When Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich unveiled his “Contract with America” in 1994, you might have been forgiven for not engaging your dial-up modem to fact check it. But in 2022 there’s no reason why, with the search capabilities of today’s internet and the widely available cheap stock images and video, the Republican Party employed a quote from an advert and attributed it to Abraham Lincoln and used video shot in Russia and Ukraine to represent scenes of American exceptionalism.
Maybe they should have stuck with their 2020 strategy of going platform-free. Apparently, the GOP’s “Commitment to America” does not include a commitment to either accuracy or American videographers.
There’s a reason why “Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality” doesn’t sound Lincolnesque — he never said or wrote it, according to Lincoln scholars consulted by the Daily Beast. If it sounds like advertising, that’s because it is — from a full-page ad for Lehman Brothers (which collapsed in the financial crisis of 2008) published in the Wall Street Journal in 1986.
But the GOP’s platform rollout also included a video that Huffington Post says is full of images from Russia and Ukraine.
Looked at another way, having a platform hoisted on the pillars of a fake Lincoln quote and a fake video probably is an accurate representation of where the GOP is today.