(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
Over the past few weeks, the Romney campaign has relentlessly accused President Obama of “ending the work requirement” and “gutting welfare reform.” The ads have proven effective for Romney, driving a wedge between Obama and white working class voters and inching the polls in Romney’s direction.
But don’t just take it from us and the fact checkers. Here are five Republicans who have admitted that Romney’s welfare attacks have no basis in reality:
In his neverending quest to be the least helpful campaign surrogate ever, Gingrich went on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 to defend Romney’s dog whistle politics — only to eventually concede “we have no proof” that Obama ended the work requirement.
On MSNBC’s Jansing and Company, host Chris Jansing asked conservative Kansas Governor Sam Brownback whether he agrees “these claims that the work requirement has been abolished are false?”
“As far as I have seen, but I don’t know all of the basis to it,” Brownback replied, before shifting the subject.
On his MSNBC’s Morning Joe, former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough slammed Romney’s welfare ads as “completely false.”
“I’ve been looking for a week-and-a-half to try to figure out the basis of this welfare reform ad, I’ve scoured the Wall Street Journal editorial pages,” Scarborough said. “The ad’s completely false. It’s just completely false.”
(Photo by Gage Skidmore)
After a long exchange with The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart, former pizza executive and presidential candidate Herman Cain admitted that Romney’s attacks were wrong.
Raw Story provides a partial transcript of their conversation:
“I’m not disagreeing with the fact that the language was too strong,” Cain said. “But it gives states the opportunity to so-called increase [in employment], but the examples I have been shown, it decreased.”
“No, no, no, no,” Stewart said. “It’s not about lessening them. It’s about making sure it’s not a, I believe the phrase is, ‘One size fits all.’”
“I would agree with that,” Cain said repeatedly.
“It seems to me that not only is ‘gutting’ wrong, but lessening is wrong,” Stewart replied. “That, lessening would still be pants, necessarily not on fire, but certainly smoldering.”
“There are situations where they were looking at lessening, but…” Cain trailed off. “But I’m not… I will go along with your description.”
Then Cain turned to the audience, raised his arms and shouted: “I am sorry! So shoot me!”
(Photo by Gage Skidmore)
While Romney has stuck by his attacks (laughably claiming that Obama killed welfare reform to “shore up his base,“) a quick look at his past makes it clear that he doesnt’ believe his own rhetoric.
When Romney was still governor of Massachusetts, he co-signed a letter with 29 other Republican governors requesting even broader waivers than the ones that he now argues have gutted welfare reform. So either Romney wanted to kill the work requirement while he was governor or, more likely, he knows what the rest of us do: his ads are completely bogus. And in his convention acceptance speech, replete with criticisms of Obama, the Republican nominee completely omitted any mention of welfare.