Do facts matter? The early analysis of a debate is always superficial. Who was more aggressive? Who had the best zingers? Who sounded like they knew what they were talking about? It’s a lot easier to look at body language and mood and make a quick judgment than to actually dig into the facts.
Of course, facts matter. While a candidate may sound great telling a lie, if it’s a lie then…well…it’s a lie.
Tuesday’s debate featured no shortage of lies. Here are the top seven.
“I will not, under any circumstances, raise taxes on middle-income families. I will lower taxes on middle-income families. Now, you cite a study. There are six other studies that looked at the study you describe and say it’s completely wrong. I saw a study that came out today that said you’re going to raise taxes by $3 [thousand] to $4,000 on — on middle-income families. There are all these studies out there.” –Mitt Romney
Mitt Romney has claimed that his tax plan, such as it is, will not raise taxes on the middle class. Unfortunately, an analysis of the non-partisan Tax Policy Center has shown that Romney’s plan would cut taxes dramatically for the rich, but raise them for the poor and middle class. When Obama brought this up in the debate, Romney had a ready answer: Heck, sure, some studies say one thing, others say another, who can know? Trust me.
Should we trust Romney on this? In a word, no. Romney first advanced this argument a month ago, when they cited five studies that supported their argument. Unfortunately, two of those studies turned out to be not so much studies as Wall Street Journal editorials. The other three studies were by authors who were ideologically supportive of Romney. Politifact rated the claim that independent studies supported Romney’s tax plan as “mostly false.”
It’s quite simple: the only non-partisan analysis of Romney’s plan has shown that in order to break even, it would have to cut so many deductions that the middle class would end up paying more in taxes. Yes, Romney can claim some people agree with his plan — but that hardly makes the claim meaningful.
Image Credit: Donkey Hotey
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