Virginia Democratic candidate gubernatorial Terry McAuliffe, former DNC chairman and Clinton moneyman, has had no shortage of past outspoken statements for Republicans looking to hammer him. But one hit from the Virginia Republican Party seems to be taking McAuliffe out of context.
A blog post on the Virginia Republican Party’s website for a research document entitled “Virginians Can’t Trust Terry McAuliffe on Energy Issues” says, “Notably, McAuliffe once said that if you lie about the little things, it makes it easier to lie about the big things,” with a hyperlink to a video of McAuliffe on YouTube narrating his 2007 book What a Party, in which he speaks the line.
“The exercise reinforces what Virginians are coming to learn and believe: Terry McAuliffe’s word has zero value. He will say and do anything to win office, and cannot be trusted,” the Virginia Republicans blog post adds.
But the hit is taken out of context from the book. The text from the book, shown below, shows that McAuliffe said his parents told him he always remembered the line. McAuliffe was using it to attack former Vice President Dick Cheney for saying he had not met John Edwards before their 2004 debate, when, in fact, they had indeed met.
“The first time I ever met you was when you walked on the stage tonight,” Cheney told Edwards during the debate.
Oh really? I was so proud of my team that night. Tracy Sefl was working on our D.C. war room and knew as soon as Cheney said that, he was lying. Phone calls and emails started coming in within seconds confirming that Cheney and Edwards had definitely met before. Tracy alerted some producers to Cheney’s clear falsehood, and worked with the rest of the crew in our war room to get a idea of Cheney meeting Edwards. Once the video was out there minutes later, prodding Technicolor proof, the story got even bigger, reminding people that as my parents always warned me, if you lie about the little things, it makes it easier to lie about the big things.
Update: The Cuccinelli campaign used the quote as well in a post.
Update A Virginia Republican Party spokesman told BuzzFeed: “The point is Terry McAuliffe admits that when you lie about the little things it makes it easier to lie about the big things. Given McAuliffe’s track record of misleading statements and abrupt policy reversals, voters have a right to be concerned he’s engaged in the very tactic he’s criticized others for employing.”