It’s often been pointed out that one of the main problems with fact-checking dishonest politicians is that they know they can continue to lie with impunity, since no one in the media cares except for a few pointy-headed truth-squadders.
Here is one of the best examples of this we’ve ever seen.
Meet Josh Mandel, the GOP challenger to Ohio Dem Senator Sherrod Brown. National right wing groups have spent huge money targeting him, and the race could be pivotal to Dem hopes of holding the Senate.
Mandel has been pilloried by Politifact for excessive lying about Brown, particularly with regard to his “pants on fire” claim that Brown is one of the politicians most responsible for Ohio jobs moving to China.
But in a confrontational interview with the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Mandel attacked Politifact as politically motived, insisted his claims are true, and went on to offer a remarkable response. Mandel said he was under no obligation to back up his own assertions, and confidently predicted he’d continue repeating them “again and again” with no repurcussions:
Consider his response in an interview last week when asked again to identify a single Ohio job that went to China because of a decisive vote by Brown.
“If that’s the level of specificity you’re looking for, you’re the reporters — you go do the grunt work,” said Mandel, who lives in Beachwood. “Any reporter who doesn’t believe Sherrod Brown is responsible for jobs going to China is simply out of touch.”
PolitiFact Ohio already had done the “grunt work” and found that the examples cited by Mandel’s campaign failed to back up his claim, hence the Pants on Fire rating. Right or wrong, Mandel vowed to repeat the assertion “again and again” and said he sees no downside.
And you know what? He’s probably right! Indeed, in forthrightly admitting that he won’t be substantiating his claims because there’s no downside in repeating a debunked assertion again and again, Mandel for once deserves points for honesty.