Barack Obama Lies

Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 11:48 am
FactChecking Obama
August 29, 2008
He stuck to the facts, except when he stretched them.

We checked the accuracy of Obama's speech accepting the Democratic nomination, and noted the following:

Obama said he could “pay for every dime” of his spending and tax cut proposals “by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens.” That’s wrong " his proposed tax increases on upper-income individuals are key components of paying for his program, as well. And his plan, like McCain’s, would leave the U.S. facing big budget deficits, according to independent experts.
He twisted McCain’s words about Afghanistan, saying, “When John McCain said we could just 'muddle through' in Afghanistan, I argued for more resources.” Actually, McCain said in 2003 we “may” muddle through, and he recently also called for more troops there.

He said McCain would fail to lower taxes for 100 million Americans while his own plan would cut taxes for 95 percent of “working” families. But an independent analysis puts the number who would see no benefit from McCain’s plan at 66 million and finds that Obama’s plan would benefit 81 percent of all households when retirees and those without children are figured in.
Obama asked why McCain would "define middle-class as someone making under five million dollars a year"? Actually, McCain meant that comment as a joke, getting a laugh and following up by saying, "But seriously ..."
Obama noted that McCain’s health care plan would "tax people’s benefits" but didn’t say that it also would provide up to a $5,000 tax credit for families.

He said McCain, far from being a maverick who’s "broken with his party," has voted to support Bush policies 90 percent of the time. True enough, but by the same measure Obama has voted with fellow Democrats in the Senate 97 percent of the time.

Obama said "average family income" went down $2,000 under Bush, which isn't correct. An aide said he was really talking only about "working" families and not retired couples. And " math teachers, please note " he meant median (or midpoint) and not really the mean or average. Median family income actually has inched up slightly under Bush.

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama accepted his party's nomination Aug. 28, speaking before more than 84,000 people in Denver's Mile High football stadium. Some of his comments were worthy of a ref's yellow flag.

Not Quite Every Dime

Obama reassured voters that he can pay for all his spending proposals:

Obama: Now, many of these plans will cost money, which is why I’ve laid out how I’ll pay for every dime " by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens that don’t help America grow.

This is misleading. Even by his own campaign’s estimates, closing corporate loopholes and tax havens won’t pay for all of Obama’s new plans. In July, the campaign told the Los Angeles Times that they estimate the yearly cost of their proposed tax cuts at $130 billion. They put revenue from closing tax loopholes at just $80 billion. Obama also proposes to raise taxes to pre-Bush levels for families earning more than $250,000 a year and singles making more than $200,000, yielding additional revenue. But he didn't mention that in his speech.

But Obama’s claim is misleading on another level. According to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, "without substantial cuts in government spending" Obama’s plan " and McCain's, too " "would substantially increase the national debt over the next ten years." Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor told FactCheck.org that the Tax Policy Center's analysis "fails to take in account Senator Obama's spending cuts, including ending the Iraq war." That's true, but Obama's proposed cuts are dwarfed by the Tax Policy Center's projected deficits. Obama’s new spending programs might be completely offset by new revenue and spending cuts. But overall spending will still exceed overall revenue, and the nation would face at least 10 more years of annual deficits.

Afghan Muddle

Obama twisted McCain's words about Afghanistan, incorrectly implying that McCain saw no need for more troops there.

Obama: When John McCain said we could just “muddle through” in Afghanistan, I argued for more resources and more troops to finish the fight against the terrorists who actually attacked us on 9/11

Actually, McCain said in 2003 that the U.S. "may" muddle through, not that we could or would. He also said he was very concerned about a rise in al Qaeda activity there. He said then that he was "guardedly optimistic" that the government could handle it.

McCain, 2003: I think Afghanistan is dicey. I think that there are certain areas of the country, particularly along the Pakistani border, that are clearly not under the control of either Pakistan or the Afghan government. ... There has been a rise in al Qaeda activity along the border. There has been some increase in U.S. casualties. I am concerned about it, but I'm not as concerned as I am about Iraq today, obviously, or I'd be talking about Afghanistan. But I believe that if Karzai can make the progress that he is making, that " in the long term, we may muddle through in Afghanistan.

So I'm guardedly optimistic, but I am also realistic that the central government in Kabul has very little effect on the policies and practices of the warlords who control the surrounding areas.

Recently, however, both candidates have called for an increased troop presence in Afghanistan. In July, Obama proposed sending two more combat brigades, drawn down from Iraq. McCain immediately followed this with a call for three more brigades, but later clarified that some of those troops would be NATO forces. A McCain spokeswoman said that the U.S. would "contribute" troops to the increase under McCain's plan.

Tax Spin

Obama said: “I will cut taxes ... for 95 percent of all working families.” And he said McCain proposes “not one penny of tax relief to more than 100 million Americans,” a claim his running mate, Joe Biden, made the night before.

Obama is right about his plan's effect on working families. More broadly, though, the plan cuts taxes for 81.3 percent of all households in 2009, according to the Tax Policy Center. The TPC also says McCain’s tax plan would leave 65.8 million households without a cut, not 100 million.

The TPC’s calculations factor in what's in effect a hidden tax on individuals that results from taxing corporations. McCain proposes to lower the corporate income tax rate, and Obama proposes billions of dollars in increased corporate taxes in the form of “loophole closings.” Individuals wouldn’t experience those changes as an increased tax bill from the government, but both the Congressional Budget Office and TPC allocate all corporate tax to owners of capital rather than to consumers. That means rather than flowing through to consumers in the form of higher prices or lower wages, corporate tax changes would show up as higher or lower returns on investments, which typically come in the form of corporate dividends, and profits or losses from stock sales.

Only by ignoring the hidden benefit to individuals can McCain’s plan be said to produce no cut for 100 million households. According to a calculation the TPC did at FactCheck's request, 101.9 million see no benefit if the effects of a corporate reduction are set aside.

For the record, Obama aides say the indirect effect on holders of capital won't be as large as TPC says. "We dispute TPC's methodology here," says Brian Deese of the Obama campaign. He says several of the "loophole closers" that Obama is proposing won't affect corporations or are on offshore activity that will not directly filter through.

We'd also note that retirees would fare quite a bit less well than working families under Obama's tax plan: The TPC estimates that 32 percent of households with a person over age 65 would see a tax increase.

Rich Humor

Obama used a clumsy attempt at humor by McCain as evidence of his supposed insensitivity to middle-class economic realities:

Obama: Now, I don't believe that Senator McCain doesn't care what's going on in the lives of Americans; I just think he doesn’t know. Why else would he define middle-class as someone making under five million dollars a year?

What McCain actually said at the Saddleback Church forum on Aug. 16 was that he favors low taxes for all income levels. He drew a laugh, then said, "but seriously" as he struggled to make his point:

Pastor Rick Warren, Aug. 16: [G]ive me a number, give me a specific number - where do you move from middle class to rich?

McCain: I don't want to take any money from the rich " I want everybody to get rich. ... So, I think if you are just talking about income, how about $5 million?
But seriously, I don't think you can - I don't think seriously that - the point is that I'm trying to make here, seriously " and I'm sure that comment will be distorted " but the point is that we want to keep people's taxes low and increase revenues.

Health Care Half Truths

Obama gave only half the story when he described a feature of McCain's health care plan:

Obama: How else could he offer a health care plan that would actually tax people’s benefits...

McCain proposes to grant families up to a $5,000 tax credit to use for health benefits. The flip side of that proposal, which McCain seldom if ever mentions, is that the value of employer-sponsored benefits would also become taxable. Both candidates are trading in half-truths here; McCain talks only about the pleasurable side of his plan, while Obama's speech mentioned only the painful aspect. Neither gives a complete picture.

Party Hearties

Obama painted McCain as a Republican partisan who's supported the unpopular President Bush consistently:

Obama: And next week, we'll also hear about those occasions when he's broken with his party as evidence that he can deliver the change that we need. But the record's clear: John McCain has voted with George Bush 90 percent of the time.

It's true that McCain's voting support for Bush policies has averaged slightly above 89 percent since Bush took office, according to Congressional Quarterly’s vote studies. But it has ebbed and flowed. It reached a low of 77 percent in 2005. Last year it was 95 percent. By comparison, Obama's own record of supporting Bush policies has averaged slightly under 41 percent since the senator took office. However, Obama's voting record is no less partisan than McCain's. He has voted in line with his party an average of nearly 97 percent of the time. The truth is that neither candidate can claim a strong record of "breaking with his party" if Senate votes are the measure.

He Didn't Mean It

Obama also pulled some sleight of hand when he stated that "the average American family" saw its income "go down $2,000" under George Bush. That's not correct. Census figures show average family income went down $348.

As it turns out, when Obama said "average family income," he didn't mean "average," and he didn't mean "family," either. An Obama aide says he was really referring to median income " which is the midpoint " and not to the average. And Obama was talking only about "working families," not retired couples.

For all families, median family income actually inched up under Bush by $272.
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 11:53 am
While you were there gathering that one, did you overlook these?


GOP Convention Spin
September 3, 2008
Lieberman and Thompson make misleading claims about Obama on Day Two of the party in St. Paul.
Joe Lieberman and his former Senate colleague Fred Thompson both made misleading claims about Obama in their prime time GOP convention speeches on Tuesday. We've heard two of them before " many times.

Lieberman said Obama hadn't "reached across party lines" to accomplish "anything significant," though Obama has teamed with GOP Sens. Tom Coburn and Richard Lugar to pass laws enhancing government transparency and curtailing the proliferation of nuclear and conventional weapons.

Thompson repeated misleading claims about Obama's tax program, saying it would bring "one of the largest tax increases in American history." But as increases go, Obama's package is hardly a history-maker. It would raise taxes for families with incomes above $250,000. Most people would see a cut.

Lieberman also accused Obama of "voting to cut off funding for our American troops on the battlefield." But Obama's only vote against a war-funding bill came after Bush vetoed a version of the bill Obama had supported " and McCain urged the veto.



A New Stitch in a Bad Pattern
September 2, 2008
A McCain ad wrongly claims Obama plans "painful tax increases" for working families. And who's talking about deficits?
McCain's new ad puts another stitch in what we've called his pattern of deceit on Obama's tax plan. This one claims Obama and congressional Democrats plan to push forward "painful tax increases on working American families" and that they will bring about "years of deficits," "no balanced budgets" and "billions in new government spending."

The ad is plain wrong about higher taxes on working families. In fact, Obama's economic plan would produce a tax cut for the majority of American households, with middle-income earners benefiting most. As for "years of deficits," exactly the same claim could be made about McCain's program. It's unlikely either Obama or McCain would balance the budget, and both are projected to increase the debt by trillions.

Maverick Misleads
September 4, 2008
A McCain ad comparing Palin to Obama isn't all above board.
McCain's campaign launched a TV ad touting his running mate, Palin, and offering a comparison to Obama. Some of its claims are off the mark:

It says Obama "gave big oil billions in subsidies and giveaways," citing his votes for a 2005 energy bill. But the bill slightly raised taxes on the oil industry overall.

The ad plucked a positive blurb about Palin from an Associated Press article that, in fact, was very much a mixed review. The AP said she "brings an ethical shadow to the [Republican] ticket," for example.

The ad says Obama is the "most liberal" Senator. But the National Journal rated him the 16th most liberal in his first year and the 10th most liberal in his second. It rated his votes "most liberal" only in 2007, when he was busy campaigning and missed one-third of the votes on which the rating is based.

Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 11:54 am
A desperate attempt at slim pickings.

Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 12:02 pm
Well, I was going to post this in the Sarah Palin Lies discussion, but I figured it was best to have a different discussion about Obama. Pity you couldn't show the same courtesy.
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 12:07 pm
Pretty weak.

I especially like the one where Obama says McCain votes with Bush 90% of the time and the response is, "well it's actually just above 89%." Then it goes off into a rant about Obama's voting habits....
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 12:08 pm
Factcheck.org is now in the habit of ranting and spinning?

Someone should let them know about this new feature of theirs.
cicerone imposter
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 12:25 pm
McG, Quit making yourself look more like a fool; if you don't know the lies from McCain and Palin, you don't know what lies are. Honesty begins at home; pointing your fingers at others just lessens your own moral standing.
0 Replies
cicerone imposter
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 01:03 pm
The real question to McG is between the two parties running for president and vice president, who's "stretching of the truth and lies" are better or worse?

Did you watch the convention when Palin made her speech and the majority in that convention hall were vociferously shouting their approval while she lied? That's the party of the moral majority? Give me a break!
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 01:06 pm
@cicerone imposter,
cicerone imposter wrote:

Did you watch the convention when Palin made her speech and the majority in
that convention hall were vociferously shouting their approval while she lied?

What lie?
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 01:13 pm
You're hysterical.
Keep hope alive.
0 Replies
Robert Gentel
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 01:18 pm
There are already threads about the Republican lies, and theirs don't excuse Obama's in any way.

In any case, here's the Obama lie that I have the biggest qualm with:

In 2007 Bill Burton, an Obama campaign spokesman, said “To be clear: Barack will support a filibuster of any bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies.”

Then as soon as he had the nomination wrapped up on the strength of the left's vote he hung a hard right and not only didn't support a filibuster but voted for a bill giving the telecoms retroactive immunity.

It was a particularly ugly thing to do, because he rode to prominence on a wave of discontent with the fear mongering politics of nearly a decade, and then voted that way to avoid giving Republicans something to attack him with as soft on terror.

Shame on Obama for rising to prominence on promises to the left only to tack right when he secured the left's nomination. And shame on those who support this "to get elected", it's still just political pandering.
Robert Gentel
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 01:22 pm
@cicerone imposter,
cicerone imposter wrote:

Honesty begins at home; pointing your fingers at others just lessens your own moral standing.

cicerone imposter wrote:

The real question to McG is between the two parties running for president and vice president, who's "stretching of the truth and lies" are better or worse?

Which is it?
cicerone imposter
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 02:01 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Believe it or not; both.
Robert Gentel
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 02:05 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Then I guess it really shouldn't bother you to keep track of Obama and keep him honest. I'm sure you don't believe he's perfect and if his supporters don't keep him honest who will?

Overall I think he does well, and I like his nuance but when he panders I think it's important to call him out on it. Otherwise the support is for a cult of personality and not what he actually does. So when he does something like promise to oppose immunity for wiretapping while campaigning it's useful for his supporters to call him out on it for breaking his promise.
cicerone imposter
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 04:00 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Nothing wrong with calling Obama on anything that's not the truth or a stretch of the truth. That's not what I'm saying; I'm sure more will be exposed on both candidates during the next two months. Who doesn't want to know the truth about both candidates? We all have some level of myopia and bias at this point in the game. We must make our own subjective judgements about who is better qualified to be our president, and both sides will expose whatever they find; that's "normal" politics.
0 Replies
Reply Fri 5 Sep, 2008 03:52 pm
@Robert Gentel,
have to admit, he pissed me off with that one.

and there in lays my conundrum.

do i vote for the guys that piss me off a little, or do i vote for the guys that have, and continue to, piss me off a lot?

although i like mccain quite a bit and believe him to be a good guy, he's surrounded himself with people of the same mind as bush. and he's sidled up to "the agents of intolerance"; another negative for me.

so, while i will probably vote for obama and most likely have him piss me off, it wouldn't be the first time. reagan and clinton both got my vote and both really pissed me off at various times.

guess it comes with the right to vote.
0 Replies
Reply Mon 8 Sep, 2008 08:49 am
Thanks McGentrix - appreciate that you started a separate thread for it.

And I agree - if it's right to monitor the lies of McCain and Palin in threads of their own, there should be one for Obama as well.

Unfortunately I didnt see your thread at first, so instead I got knee-deep into the garbage Woiyo posted on his almost eponymous thread.
0 Replies
Reply Mon 8 Sep, 2008 09:09 am
No, ranting or spinning it is not.

I must admit I dont get the logic of their follow-through in that para though, and I'll remark on it also because I've seen the same nonsequitur elsewhere. At least it seems a nonsequitur to me.

Obama, factcheck.org says, "painted McCain as a Republican partisan who's supported the unpopular President Bush consistently"; he pointed out that in spite of McCain's habit of presenting himself as a maverick, "John McCain has voted with George Bush 90 percent of the time." Which is true, as the text then confirms.

Then follows a thought jump to argue that, well, Obama didnt break party ranks much either - even less, in fact. Which is also true, but is relevant to Obama's argument how?

Obama's point, as outlined by factcheck, after all is that McCains habit of voting with Bush means he can "not .. deliver the change that we need." Right. Change from the Bush politics. Change from the administration that has ruled the country for the past eight years. That's the change Obama is promising here.

Well, the Democratic Party opposed the Bush administration all this time. So if Obama voted with the Democratic party line, that just bolsters his claim that he is the one representing that change, right? How does that contradict his claim?

I dont think Obama claimed here that breaking with your party is a good thing just for the sake of doing it. He says that America needs change, and therefore you should throw out the Bush politics and bring in something very different. McCain doesnt bring anything different, because he's been supporting those very Bush politics all this time. Obama does bring change, because he's been opposing them. Just like his party, yes - he's part of the opposition party after all. I guess I just dont recognize the contradiction that factcheck.org seems to imply here.
0 Replies

Related Topics

Obama '08? - Discussion by sozobe
Let's get rid of the Electoral College - Discussion by Robert Gentel
McCain's VP: - Discussion by Cycloptichorn
Food Stamp Turkeys - Discussion by H2O MAN
The 2008 Democrat Convention - Discussion by Lash
McCain is blowing his election chances. - Discussion by McGentrix
Snowdon is a dummy - Discussion by cicerone imposter
TEA PARTY TO AMERICA: NOW WHAT?! - Discussion by farmerman
  1. Forums
  2. » Barack Obama Lies
Copyright © 2024 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 02/24/2024 at 03:03:23