CNN contributor Alex Castellanos cited Mitt Romney's role with the 2002 Winter Olympics as evidence of the Republican candidate's consistency, even as Romney has campaigned against the very public investments that he once worked tirelessly to secure for those Olympics.
Weighing in on whether Romney shifted to the center during the October 3 presidential debate, Castellanos said: "The other Mitt Romney's that's always been there is this fix-it guy, this pragmatic businessman who transforms the Olympics, who invents a new way to do business in America." According to Castellanos, that Romney has always been there.
But in pointing to the Olympics, Castellanos picked a curious example to demonstrate Romney's consistency. After all, Romney took advantage of a sizable contribution from the federal government -- hundreds of millions of dollars -- to help transform the Salt Lake City Games in 2002. Taxpayers were so critical to helping Romney's bid to "save" the Olympics, he reportedly said, "We couldn't have done it without them. These are America's games."
Yet that same Romney -- the one Castellanos said has "always been there" -- has campaigned aggressively against taxpayer "bailouts," perhaps most notably in his criticism of the successful rescue of GM and Chrysler. An entire night of the Republican National Convention in August was centered around a dishonest attack on public infrastructure spending -- the very infrastructure spending the Romney who has "always been there" lobbied for to help build the Olympics.