Mitt Romney is so desperate to create a distraction from the growing call for release of his tax returns, he and his army of Republicans and other apologists, have taken to throwing out any and all smears they can think of with the hope that something sticks in the news cycle. The most alarmingly dishonest of Romney’s false accusations against President Obama is the taking of a single line from a speech our president made about the importance of investing in infrastructure and pretending he was slamming business owners. A Romney press release today makes their deceit clear. It trumpets: “OBAMA, TO BUSINESS OWNERS: ‘YOU DIDN’T BUILD THAT.’”
This interpretation of President Obama’s remarks is a bald-faced lie. Here’s the one sentence in the context of the speech:
“If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. 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.
The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.
So we say to ourselves, ever since the founding of this country, you know what, there are some things we do better together. That’s how we funded the GI Bill. That’s how we created the middle class. That’s how we built the Golden Gate Bridge or the Hoover Dam. That’s how we invented the Internet. That’s how we sent a man to the moon. We rise or fall together as one nation and as one people, and that’s the reason I’m running for president — because I still believe in that idea. You’re not on your own, we’re in this together.”
Jake Tapper at ABC News has a bit more of the speech.
It’s obvious President Obama, in context, was saying every successful business was built in part by relying on a government built infrastructure that was funded by every single taxpayer — workers and owners alike. Indeed, it could be argued that the owners use much more of that infrastructure than any single worker and thus have an obligation to contribute more to its upkeep.
Clearly Mitt Romey is terrified about what is in his tax returns if he’s willing to stoop so low in such desperate attempts to shut down the requests rather than simply release them. So the question remains on the table. What is Mitt Romney hiding?