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Top 7 Lies of the First Debate

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“But on Medicare, for current retirees he’s cutting $716 billion from the program. Now, he says by not overpaying hospitals and providers, actually just going to them and saying we’re going to reduce the rates you get paid across the board, everybody’s going to get a lower rate. That’s not just going after places where there’s abuse, that’s saying we’re cutting the rates.” –Mitt Romney

President Obama and Congress did agree to slow the growth of Medicare by $716 billion. Note that, though — this was not a cut, this was a reduction in the rate of growth.

Medicare has been growing at a rapid and unsustainable rate. At some point, in order to preserve the program, cuts have to be made. Romney’s vice presidential candidate, Rep. Paul Ryan, acknowledged as much in his budget, which preserved those reductions to Medicare spending.

Moreover, while those cuts are aimed at providers, they do not reduce the care patients receive under Medicare. Patients will receive the same coverage as before.

Romney has proposed immediately restoring the $716 billion to Medicare — an odd position for someone demanding fiscal discipline. What would that do? Well, for one thing, it would cause the Medicare Trust Fund to run out of money by 2016. Absent new taxes to make up the difference, or draconian cuts in other programs, Romney’s plan would balloon the deficit while providing no additional coverage for seniors. It’s a classic lose/lose.

“Mr. Mr. President, you’re entitled, as the president, to your own airplane and to your own house, but not to your own facts (laughter) all right? I’m I’m not going to cut education funding. I don’t have any plan to cut education funding and grants that go to people going to college. I’m planning on continuing to grow, so I’m not planning on making changes there.” — Mitt Romney

Romney has not specifically called for education cuts, primarily because Romney has refused to go into specifics about his budget. Romney’s running mate, Paul Ryan, has put forth at least a quasi-specific budget, though, one which Romney had previously endorsed. That budget cut discretionary spending by 20 percent — spending which includes education.

Now, maybe Mitt Romney wouldn’t cut education. That would be swell. But then he would have to support more cuts from transportation, or agriculture, or Medicaid, or housing, or any of the other programs covered under discretionary spending.

Romney can claim that he isn’t going to cut education spending because he refuses to go into specifics, but that in and of itself is a dodge. Romney has endorsed cuts to the pool of money from which we fund education. If he wants to claim that he won’t cut education, he needs to explain what other programs he’d rather get the ax.

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414 comments

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6:08AM PST on Feb 1, 2013

Let's see if I understand this, a truth tester run by a liberal newspaper, guess reading the results of this blog only republicans lie. what BS.

4:22AM PST on Feb 1, 2013

Must add that I thought Romney was the rudest, most pompous, self important , inappropriate, ignorant bully I had ever witnessed. One can look "Presidential" without looking and acting like a petulant two year old. Disrespectful of a sitting President whether one likes him/her or not is not acceptable under any circumstances.

4:18AM PST on Feb 1, 2013

I think the best description ever is that if many Rep/Tea politicians open their mouths and make any sound. it's a lie. Sorry. The old honorable party is gone at least for now.

10:01AM PDT on Oct 18, 2012

Bravo Sylvia. I have read other posts by folks trying to quantify the Mitt mystique, but so far you have done the best.

4:59AM PDT on Oct 13, 2012

Thanks for the article.

6:17AM PDT on Oct 11, 2012

Sylvia M, you pretty much nailed it.

1:22PM PDT on Oct 10, 2012

Romney's always got that little smirk/smile on his face that reminds me of a man who is holding and smelling a baby with a badly soiled diaper and can't do anything about it. Oh, yeah, and this while trying to sell a used car with faulty transmission to a senior citizen.

10:36AM PDT on Oct 10, 2012

Apparently Mr. Romney's demeanor during the debate, including his outright lies left a winning impression on voters who were indecisive and according to the Pew Polls, Mr. Romney's is up a few percentage points. These undecided voters have apparently forgotten all of the lies he told the 18 months prior to the debate.

10:04AM PDT on Oct 10, 2012

Ingo the President will have far things to say that would correct his mischaracterizations than your obvious choice in candidates. Romney has told some 620 lies since January and scored high points for telling 28 lies in 37 minutes during the debate. So you are, as is typical of people who think like you Ingo, barking up the wrong tree.

5:53AM PDT on Oct 10, 2012

tell teh truth mr president

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