say whatever you want without answering to the truth.

    B. By now it should be clear that this is a back door to suggest single payer government healthcare. That way she’d have gotten her cancer treatment even if Mitt Romney went to her house, ate her last can of soup, flushed her cancer pills, and burned down her house to roast a marshmallow.

    There are a lot of sticks in the fire here, but a few of them stay all the time. Rich=bad and single-payer are always going to be on the table.

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  4. hist_ed

    Is there a chance that this election will be the first in which a presidential campaign actually suffered for crossing the line on nagtive campaiging?

    This ad is awful. It’s so bad that CNN actually called in awful. And the politidcally smart thing for Obama to do is condemn the ad. Since it is coming from a PAC he can disavow it and the PAC can still run it. But I am guessing he won’t as it plays too well into his narrative about Romney.

    Romney needs to get tough soon. A simple ad playing nationwide that says: “My opponents are simply lying about me. Harry Reid is lying; the PAC ad is lying. I call on the president to condemn these lies so that we can discuss the real issues of this election. But he won’t, because his record is awful.”

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  5. ScottE

    It’s awful that this family was without health insurance and therefore missed a diagnosis that might have saved her life

    Jeebus, even libertarians are starting to equate lack of insurance with lack of health care services. The narrative has been won. It’s over. It’s no wonder they believe this ad will work.

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  6. CM

    Romney needs to get tough soon. A simple ad playing nationwide that says: “My opponents are simply lying about me. Harry Reid is lying; the PAC ad is lying. I call on the president to condemn these lies so that we can discuss the real issues of this election. But he won’t, because his record is awful.”

    Then Obama simply laughs and points to the woeful Romney (and his Super PAC) lies about “You didn’t build that”.

    I completely agree that this anti-Romney advert is terrible.

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  7. hist_ed

    Then Obama simply laughs and points to the woeful Romney (and his Super PAC) lies about “You didn’t build that”.

    Yes indeed, inventing stuff out of thin air is exactly like accurately quoting your opponent’s exact words.

    I can see the point the the “you didn’t build that” statement could be open to different interpretations. Surely, CM, you can see that making shit up is a little different?

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  8. CM

    I can see the point the the “you didn’t build that” statement could be open to different interpretations. Surely, CM, you can see that making shit up is a little different?

    Nope, pretending Obama was saying that people didn’t buy their own businesses is a very clear example of making shit up.
    http://www.politifact.com/tennessee/statements/2012/aug/06/chuck-fleischmann/gop-congressman-chuck-fleischmann-claims-obama-was/

    Anyway, there are 65 others here to choose from (that are either mostly false, false, or pants on fire false – a total of 43% of the claims/statements they looked at). My point was really to illustrate that saying “my opponent lies” is never going to work.
    (BTW Obama has 111 of those, 29% of the total)

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  9. CM

    Soptic was featured in the controversial ad aired by the Obama campaign in May that called Romney a “vampire” — a charge that drew condemnation from Democrats, including Newark Mayor Cory Booker.

    Soptic has also participated on at least one conference call for the Obama campaign, before taping spots for the officially sanctioned pro-Obama super PAC.

    The longstanding relationship with Soptic strains the Obama campaign’s evasiveness on the Priorities ad, in which aides have said they can’t comment on it because they are unfamiliar with the facts. It also tests the fuzzy lines between super PACs and their affiliated, but technically uncoordinated, campaigns.

    http://www.buzzfeed.com/zekejmiller/man-in-superpac-ad-starred-in-controversial-obama

    Dodgy! And stupid.

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  10. Poosh

    I hope all those olympians know that they didn’t earn those medals, somebody else made that happen. Somebody invented table-tennis and government built that stadium.

    All hail Obama! All hail the collective! Without a big fat government, we’d all be nothing!

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  11. CM

    I hope all those olympians know that they didn’t earn those medals, somebody else made that happen. Somebody invented table-tennis and government built that stadium.

    All hail Obama! All hail the collective! Without a big fat government, we’d all be nothing!

    I can see the point but the “You Didn’t Get Here Solely On Your Own” statement could be open to different interpretations. ;-p

    Push this aside slightly and see the bigger picture: it’s a scare tactic. “Republicans are coming to take away your health insurance” is clearly going to be a major plank of this campaign. And given how massively Obama has expanded health insurance subsidies, I fear it will be very effective. There are a lot of people who will lose insurance if Obamacare is rescinded. But that has to be weighed against the damage being done by it existence in place of real reform; reform that would help far more people while maintaining the healthy economy we need so that people don’t lose insurance in the first place.

    Romney can surely stop it being as successful by putting out his own plan of what would replace it, and explain how it would lead to better outcomes for families like the Soptics.

    Today, however, the Romney camp responded to the ad in a way that makes this whole dust-up an important clarifying moment. Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul suggested today that Soptic’s wife would have had health insurance if she had lived in Massachusetts and had been covered by Romneycare. “If people had been in Massachusetts, under Gov. Romney’s health care plan, they would have had health care,” Saul said.

    Conservatives are apoplectic. They think this has given the Obama team a big opening to remake its case about Obamacare. And they’re right. The Romney campaign now seems to be claiming that government-established universal health care is the answer to what to do about people like Ms. Soptic who lack insurance. That’s Obama’s argument for Obamacare. The Romney campaign will argue that they only favor state-based insurance mandates to achieve universal coverage. That’s true. But this debate is occuring in the context of a presidential race. Something approaching universal health care is now the law of the land. But as president, Romney would take it away from people like the Soptics, without saying with any specificity what he would replace it with.

    The larger story here is this: Even if this ad makes unsupportable charges — and even if you think there’s nothing objectionable about Bain’s conduct — the ad dramatizes a larger story about what has happened to the middle class in this country. There is a straightforward difference of opinion between the two candidates over how to respond to this — over the degree to which the federal government should intervene to protect people like Ms. Soptic. Obama believes in aggressive federal action to cushion the blow of market outcomes like the one that hit families like the Soptics with such force. Romney — even though his campaign has now said universal health care is the right answer in cases like hers — is promising to roll back government protections for families like theirs. Whatever you think of the ad, that’s the more important larger argument to be having here — and it has been clarified this week.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/post/debate-over-dead-woman-is-clarifying-moment-in-prez-race/2012/08/08/e24e67f6-e188-11e1-98e7-89d659f9c106_blog.html

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  12. Poosh

    Did Obama say:

    “Roads are built by government and are used by businessmen to create their businesses and get rich. Because businessmen did not build those bridges, it follows that businessmen are in debt to the government for building those roads”

    or did he say:

    “Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.”

    It seems obvious that Mr. Obama thinks businessmen do not build their own businesses, they were co-built by government. Indeed he says the work and intelligence that goes into making a business isn’t a relevant factor. As Romney says – read the entire speech. The speech is far worse than the soundbite.

    Oh, and a big FUCK YOU to these liberal/leftist scum over this. All of a sudden they give a shit about words? These same DUMB FUCKS who thought Condoleezza Rice said Saddam helped 9/11 !!! ergo Bush lied etc

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  13. ilovecress

    Are we really going to go into this again?

    At this point, the argument is null and void, because we’re arguing people’s personal interpretation of the word ‘that’. Which is dumb.

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  14. CM

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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