Thursday, December 17, 2015

Fact-Checking the GOP: Fiorina and the Time Traveling General

                                                          Getty Images
The Statement:

During Tuesday's Republican presidential primary debate, Carly Fiorina said:

"Petraeus, McCrystal, Mattis, Keane, Flynn, every single one of these generals I know, every one was retired early because they told President Obama things he didn't want to hear."

When reporters later asked her if, perhaps, she had mentioned some of the generals in error, particularly General Keane, she replied:

"No, I didn't misspeak.  He has been someone of great experience who has been highly critical of the way this administration has not taken threats seriously and unfortunately he hasn't been listened to and I would listen to him."

The Facts:

General John Keane:  that would be the same General John Keane who retired in 2003-- six years before President Obama took office.  

The retired General himself seemed a tad irritated with being dragged into Ms. Fiorina's fantasy world when he told Fox "News" that he had never spoken to President Obama.

"No, I have never spoken to the president.  That's not accurate, and I never served this administration.  I served the previous administration."

m'eye Verdict:

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that, in an effort to sound knowledgeable, Ms. Fiorina just started spewing the name of every general she could think of, (I'm surprised Eisenhower wasn't mentioned); but desperation and expediency is no excuse for homework and the truth.

While I'm not familiar with all the generals in Ms. Fiorina's list of presidential advisers, I'm going to start by pointing out that the first officer on her list, General Petreaus may have been forced to resign, but it had nothing to do with unwelcome advice.  He resigned after being exposed for sharing classified documents with his mistress/biographer.  I wouldn't count him as someone I'd trust to give good advice--on anything. 

But the real, unquestionable, loud and clear lie is Ms. Fiorina's insistence on General Keane's unfair ouster from the military.

When you use a man's name to bolster your own propaganda and the man himself comes forward and says you're wrong, there is no grey area.  Carly Fiorina earns 5 out of 5 Gops.   Her belief that, if she refuses to back down, her exposed lie will morph into the truth earns her a bonus Gop face palm.

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