Quote of the Day: Truth Is Libel

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From Newt Gingrich, after two days spent furiously rowing back his Meet the Press attack on Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan:

Any ad which quotes what I said on Sunday is a falsehood.

You have to give the guy credit for stones, I guess. On Sunday, he called Ryan’s plan “right-wing social engineering” and said he was opposed to it. Within hours he was getting hammered by just about every conservative luminary in the country and watching his presidential campaign go up in smoke. So first he tried to pretend that NBC host David Gregory had somehow tricked him, even though Gregory’s question was a pretty straightforward softball, and Gingrich’s answer was obviously a considered one. Then Gingrich explained that his language had probably been a wee bit “too strong.” Then he blamed the liberal media for taking his comments “out of context.” Then he suggested that his views were “evolving,” and the press really needed to keep up. Then he “clarified” that what he really supported was a voluntary version of the Ryan plan that could be implemented right now, instead of 10 years from now. Then he called Paul Ryan to apologize. Finally, tonight, having apparently convinced himself that 48 hours of abject abasement had literally erased what he said on Sunday, he declared that anyone who accurately quotes his Sunday statement in the future is a liar.

That’s impressive, even for Newt. But you know what’s really impressive? He’s demanding that his Sunday comments be officially declared oldthink even though he still doesn’t support Ryan’s plan. Chutzpah, baby!

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FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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