What Ryan actually said about that GM plant

September 06, 2012

In his letter, William Smith writes that Rep. Paul Ryan lied in his convention speech regarding the GM plant in Janesville, Wisconsin ("No denying Ryan's lying," Sept. 5). The facts are that Mr. Ryan categorized the plant in these exact words, that it was a plant "we were about to lose." By saying they were about to lose the plant, Mr. Ryan acknowledged that the plant was already scheduled to be shut down when candidate Barack Obama visited it in 2008.

Therefore, it is ridiculous to claim that he was making the charge that the plant was closed because of something President Obama didn't do. No, the point of the statement was that candidate Obama visited the plant and said, "I believe that if our government is there to support you … this plant will be here for another hundred years." And the fact is that the plant was running cars off the assembly line until its doors were finally closed in mid-2009, after President Obama took office. Now, the decision as to which plants to close was not President Obama's to make, that decision was made by GM. However, President Obama mislead the people who were desperately hoping the plant would stay open with his statement. The insinuation was, vote for him and the government will see to it that this plant stays open for another hundred years. That didn't happen.

Mr. Ryan's point is to beware of the vague promises President Obama makes on the campaign trail this time around. People can decide for themselves if Mr. Obama has fallen short of the promise of 2008, and it's sound politics for the Republicans to point out an incumbent's broken promises; that's been a part of politics since the beginning of time. Turning the congressman's statement into anything beyond that is gutter politics. Besides, I believe that's sound advice not to fall for the soaring rhetoric of politicians on the campaign trail, whether it's Republicans or Democrats making the promises.

Fred Pasek, Frederick

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