Last month, PolitiFact selected its “Lie of the Year.” Given PolitiFact’s dubious record of singling out Republicans for lying far more often than Democrats, you probably could have guessed the winner of this particular sweepstakes was a Mitt Romney campaign ad:
It was a lie told in the critical state of Ohio in the final days of a close campaign — that Jeep was moving its U.S. production to China. It originated with a conservative blogger, who twisted an accurate news story into a falsehood. Then it picked up steam when the Drudge Report ran with it. Even though Jeep’s parent company gave a quick and clear denial, Mitt Romney repeated it and his campaign turned it into a TV ad.
And they stood by the claim, even as the media and the public expressed collective outrage against something so obviously false.
Fiat sees at least 100,000 Jeeps made in China in 2014
Reuters – Fiat FIA.MI and its U.S. unit Chrysler expect to roll out at least 100,000 Jeeps in China when production starts in 2014 as they seek to catch up with rivals in the world’s biggest car market.
As Hemingway writes, “The ad … never said that Jeep was moving U.S. jobs to China, let alone its entire operations to China. All the ad says, and this is correct, is that the Obama administration played a hand in selling Chrysler to ‘Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China.’” PolitiFact responded to the Weekly Standard by arguing, “The Romney campaign was crafty with its word choice, so campaign aides could claim to be speaking the literal truth, but the ad left a false impression that all Jeep production was being moved to China.”
Politifact doesn’t like the Pants on Fire label, they tweeted so
Yes, it’s still the Lie of the Year. News reports on Jeep don’t change the deception: bit.ly/SWUxdc
— PolitiFact (@politifact) January 18, 2013
- Daily Caller’s Jim Treacher slams Politifact for standing by completely true ‘Lie of the Year’ (twitchy.com)
- PolitiFact 2012 Lie of the Year Finalists: Vote in the Readers’ Poll (ironmill.com)