It’s Halloween, so I thought I’d assemble some really scary things for you to think about today (and leading up to election day on Tuesday).
1. In the wake of Sandy, let’s remember Mitt Romney’s big laugh line during his RNC speech: “President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans…and to heal the planet….”
He went on to say that it’s immoral for the United States to take out loans to help fellow Americans. Really? I’d say it’s immoral not to do anything and everything possible to help those in need, especially after a disaster like Sandy.
2. Mitt Romney’s campaign claims it’s doing the right thing and suspending campaigning during a national emergency and disaster, but they didn’t stop at all. Instead, they re-branded already scheduled events from “Victory Rally” to “Hurricane Relief” -without bothering to spend the extra few bucks to change the media passes)
Further, they have no idea how the Red Cross operates, or what its needs are to best help the people in need. As Buzzfeed reports:
The last-minute decision by Romney high command Monday to suspend politics while Sandy raged sent aides in Ohio scrambling to convert a scheduled victory rally into an apolitical “storm relief event” — a process that tested the campaign’s agility, and left a few threads of partisanship inadvertently hanging.
On Monday morning, Romney’s local team in Dayton was eagerly preparing to host the candidate the following day. A high school gym had been reserved, a stage had been rented, and a pair of celebrity guests — country singer Randy Owen, and NASCAR driver Richard Petty — had been booked to give the event some B-list heft.
Then, a little before noon, communications director Gail Gitcho announced the cancellation of “all events currently scheduled” for Tuesday. The superstorm that forecasters had been warning about for days had picked up steam, and people throughout the northeast were now bracing for the worst. In a statement, Gitcho said the decision to cancel campaign events had been made “out of sensitivity to the millions of Americans in the path of Hurricane Sandy.”
But Boston wasn’t quite ready to lose a full day of swing state visibility with a week left in the race. So, after some deliberation, the campaign decided to use their existing venue in Ohio to stage a makeshift, and nonpartisan, humanitarian project. It would be a way for Romney to show leadership — and get on the local news — without looking craven or opportunistic….
The plan was for supporters to bring hurricane relief supplies to the event, and then deliver the bags of canned goods, packages of diapers, and cases of water bottles to the candidate, who would be perched behind a table along with a slew of volunteers and his Ohio right-hand man, Senator Rob Portman. To complete the project and photo-op, Romney would lead his crew in carrying the goods out of the gymnasium and into the Penske rental truck parked outside.
But the last-minute nature of the call for donations left some in the campaign concerned that they would end up with an empty truck. So the night before the event, campaign aides went to a local Wal Mart and spent $5,000 on granola bars, canned food, and diapers to put on display while they waited for donations to come in, according to one staffer. (The campaign confirmed that it “did donate supplies to the relief effort,” but would not specify how much it spent.)
When reporters s arrived on site ahead of the candidate, they were given press badges describing the event as a “victory rally” — a result, one aide told BuzzFeed, of the event’s last-minute repurposing. He said the badges were printed Monday morning, before the change had been announced.
And shortly thereafter, the two large projector screens near the ceiling lit up with a glossy, 10-minute biographical video about the candidate, one that debuted at the Republican National Convention….
But even as Romney, clad in blue jeans and rolled-up sleeves, hustled around his area of the gym, shaking hands, thanking supporters, and stacking cases of bottled water on top of each other, signs of stagecraft remained.
As supporters lined up to greet the candidate, a young volunteer in a Romney/Ryan t-shirt stood near the tables, his hands cupped around his mouth, shouting, “You need a donation to get in line!”
Empty-handed supporters pled for entrance, with one woman asking, “What if we dropped off our donations up front?”
The volunteer gestured toward a pile of groceries conveniently stacked near the candidate. “Just grab something,” he said.
To drive home the fact that Romney has no clue about how to help in a situation like this, the Red Cross doesn’t want or need those kinds of supplies. When even Andrea Mitchell criticizes him for this breach of sense, you know it’s a massive mistake!
3. Even after he’s called out by by not only Chrysler, but GM on their misleading ad claiming that President Obama’s auto rescue resulted in Chrysler moving Jeep production overseas, and the Washington Post awarding it the coveted FOUR Pinocchios, the Romney campaign doubles down by increasing the TV ad buy and putting a similar but even more misleading ad on the radio!
I could continue, but you get the idea. It’s Halloween. Today is supposed to be scary. Election day is six days off. We’re looking at at least four years of a terrifying reality of Romney is elected. Please keep us safe and vote Obama!
Today on the show, I spoke with Russ Baker, founder of WhoWhatWhy.com – a true bastion of independent journalism in a sea of infotainment. Today, they republished a story from a few years back, “Lessons from Another Hurricane,” because it’s so important to remember in the aftermath of Sandy. We also discussed “The Viral Video That Could Wound Obama — And the Hidden Agenda Behind It” because you need to know about these things. And finally, to help support WhoWhatWhy and insure it continues, please check out their Kickstarter campaign.
It’s Wednesday, so Amy Simon of She’s History joined in. As today is our last segment together before election day, she told the story of Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for president. You need to hear this story!