Mitt Romney is set to take another big step forward tonight on the road to the White House. He'll accept his party's nomination at the Republican National Convention as the event wraps up in Tampa. But last night, it was all about Rep. Paul Ryan. Romney's running mate took direct aim at President Obama, making his case for the GOP ticket.
This morning on "Starting Point," Romney Senior Advisor Eric Fehrnstrom addresses the may questions this morning about the factual accuracy of some of Ryan's claims in his speech.
Ryan says that "Right there at that plant, candidate Obama said: 'I believe that if our government is there to support you...this plant will be here for another hundred years.' That's what he said in 2008. Well, as it turned out, that plant didn't last another year. It is locked up and empty to this day."
Berman points out that the decision to close the GM plant Janesville, WI, was made in June of 2008 when President Bush was in office. Berman asks Fehrnstrom if what Ryan says is misleading.
"Well, no he didn’t talk about Obama closing the plant," Fehrnstrom says. "He said candidate Obama went there in 2008 and what he said was with government assistance, we can keep this plant open for another 100 years. Here we are four years into his administration. That plant is still closed. I think it's a symbol of a recovery that hasn't materialized for the people of Janesville, Wisconsin, just as it hasn't materialized for Americans everywhere."
Berman pushed back on Fehrnstrom, saying that Ryan left the impression President Obama shut down the plant.
"I encourage people to go back and look at what candidate Obama said in 2008," Fehrnstrom adds. "What he said was with his recovery program, with government assistance, we can keep that plant open for 100 years. Four years later, it's still shuttered. I think it's a symbol of a broken economy under this president."
Berman also asks Fehrnstrom about his thoughts on the uproar on his “Etch A Sketch” comment he made in March on Starting Point, pointing out that other prominent Republicans are still talking about Romney having the chance to reintroduce himself to the American public.
Fehrnstrom says, “the point I was making back then is that the campaign in the general election is going to be different than the primary campaign in this sense. In the primary campaign we had eight opponents. We were talking about the legislative record of some of those opponents like Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. Today we’re in a different situation. It’s a one-on-one contest with President Obama. And I think what we’re looking forward to is the opportunity to debate the President in October three times and I think what people will see in that setting is a person in Mitt Romney who is extraordinarily qualified to lead at a time of crisis in this country. He has a plan to put America back to work. And we can compare that to the failures of the Obama administration over the last four years in creating jobs and getting this economy in order.”