Easily Debunked Romney Talking Points, Part 1

I'm finding the artlessness and incompetence of the Romney campaign really amusing. Take, for instance, the core talking point in this segment (in which Anderson Cooper can't help but point out a couple of other blatant lies being told by Romney's surrogate):

Gitcho's main point is that Romney's job creation record is better than Obama's, because the unemployment rate under Obama is still above 8% while Romney got the unemployment rate in Massachusetts under 5%. And, as she says, "We're happy to compare those records!"

So let's compare them:

Hmm. Obama improved his rate by about 1.1% (with the final 2012 number not yet in) while Romney improved his by 0.7%. I guess we could call that a wash (it should be easier to drop a bigger number, all else being equal)... except that there's one more bit of context:

  • Under Romney, the MA unemployment rate went from 5.2% (against a national average of 5.5%) in 2003 to 4.5% (against a national average of 4.6%) in 2007

In short, the MA unemployment rate under Romney failed to keep pace with the national average, improving only 0.7% when the whole country improved by 0.9%

Are you sure you're happy to compare these records, Ms. Gitcho?

The amazing thing to me is that Obama's job creation record is actually hard to defend in a typical pundit-sized sound bite. The defense becomes a debate over the stimulus and whether it was successful, and who's to blame for it being less effective than it could have been. But by making a comparison to Romney's own weak MA numbers, instead of attacking Obama's numbers in isolation, the Romney campaign shoots itself in the foot. The talking point all but rebuts itself.

Morons. Absolute morons.

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