The decline of Paul Ryan's credibility has been a slow-motion car wreck and it just won't end.
This week Lyin Ryan got himself his own "time calculator" online designed to turn your actual marathon time into "Ryan time" meaning a serious reduction turning your average run into an elite accomplishment. Once news outlets picked up on it - the punchline became complete.
Then a random article which mentioned that Ryan has spent his vacations doing some mountain climbing out in Colorado. Ryan said he'd made close to 40 climbs of Colorado's "Fourteener's" mountains. The statement turned into a full blown incident yesterday when journalists forced his campaign to state whether he'd climbed nearly 40 of the "Fourteener's" peaks (a feat he couldn't possibly have done) or made 40 climbs.
Ryan's spokesperson had to issue a statement saying he had made 40 climbs of some of the same peaks.
That Ryan turned out to have not been completely deceptive misses the larger point which is from now on Paul Ryan will be forced to prove every single thing he says he has done with a confirmed second source.
"Mr Ryan, how long did it take you to get here?...I'm sorry, can you prove that travel time?" For the "numbers" guy that has to be a particularly awful irony.
Then just before Bill Clinton stole Ryan's balls in Wednesday's convention speech ("It takes some brass for attacking a guy for doing what you did.") the Nation magazine revealed that Ryan had requested Obamacare funding for a clinic in Kenosha even though he has been one of the strongest proponents of repealing Obamacare.
Ryan doesn't just dislike Obamacare - he has said "Obamacare has no place in a free society." He has described Obamacare as a "gimmick" and "smoke and mirrors." Ryan said:
"We cannot afford to tinker around the edges of this fundamentally flawed law. Full repeal is a critical step towards true health care reform."That's a pretty damning statement...but not his most damning. "The biggest threat to Medicare is Obamacare" Ryan droned during the GOP convention.
So it's a mighty inconvenient detail that Ryan requested Obamacare funds to assist the Kenosha Community Heath Center's plans to open a clinic in Racine in December of 2010. Republicans have replied to his duplicity by stating that was simply Ryan's job - and they are right. They have stated this program started after all by George Bush - and that's not accurate. The funding for that program ended and Ryan was clearly asking for funds under the "gimmicky" America Health Care Act (Obamacare) - a program that he has explicitly said he would repeal.
It reminds us of Ryan's statements about Obama's stimulus having failed - only to discover he requested those same failed stimulus dollars saying they would create jobs in Wisconsin.
When he got caught - Ryan blamed his staff.
Ryan has said Obamacare exemplifies Obama's failed presidency and he would act immediately to repeal it - and now we discover he requested Obamacare dollars for a clinic he says is needed - but if given the chance he would presumably defund. It is also ironic that the Kenosha Community Health Clinic offers birth control, family planning, obstetrics and STD screenings - not a high priority on Ryan's list and certainly something he doesn't think government money should be funding.
Lyin Ryan has become more than just a punchline - it has fully defined the Ryan candidacy in a way he will never escape. For that, Wisconsin owes Mitt Romney a great deal of thanks.