The campaign of President Barack Obama lied not once, but at least twice, about both its knowledge and role in the use of a Missouri steelworker in a controversial pro-Obama SuperPAC political ad claiming the worker’s wife died of cancer after Mitt Romney‘s private equity firm laid him off.
After disclosures that the steelworker previously appeared in an Obama campaign ad and even participated in a campaign conference call, Obama campaign officials backed off pious — and untruthful — denials that they knew about him.
“No one is denying he was in one of our campaign ads,” Obama spokesman Jen Psaki told reporters on Air Force One Thursday. “He was on a conference call telling his story.”
Psaki’s lates spin on the developing controversy was itself a life. The campaign did in fact deny knowledge of steelworker Joe Soptic or his story several times but backtracked after the web site POLITICO and other news sources revealed he appeared in a previous Obama ad and had participated in a conference call.
The revelations brought a quick response from the Romney camp with this statement from spokesman Amanda Henneberg:
Amanda Henneberg, a spokesperson for the Romney campaign, said this in a statement:
President Obama’s campaign has been caught lying about its knowledge concerning a vicious smear run by his Super PAC. And now, they have doubled down with another dishonorable and dishonest attack. In 2008, candidate Obama said ‘you make a big election about small things’ when you don’t have a record to run on. Since President Obama can’t run on record unemployment, falling incomes, and massive debt, he has decided to run a dirty campaign that is an affront to everything he claims to stand for.
Democrats are also uncomfortable with the Obama campaign’s lying over the ad.
“They’re not telling the truth,” Mika Brzeznski, co-host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program,” said on the air Thursday.
“This is dangerous territory for the Obama campaign,” a prominent Democratic consultant told Capitol Hill Blue Thursday. “Sadly, it is not the only area where they are light on facts.”