Former President Barack Obama lamented the state of political rhetoric in the U.S. at a rally in Wisconsin on Friday, saying politicians are “just blatantly, repeatedly, baldly, shamelessly lying.”
Obama traveled to Wisconsin to campaign for Democratic candidates including Sen. Tammy Baldwin, gubernatorial candidate Tony Evers and others. Obama accused Republicans of lying about healthcare, namely that GOP politicians would protect coverage of pre-existing conditions. (RELATED: Obama Prepares For The Campaign Trail, But Some Democrats Want Him To Back Off)
“Listen throughout human history, certainly throughout American history, politicians have exaggerated. They make promises that they may try to fulfill, but then it turns out to be harder than they expected,” Obama told the crowd assembled in Milwaukee. “They pump up the things that they did that are good.”
“They downplay the things that they did that aren’t so good. They try to put a positive spin on things,” Obama continued. “But what we have not seen before, in our recent public life, at least, is politicians just blatantly, repeatedly, baldly, shamelessly lying.”
Obama spun news, evaded questions, contradicted himself and made false statements a number of times while he was in office.
In 2011, Obama claimed he “signed into law the biggest middle-class tax cut in history,” referring to the Making Work Pay provision in his stimulus package.
Obama’s calculation for his claim was based on “dubious math,” according to The Washington Post. Former-presidents John F. Kennedy and George W. Bush signed larger tax cuts into law.
When campaigning for the Affordable Care Act, Obama claimed, “If you like your health-care plan, you can keep it.”
After his bill passed, cancellation notices hit at least two million Americans’ mailboxes because of a short cutoff to bring existing plans in compliance with the new law, The Washington Post reported.
Terrorists attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11, 2012, killing four Americans including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens. Obama and his administration downplayed the terrorist aspect of the attack in the immediate aftermath of the event, but the then-president later tried to spin his comments, saying, “the day after Benghazi happened, I acknowledged this was an act of terrorism.”
Obama referred vaguely to an “act of terror” immediately after the attack, but “over a period of two weeks, given three opportunities in interviews to affirmatively agree that the Benghazi attack was a terrorist attack, the president obfuscated or ducked the question,” The Washington Post reports.
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