One of the drawbacks with being a serial liar is that the chain never ends.As you get deeper into it and things start to unravel, you're forced to come up with even bigger lies to try and cover and justify the earlier ones. And while some people will always be True Believers,the longer and more tangled the the chain gets and the more people start seeing through it.
The Boston Globe, a staunchly leftist organ published a story yesterday alleging that GOP candidate Mitt Romney had lied about the date of his ending his active management of Bain Capital in 1999. The Globe story said they had uncovered new Securities and Exchange Commission documents showing that Romney had managerial control over Bain through 2002.. And just for good measure, Obama Deputy Campaign Manager Stephanie Cotter doubled down. On a conference call with reporters she accused Romney of “misrepresenting his position” at Bain to the SEC, saying that Romney was guilty of “ a felony.”
“Either Mitt Romney, through his own words and his own signature, was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony. Or he was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the American people to avoid responsibility for some of the consequences of his investments,” Cutter said.
President Obama can't run on his execrable record and Mitt Romney's personal life is squeaky clean, so the president can't pull off a sleazy attack the way he did on Jack Ryan in the Illinois senate race. His campaign has centered on Bain Capital as a useful symbol to beat the class warfare drum with, and the Obama campaign has literally bet the farm on this, spending millions in attack ads. As the first barrage, falsely calling Romney an 'outsourcer' started to stumble, it was therefore necessary to come up with a followup to protect their investment.
Several fact checkers, notably the WAPO's Glenn Kessler, the Columbia Journalism Review’s Brendan Nyhan, and ABC News’ Devin Dwyer have already debunked this nonsense thoroughly. Unfortunately, the facts are just complex enough that some of the mud will stick with people unwilling or unable to sift through them to get at the truth. Which of course is what the Obama Campaign is counting on.
Here in as brief a nutshell as I can reduce this to are the actual facts. The SEC documents the Globe claimed they 'uncovered' are actually public documents that are old news, with reports on them as some sort of smoking gun by the Angry Left's media lackeys having previously been debunked by financial correspondent Dan Primack at Fortune Magazine in a July 2nd article, hardly a right wing outlet.
Mitt Romney gave up active management of Bain Capital in February of 1999 in order to go to work rescuing the Olympics. However, as is quite common in business, his name remained listed in SEC paperwork as chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president. There's no legal requirement for someone having these titles to have any active duties managing a company, and frequently in large companies they don't.The idea is to have them on the letterhead, and that particularly makes sense in a company like Bain, since Mitt Romney was the driving engine behind its success. He was a CEO on a leave of absence and simply never returned.
When Romney left the firm in 1999, as Kessler reports, the partnership was left in a state of uncertainty and almost broke up. The situation with Bain wasn't resolved until 2002, after the Salt Lake City Olympics, when Mitt Romney decided to run for governor. At that point, Romney signed retirement papers that set his departure date as February 1999, the date he ceased being involved in Bain's active management.
It gets better. When Bain Capital issued the legally required offering documents for Bain Capital funds circulating in 2000 and 2001, Romney was not listed as being among the investment professionals who would be managing the funds. His signature is on SEC filings on 6 select deals he had worked on previously (which makes sense if he was winding up his affairs), but not on any new business after February of 1999.And the people at Bain confirm that:
In explaining the SEC documents filed in 2000 and 2001, Pagliuca said, "Due to the sudden nature of Mr. Romney's departure, he remained the sole stockholder for a time while formal ownership was being documented and transferred to the group of partners who took over management of the firm in 1999. Accordingly, Mr. Romney was reported in various capacities on SEC filings during this period."
Not only that, but ironically, when Massachusetts Democrats tried to keep Romney off the ballot in the 2002 governor’s race on the grounds that he had failed to meet the requirement to have lived seven consecutive years in Massachusetts, an official investigation by the 2002 Massachusetts Ballot Law Commission officially determined that the Democrat's claim was 'without merit' and that Romney had given up his position at Bain as of February 1999 to work for the Salt Lake Organizing Committee but had taken the necessary steps to maintain his Massachusetts residency."Nothing. Nothing. Nothing. He was just gone. And it happened very suddenly. ... After that, he was not on calls or writing memos. He was gone."
In short, the evidence shows clearly that Mitt Romney had no active role in Bain Capital after February, 1999. Only in the bizarro world of the leftist Alinsky style 2 minute hate would this even be an issue.
Governor Romney responded to these attacks in depth and asked for an apology, but the response from the president was essentially the equivalent of a middle finger.
I think it's fitting to end this with words out of President Obama's own mouth: