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Rove Answers Critics with Debunked Arguments on Face The Nation

Rove Answers Critics with Debunked Arguments on Face The Nation

Yesterday I offered some criticism regarding the debate over secret, outside money flowing to political campaigns in the 2010 midterms.  The point of the post was that as the pundits and press quibble over  process and legality, the more immediate problem is getting missed — the ads these secret donations are funding tend to be deceptive.  Below is a perfect example of why the media is missing it.

Among those mentioned yesterday was Karl Rove, co-founder of American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS.  The first is a Super PAC, a classification created in the wake of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision, and must disclose its donors.  The second is a 501(c)(4) non-profit group which needn’t disclose its donors’ identities.  Crossroads GPS and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which maintains a 501(c)(6), came under fire from the Obama administration and other Democrats earlier this month.

On Sunday morning (Oct. 24) Rove went on CBS’ Face the Nation to, once again, declare those who question his groups’ methods to be “hypocritical.”  Rove’s supporting evidence was just as deceptive as an American Crossroads television spot.

Via Talking Points Memo:

Appearing on Face The Nation, Karl Rove defended the fundraising and spending of his group American Crossroads, which the White House has attacked for not disclosing its funding sources. In response, Rove said that Prescient Obama benefitted from over $400 million in outside support during the 2008 campaign: “And if liberals do it and nobody complains about it, it strikes me as somewhat hypocritical when conservatives adopt their strategies and follow their models and conservatives get criticized by the President of the United States by name.”

Rove is deliberately misleading here.  According to  OpenSecrets, of the nearly $750 million raised by the Obama presidential campaign, 90.2 percent was disclosed.  The $400 million figure cited by Rove is particularly curious when you consider that the total amount of outside money spent on all candidates — Democrats and Republicans – during the 2008 cycle was just over $300 million.  On top of these distortions, consider that Obama actively discouraged Democratic donors from going through outside groups.

Then Rove falsely attacked conservatives’ second favorite target:  organized labor.

Via CBS News:

“Four unions alone will have, according to their own announcements, spent $220 million in money on elections this year,” Rove said.

 ”We know who they are,” [Host, Bob Schieffer] said, pointing out that labor unions must disclose where their funding comes from.

 ”No, you don’t, Bob,” Rove replied, and claimed that the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)was not being forthcoming.

I’m uncertain if the dollar amount is right, but Rove’s assertion about the disclosure of Labor’s campaign contributions was debunked by Politico’s Ben Smith, Oct. 8:

…when it comes to disclosure, talk of unions is a red herring. While they aren’t required by the FEC or IRS to disclose donors, a separate piece of federal law, the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act, requires that unions disclose all sources of income that adds up to more than $5,000, a requirement overseen by the Department of Labor. As a result, unions disclose more than many political groups about their internal operations, and certainly more than than do 501(c)(4) nonprofits like Crossroads GPS or 501(c)(6) groups like the Chamber.

This is just Rove doing his usual tap-dance around the actual argument by creating his own.  Rove wants to argue about all outside money while the controversy is primarily over the secret, undisclosed donations.  Bob Schieffer’s asking about apples, and Rove is talking about oranges that he’s actually presenting as grapefruits.

Greg Sargent put together an informal, apples to apples comparison of liberal v. conservative undisclosed contributions based upon figures from the Sunlight Foundation, Oct. 22:

The total on the right: $74,733,356. On the left: $9,868,057. And the groups on the left, unlike on the right, consist of well-known names like the Sierra Club and Defenders of Wildlife.

 Lastly, consider this the next time you hear Rove call anyone a hypocrite:

“I am a firm believer in strong (political) parties, and things that weaken the parties and place the outcome of elections in the hands of billionaires who can write checks and political consultants who can get themselves hired by billionaires who write the checks, give me some concern.”

Karl Rove, 2004

 

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39 comments

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9:56AM PDT on Oct 29, 2010

Everyone who wanted progress MUST go out and vote against the G NO P! The Republicans are accepting $75 million from unknown sources who refuse to reveal themselves. Call it legalized(by the 5 conservative members of the Supreme Court) bribery. But it is clear that the Republican agenda is simply to gain power at the expense of the middle class. It was Bush and deregulation of the Banks, mortgage companies, and Wall Street that caused this economic mess. Not even Iron Man could repair it with a snap of the fingers. The Party of NO has sabotaged efforts to improve it just to keep things bad so they could manipulate anger into power. You MUST defeat this cynical, money accepting party from giving back to their corporate sponsors their soul for $$$$ (75 million worth). DO NOT SIT THIS ONE OUT. If you do, EVIL and GREED and EXTREMISTS will prevail! VOTE! Damn it, YOU MUST VOTE!
(COPY AND SPREAD THIS IF YOU AGREE…WHEREVER YOU FEEL IT WILL BE READ AND RECEIVED.)

12:57AM PDT on Oct 29, 2010

Everyone who wanted progress MUST go out and vote against the G NO P! The Republicans are accepting $75 million from unknown sources who refuse to reveal themselves. Call it legalized(by the 5 conservative members of the Supreme Court) bribery. But it is clear that the Republican agenda is simply to gain power at the expense of the middle class. It was Bush and deregulation of the Banks, mortgage companies, and Wall Street that caused this economic mess. Not even Iron Man could repair it with a snap of the fingers. The Party of NO has sabotaged efforts to improve it just to keep things bad so they could manipulate anger into power. You MUST defeat this cynical, money accepting party from giving back to their corporate sponsors their soul for $$$$ (75 million worth). DO NOT SIT THIS ONE OUT. If you do, EVIL and GREED and EXTREMISTS will prevail! VOTE! Damn it, YOU MUST VOTE!
(COPY AND SPREAD THIS IF YOU AGREE…WHEREVER YOU FEEL IT WILL BE READ AND RECEIVED.)

8:09PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

You notice, tests to determine if you are honest enough for a job have a trick question such as -- have you told a lie in the last six months?

Say no, and you flunk the test. Unqualified......

refresh your education!

5:30PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

Wouldn't it be fun if all of a sudden these liers, both left and right and everywhere in between, where overcome with an energy virus that caused them to start speaking the trueth and live up to it! Sort of like the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz when he finaly got a brain, the Lion, some courage, and the Tim Man, a heart. And then we could throw some water on the Wicked Witch of the North and watch her melltttt....And the Winged Monkeys could all be free again !

5:20PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

Rove is a slick character. Remember when he was called to court and thumbed his nose? Well, if he could get by with that, he's got the clout of immunity and can pull any dirty trick he wants. Just look at his ugly self-satisfied face, and you can tell we've got no power over him and he knows it. Pig.

4:08PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

Why do you think Dubya's nickname for Rove was ShitBlossom?

2:52PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

The De-Moralization of the USA has been complete. You continue to believe in elected officials, and politicians, and their associations who are traitors to We-The-People, and are engaged in treason. The objective is to sell-out and destroy We-The-People; because, the British seeks to own the USA once again. Why do you think that everyone is a SLAVE-TO-DEBT? London is the BANK Capital of the world, and London will seek to FORECLOSE on everyone who cannot repay on Loans, Mortgages, and Credit Cards. Home Foreclosure is nothing compared to the Nation Foreclosure, and that's when World War Three will begin. Now, take a look at the riots in Paris, France, and think back to the riots in Greece,... CAN YOU SEE WHAT'S ON THE HORIZON......

12:53PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

Terry King says: How can you tell that Carl Rove is lying?..............................

because his lips are moving

12:04PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

Didn't Karl Rove provide about a third of the funding for those "Swift Boater" ads against John Kerry? And didn't it turn out that the veterans in the ads had been duped into appearing in the ads with lies and distortions, then selectively edited for broadcast so what they said sounded worse than it had actually been?

After all the lies, duplicity, deceit, prevarications, untruths, deceptions, distortions, fabrications, falsehoods, misrepresentations, whoppers, tall tales, and just plain bullsh*t Rove has deliberately and knowingly piled up and presented as truth, the question is not why anyone would doubt him, but why anyone would ever believe a word that comes out of his mouth. Or a word any of his much-entangled political groups say, for that matter.

The only time I want to see Rove's dishonest, immoral face on TV is in a mug shot -- when he's finally jailed for the crimes he committed in the name of establishing and maintaining the Bush regime.

The real trouble with Rove and his ilk is that the media seems to allow them to keep telling their lies LONG after the real truth is out. Anybody interviewing this creep, or writing a story about anything he has to say, owes it to the public to check the facts and call the liar on his lies.

This is the guy who put the "con" in neo-con.

11:54AM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

if there's a picture of Karl Rove like that then I like to see a picture of Rush Limbaugh, and Dick Cheney.

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