Paul Ryan's speech at the Republican National Convention last week was full of inaccuracies, but when brought to ask on the issue, he offered up a totally different perspective. Appearing on NBC's TODAY show Tuesday (Sept. 4), Ryan was asked if he played “fast and loose with the truth” during the speech, and denied ever saying many of the topics, proven by websites, including Fox News, as being incorrect.
Among the points causing controversy was the Wisconsin native's talk of a GM plant in 2008, in which he said the following:
“In Janesville [Wisconsin], where we were about to lose a major factory. A lot of guys I went to high school with worked at that GM plant. Right there at that plant, candidate Obama said, 'I believe that if our government is there to support you, this plant will be here for another hundred years.' That's what he said in 2008. Well, as it turned out, that plant didn't last another year. It is locked up and empty to this day.”
According to Ryan, claims that he blamed the president for the plant shutting down, are untrue. Although he failed to acknowledge that it closed before Obama was even sworn into office, the purpose of the statement was to give examples of how the president has not kept his word. “What they're trying to suggest is that I said that Barack Obama was responsible for our plant shut down in Janesville, that is not what I was saying,” he told Lauer. “Read the speech. What I was saying is the president out to be held to account for his broken promises.”
What Ryan left out of his address was that Obama visited the plant during his 2008 election campaign, 10-months before it was closed. He believes however that the aforementioned detail doesn't take away from his main point. “After our plant shut down, [Obama] said that he would lead an effort to retool plants like the Janesville plant to get people back to work,” he continued. “It's still idle. People are still not working there. Lots of people I grew up with who lost their jobs there still don't have those jobs there. So my point was not to lay blame on a plant shutdown. It was, ‘This is yet another example of the president's broken promises.'”
Lauer also asked Ryan of his mention of the president essentially dropping the ball on the construction of a “bipartisan debt commission.” Lauer suggested that Ryan was being deceitful by failing to mention that as a member of the Commission on Fiscal Responsibility, he voted to block sending a plan to reduce the deficit to Congress. “If you read the next paragraph, I said Republicans offered alternatives,” he explained.
To be fair, Obama did release a plan to slice the deficit by $3.6 trillion over the next decade, a detail which was not brought up by his opponents.
With the RNC behind them Ryan and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney continue their campaign efforts. Ryan will head to Ohio this afternoon for a rally in Cleveland, followed by a stop in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
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Photo: TODAY show