Home » Ramaswamy Relies on Denialism When Challenged on Flip-Flopping Positions

Ramaswamy Relies on Denialism When Challenged on Flip-Flopping Positions

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In his breakout efficiency within the Republican major race, Vivek Ramaswamy has harnessed his populist bravado whereas ceaselessly and unapologetically contorting the reality for political acquire, a lot in the identical method that former President Donald J. Trump has mastered.

Mr. Ramaswamy’s sample of falsehoods has been the topic of intensifying scrutiny by the information media and, extra not too long ago, his G.O.P. opponents, who clashed with him typically in the course of the occasion’s first debate final Wednesday.

There are layers to Mr. Ramaswamy’s distortions: He has unfold lies and exaggerations on topics together with the 2020 election outcomes, the Jan. 6 assaults on the Capitol and local weather change. When challenged on these statements, Mr. Ramaswamy, a biotech entrepreneur who’s the primary millennial Republican to run for president, has in a number of situations claimed that he had by no means made them or that he had been taken out of context.

However his denials have repeatedly been refuted by recordings and transcripts from Mr. Ramaswamy’s interviews — or, in some instances, excerpts from his personal e book.

Listed here are some notable events when he sought to retreat from his previous statements or mischaracterized fundamental information:

At a breakfast spherical desk occasion organized by his marketing campaign on Friday in Indianola, Iowa, Mr. Ramaswamy recounted how he had visited the South Facet of Chicago in Might to advertise his immigration proposals to a largely Black viewers.

He boasted that nowhere had his concepts on the difficulty been extra enthusiastically acquired than within the nation’s third most populous metropolis, the place his look had adopted group protests over the housing of migrants in an area highschool.

“I’ve by no means been in a room extra in favor of my proposal to make use of the U.S. army to safe the southern border and seal the Swiss cheese down there than once I was in an almost all-Black room of supposedly largely Democrats on the South Facet of Chicago,” he stated.

However Mr. Ramaswamy’s retelling of the anecdote was sharply contradicted by the observations of a New York Occasions reporter who lined each occasions.

The reporter witnessed the viewers in Chicago pepper Mr. Ramaswamy about reparations, systemic racism and his opposition to affirmative motion. Immigration was barely talked about in the course of the formal program. It was so absent {that a} Ramaswamy marketing campaign aide at one level pleaded for questions on the difficulty. With that prompting, a single Republican marketing consultant stood as much as query Mr. Ramaswamy on his proposals.

In one of many extra heated exchanges of last week’s G.O.P. debate, former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey criticized Mr. Ramaswamy for lionizing Mr. Trump and defending his actions in the course of the Jan. 6 assault.

He sought to forged Mr. Ramaswamy as an opportunist who was attempting to pander to Mr. Trump’s supporters by attributing the riot to authorities censorship in the course of the 2020 election.

“In your e book, you had a lot various things to say about Donald Trump than you’re saying right here tonight,” Mr. Christie stated.

Mr. Ramaswamy bristled and stated, “That’s not true.”

However in his 2022 e book “Nation of Victims: Identity Politics, the Death of Merit, and the Path Back to Excellence,” Mr. Ramaswamy had harsh phrases for Mr. Trump and gave a extra somber evaluation of the violence.

“It was a darkish day for democracy,” Mr. Ramaswamy wrote. “The loser of the final election refused to concede the race, claimed the election was stolen, raised a whole lot of tens of millions of {dollars} from loyal supporters, and is contemplating working for govt workplace once more. I’m referring, in fact, to Donald Trump.”

When requested by The Occasions in regards to the excerpt, Mr. Ramaswamy insisted that his rhetoric had not advanced and identified that he had co-written an opinion column in The Wall Street Journal 5 days after the Jan. 6 assault that was essential of the actions of social media firms in the course of the 2020 election.

“Additionally what I stated on the time was that I actually thought what Trump did was regrettable,” he stated. “I’d have dealt with it very otherwise if I used to be in his footwear. I’ll remind you that I’m working for U.S. president in the identical race that Donald Trump is working proper now.”

Mr. Ramaswamy parsed his criticism of the previous president, nonetheless.

“However a nasty judgment shouldn’t be the identical factor as a criminal offense,” he stated.

In the course of the debate, Mr. Ramaswamy additionally sparred with former Vice President Mike Pence, whose senior aide and onetime chief of workers Marc Quick told NBC News the subsequent day that Mr. Ramaswamy was not a real populist.

“There’s populism after which there’s simply merely fraud,” he stated.

By blunting his message in regards to the former president’s accountability and casting himself as an outsider, Mr. Ramaswamy seems to be making a play for Mr. Trump’s base — and the G.O.P. front-runner has taken discover.

In a conversation on Tuesday with the conservative radio host Glenn Beck, Mr. Trump stated that he was open to deciding on Mr. Ramaswamy as his working mate, however he had some recommendation for him.

“He’s beginning to get on the market a bit bit,” Mr. Trump stated. “He’s getting a bit bit controversial. I acquired to inform him: ‘Be a bit bit cautious. Some issues it’s a must to maintain in just a bit bit, proper?’”

Since coming into the race, Mr. Ramaswamy has repeatedly floated conspiracy theories a couple of cover-up by the federal authorities in reference to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist assaults, a story seemingly tailor-made to members of the G.O.P.’s proper wing who’re deeply distrustful of establishments.

In a latest profile by The Atlantic, he instructed the journal, “I feel it’s legit to say what number of police, what number of federal brokers, had been on the planes that hit the dual towers.”

Whereas he acknowledged that he had “no cause” to consider that the quantity was “something apart from zero,” Mr. Ramaswamy urged that the federal government had not been clear in regards to the assaults.

“But when we’re doing a complete evaluation of what occurred on 9/11, we have now a 9/11 fee, completely that ought to be a solution the general public is aware of the reply to,” he stated.

But when Mr. Ramaswamy was asked to clarify those remarks by Kaitlan Collins of CNN two nights earlier than final week’s debate, he backtracked and accused The Atlantic of misquoting him.

“I’m telling you the quote is improper, really,” he stated.

Quickly after Mr. Ramaswamy claimed that his phrases had been twisted, The Atlantic released a recording and transcript from the interview that confirmed that he had certainly been quoted precisely.

When requested in an interview on Saturday whether or not the audio had undercut his argument, Mr. Ramaswamy reiterated his rivalry that the information media had typically misrepresented him.

“I feel there’s a cause why,” he stated, suggesting that his free-flowing method of talking broke the mould of so-called scripted candidates. “I simply don’t communicate like a conventional politician, and I feel the system shouldn’t be used to that. The political media shouldn’t be used to that. And that lends itself naturally then to being inaccurately portrayed, to being distorted.”

Mr. Trump’s allies have used comparable justifications when discussing the previous president’s falsehoods, citing his stream-of-consciousness talking fashion. His allies and supporters have admired his impulse to refuse to apologize or again down when referred to as out, an strategy Mr. Ramaswamy has echoed.

Mr. Ramaswamy stated that he was requested about Sept. 11 whereas discussing the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol and his repeated requires an accounting of what number of federal brokers had been within the area that day. His marketing campaign described The Atlantic’s recording as a “snippet.”

At the beginning of The Occasions’s dialog with Mr. Ramaswamy, he stated that he assumed that the interview was being recorded and famous that his marketing campaign was recording, too.

“We’re now doing mutually on the file, so simply F.Y.I.,” he stated.

No information outlet has been off-limits to Mr. Ramaswamy’s claims of being misquoted: This month, he denounced a New York Post headline that learn: “GOP 2024 candidate Vivek Ramaswamy ‘open’ to pardon of Hunter Biden.”

The Aug. 12 article cited an interview that The Publish had performed with him.

“After we have now shut down the F.B.I., after we have now refurbished the Division of Justice, after we have now systemically pardoned anybody who was a sufferer of a political motivated persecution — from Donald Trump and peaceable January 6 protests — then would I’d be open to evaluating pardons for members of the Biden household within the curiosity of transferring the nation ahead,” Mr. Ramaswamy was quoted as saying.

The following morning on Fox Information Channel, which, like The Publish, is owned by Information Corp, Mr. Ramaswamy told the anchor Maria Bartiromo that the report was erroneous.

“Maria, that was misquoted and purposeful opposition analysis with the headline,” he stated. “You understand how this recreation is performed.”

The Publish didn’t reply to a request for remark.

In an interview with The Occasions, Mr. Ramaswamy described the headline as “manufactured” and stated it was a part of “the ridiculous farce of this gotcha recreation.”

Mr. Ramaswamy clashed with Fox Information host Sean Hannity Monday evening when confronted with feedback he has made about support to Israel. Mr. Ramaswamy accused Mr. Hannity of misrepresenting his views.

“You stated support to Israel, our No. 1 ally, solely democracy within the area, ought to finish in 2028,” Mr. Hannity stated within the interview. “And that they need to be built-in with their neighbors.”

“That’s false,” Mr. Ramaswamy responded.

“I’ve a precise quote, would you like me to learn it?” Mr. Hannity requested.

Mr. Ramaswamy’s rhetoric about assist for Israel has shifted.

Throughout a marketing campaign occasion in New Hampshire earlier this month, Mr. Ramaswamy referred to as the deal to offer Israel with $38 billion over 10 years “sacrosanct.” However just a few weeks later in an interview with The Free Beacon, a conservative web site, he stated that he hoped that Israel would “not require and be depending on that very same stage of historic support or dedication from the U.S.” by 2028, when the deal expires.

Within the first few months of the coronavirus pandemic, the Masks for All Act, a invoice proposed by Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont that aimed to offer each particular person in america with three free N95 masks, appeared to obtain an unlikely endorsement on Twitter — from Mr. Ramaswamy.

“My coverage views don’t typically align with Bernie, however this strikes me as a smart concept,” he wrote in July 2020. “The fee is a tiny fraction of different much less compelling federal expenditures on COVID-19.”

Mr. Ramaswamy was responding to an opinion column written for CNN by Mr. Sanders, who’s a democratic socialist, and Andy Slavitt, who was later a high pandemic adviser to Mr. Biden. He stated they need to have picked somebody from the political proper as a co-author to indicate that there was a consensus on masks.

However when he was pressed this summer time by Josie Glabach of the Red Headed Libertarian podcast about whether or not he had ever supported Mr. Sanders’s masks measure, he answered no.

When requested by The Occasions for additional clarification, Mr. Ramaswamy acknowledged that he was an early supporter of sporting masks, however stated that he not believed that they prevented the unfold of the virus. He accused his political opponents of conflating his preliminary stance with assist for masks mandates, which he stated he had constantly opposed.

When he was requested by the conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt on his show in June whether or not he would pardon the previous U.S. intelligence contractor Edward J. Snowden for leaking paperwork about america authorities’s surveillance packages, Mr. Ramaswamy stated sure and invoked an surprising identify: the civil rights icon Rosa Parks.

He stated that Mr. Snowden, a fugitive, had demonstrated heroism to carry the federal government accountable.

“A part of what makes that danger admirable — Rosa Parks way back — is the willingness to bear punishment he already has,” he stated. “That’s additionally why I’d be sure that he was a free man.”

To Mr. Hewitt, the analogy was jarring.

“Wait, wait, wait, did you simply evaluate Rosa Parks to Edward Snowden?” he stated.

Mr. Ramaswamy instantly distanced himself from such a comparability, whereas then reinforcing it, suggesting that they’d each effectuated progress of a unique form.

“No, I didn’t,” he stated. “However I did evaluate the side of their willingness to take a danger to ensure that on the time breaking a rule that on the time was punishable.”



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