During Thursday night’s vice presidential debate, Paul Ryan warned Americans that “[a] debt crisis is coming. We can’t keep spending and borrowing like this. We can’t keep spending money we don’t have.” “[Obama's] economic agenda, more spending, more borrowing … It’s not working,” he declared.
Less than 24 hours later, however, the Romney/Ryan campaign is running an radio ad in Ohio criticizing the Obama administration of cutting wasteful federal military spending that the Pentagon does not want or need.
The radio commercial, titled “No Laughing Matter,” uses clips of Vice President Joe Biden saying, “We need — we don’t need more M1 tanks” and features a voiceover threatening that a reduction in government military spending could undermine job creation in the state:
VOICEOVER: “While the world grows more hostile and unstable every day, the White House wants to take away one of the most vital weapons in our arsenal–made right here in Ohio. Giving our troops the tools they need just isn’t a priority for Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Their own budget would shut down America’s only M-1 tank plant.” [...]
“As an Ohioan, you know that’s not just an attack against our ability to defend our freedom. It’s also an attack against our jobs and our way of life. Two attacks. Which one is worse?”
The Pentagon is “seeking to freeze refurbishment of the M1 from 2014 to 2017, so it can redesign the hulking, clanking vehicle from top to bottom.” Army’s chief of staff Gen. Raymond T. Odierno told Congress earlier this year “that it would be cheaper to shut down the tank plant and then restart it in 2017.”
But the tank manufacturer and a bipartisan group of lawmakers are lobbying to preserve the funding and the Romney/Ryan campaign is throwing its support behind the unnecessary spending. The position contradicts the GOP’s constant refrain of “you did build that” and undermines what Ryan told an audience in Ohio earlier this week, when he declared, government spending “doesn’t create more jobs, it does not create more prosperity.”