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ETCH A SKETCH MOMent:  Romney Flips The Script In First Debate

ETCH A SKETCH MOMent: Romney Flips The Script In First Debate

I am still a little dizzy from all the shaking up Mitt Romney did last night.  And, too exhausted to go through the entire debate and point out all the flip flops that happened over night.  I felt like shaking the TV and interrupting him to say, “hey, wait a second, you said ’47% of us’ are lame-os that you ‘aren’t going to worry about’ and you said ‘let Detroit go bankrupt’ and you said uninsured people ‘can just go to emergency rooms’ when they need healthcare and you said you’d ‘repeal bank regulations’ and you are going to propose a ’20% across the board cut in tax rates’  and…so much more…but, during the debate you said the exact opposite.”  HUH?! All of a sudden, you have a healthcare plan that allows people with pre-existing conditions to get insurance.  Where can I read that plan? I will give Romney this, he’s a good salesmen.  And, for those of us not paying attention, we may have bought it.

Unfortunately, the President didn’t call him out on any of it.  He should have turned the dial back and pointed out Mitt’s sketchy comments to all of us and defended his record.  He needed to play the game and push back – when Mitt talked about bringing money back to America, President Obama could have said, “great, you can start with yourmoney Mitt, bring it back from the Cayman Islands, Switzerland and Bermuda!”  Or, “hey, I didn’t double the deficit, I actually cut it, Mitt, but math is clearly not your strong suit.”

I know the President didn’t want to come across snarky and condescending, but come on?!  Governor Romney can’t keep getting away with saying things like that or people will start buying what he is selling.  And, if we are going to believe that the President is fighting for us every day, then we want to see it.  We know he isn’t the etch-a-sketch guy, or the pushy guy, but we hoped to see some of the chess playing guy - making smart, strategic moves that boxed in Romney.

So, now that America is turning off commercials and tuning in to MOMents like this, it’s up to us to fact check the debate to make sure we aren’t sold a lemon, because that would suck for American families!  Romney gets points for style, but the substance was sour.

MOMism:  ”Perception is reality.”  The way people feel matters.  If they feel like Romney was strong, assertive and presented the facts in the debate, then he wins.  But, next time, reality, authenticity and conviction need to be communicated by President Obama, then we will all win.  Come on Mr. President, it’s time for YOU to shake things up!

What’s your opinion MAMAs?

Some Media Comments:

CNN’s David Gergen: “Romney was just sort of flat out lying.”

Los Angeles Times: “The Romney campaign has refused to say which loopholes it would close, and Romney did not clear up the question Wednesday.” 

Bloomberg News: “Romney’s tax plan can’t add up.”

CNBC Fact Check: “Romney again tonight did not say specifically how he would pay for his proposed across the board tax cut.”

The Washington Post: “Mitt Romney needs to spend a little more time with his budget reports.”

Los Angeles Times: “Fact check: Romney repeats erroneous claims on healthcare”:

Chicago Sun-Times: “If, however, you score Wednesday’s debate on substance — accurate facts and honest arithmetic — Obama more than held his own.”

Fact Check‏@factcheckdotorgRomney says he will pay for $5T tax cut without raising deficit or raising taxes on middle class. Experts say that’s not possible….

Rachel Weiner ‏@rachelweinerwp Fact Checker: Romney says “six other studies” have found his plan can be revenue neutral, but he’s wrong about that. http://wapo.st/UGjQeh

Matt Yglesias ‏@mattyglesias Romney’s tax plan is basically 2+2=5.

Los Angeles Times ‏@latimes Fact check: Romney’s tax claims challenged by nonpartisan report: http://lat.ms/RBZyUT (via @LisaMascaroinDC)

PolitiFact ‏@politifact We looked at whether five studies back up Romney’s tax plan. Mostly False. Our review: http://ow.ly/ecKPd  #debate

PolitiFact @politifact  Reputable study found Romney’s tax plan can’t reduce overall rates AND raise same revenues. Our check: http://ow.ly/ecpR4  #debate

PolitiFact @politifact Is Romney plan for future Medicare a voucher system? Mostly True. http://ow.ly/ecMuu  #debate

Fact Check‏@factcheckdotorgRomney said Obama “cut” Medicare by $716B but cuts in the future growth of spending prolong life of Medicare. http://ow.ly/ecMJ8

PolitiFact @politifact From the archives: Rick Santorum said Romney adviser admits Romneycare was blueprint for Obamacare. Mostly True. http://ow.ly/ecNPm

PolitiFact ‏@politifactObamacare is a government takeover of health care? That was the 2010 Lie of the Year. http://ow.ly/ecO9V  #debate

Michael Crowley ‏@CrowleyTIME Romney closes with pretty dishonest warning about defense cuts

Jonathan Cohn ‏@CitizenCohnSigh. Romney not telling the truth here. Pre-existing conditions NOT covered under his plan http://www.tnr.com/blog/plank/107049/romney-pre-existing-condition-obamacare-repeal-gregory-meet-the-press …

Ezra Klein ‏@ezrakleinAround 89 million Americans would likely be left out of Romney’s “preexisting conditions plan,” such as it is. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/wp/2012/09/10/who-would-be-left-out-of-romneys-preexisting-conditions-plan-about-89-million-americans/ …

Chicago Sun-Times Editorial: Editorial: Romney wins on style, Obama on facts

Los Angeles Times: Fact Check: Romney’s tax claims challenged by non-partisan report

Bloomberg: Romney Tax Plan Needs Growth to Add Up: Reality Check

Washington PostRomney off on deficits

Los Angeles Times: Fact check: Romney repeats erroneous claims on healthcare

Talking Points Memo: Romney Backs Away From Own Tax Plan

Obama Campaign Fact Check:

ROMNEY LIE #1: ROMNEY SAYS HIS FIVE POINT PLAN WILL LEAD US TO PROSPERITY, BUT INDEPENDENT ANALYSTS SAY IT WOULD ACTUALLY HURT THE ECONOMY

Romney: “My Plan Has Five Basic Parts. … I’ll Restore The Vitality That Gets America Working Again.” [Romney, Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Washington Post Headline: “Economists: Romney’s Ideas Wouldn’t Fix Short-Term Crisis, And Could Make Things Worse.”  [Greg Sargent, Washington Post, 6/7/12] 

Senior Adviser At Moody’s Analytics Mark Hopkins: Romney’s Policies “Would Do More Harm In The Short Term” And “If We Implemented All Of His Policies, It Would Push Us Deeper Into Recession And Make The Recovery Slower.” Asking whether Romney’s economic policy ideas would create jobs in the short-term: “‘On net, all of these policies would do more harm in the short term,’ added Mark Hopkins, a senior adviser at Moody’s Analytics. ‘If we implemented all of his policies, it would push us deeper into recession and make the recovery slower.’” [Greg Sargent, Washington Post, 6/7/12]

Nobel Prize-Winning Economist Joseph Stiglitz: “The Romney Plan Is Going To Slow Down The Economy, Worsen The Jobs Deficit And Significantly Increase The Likelihood Of A Recession.” [Bloomberg, 6/5/12]

 

ROMNEY LIE #2: ROMNEY SAID HIS TAX PLAN WOULDN’T HURT THE MIDDLE CLASS, BUT IT WILL RAISE TAXES ON THE MIDDLE CLASS WHILE CUTTING THEM FOR MULTIMILLIONAIRES AND BILLIONAIRES

Romney: “I Will Not, Under Any Circumstances, Raise Taxes On Middle-Income Families.” ROMNEY: “And number three, 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 $3,000 to $4,000 on middle-income families.“ [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

If Romney’s Tax Plan Was Paid For, Families With Kids Who Make Less Than $200,000 Would See An Average Tax Increase Of $2,041. [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, p. 18, 8/1/12]

If Romney’s Tax Plan Was Paid For, The Top 0.1% Would See An Average Tax Cut Of $246,652. [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, p. 19, 8/1/12]

Reuters Headline: “Romney Tax Plan Helps Rich, Hurts Middle Class-Study.” [Reuters, 8/1/12]

Boston Globe Headline: “Mitt Romney’s Tax Plan Would Offer Big Cuts To Millionaires, Raise Taxes On Middle Class, Brookings Analysts Say.” [Boston Globe, 8/1/12]

Washington Post Editorial: The Tax Policy Center Found That Under The Romney Plan “Even If Every Loophole For The Top Brackets Were Closed, There Wouldn’t Be Enough Revenue. The Middle Class Would Have To Pay More.” “The Tax Policy Center (TPC), a joint venture of the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution, examined Mr. Romney’s claim and found that, even if every loophole for the top brackets were closed, there wouldn’t be enough revenue. The middle class would have to pay more.” [Editorial, Washington Post, 8/21/12]

ROMNEY LIE #3: ROMNEY WOULDN’T REDUCE TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY – BUT IN FACT, THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT HIS PLAN DOES

Romney: “I’m Not Going To Reduce The Share Of Taxes Paid By High-Income People.” ROMNEY: “First of all, I don’t have a $5 trillion tax cut. I don’t have a tax cut of a scale that you’re talking about. My view is that we ought to provide tax relief to people in the middle class. But I’m not going to reduce the share of taxes paid by high-income people. High-income people are doing just fine in this economy. They’ll do fine whether you’re president or I am.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

·         Reuters Headline: “Romney Tax Plan Helps Rich, Hurts Middle Class-Study.” [Reuters, 8/1/12]

·         Boston Globe Headline: “Mitt Romney’s Tax Plan Would Offer Big Cuts To Millionaires, Raise Taxes On Middle Class, Brookings Analysts Say.” [Boston Globe, 8/1/12]

·         Washington Post Editorial: The Tax Policy Center Found That Under The Romney Plan “Even If Every Loophole For The Top Brackets Were Closed, There Wouldn’t Be Enough Revenue. The Middle Class Would Have To Pay More.” “The Tax Policy Center (TPC), a joint venture of the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution, examined Mr. Romney’s claim and found that, even if every loophole for the top brackets were closed, there wouldn’t be enough revenue. The middle class would have to pay more.” [Editorial, Washington Post, 8/21/12]

If Romney’s Tax Plan Was Paid For, The Top 0.1% Would See An Average Tax Cut Of $246,652. [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, p. 19, 8/1/12]

·         If Romney’s Tax Plan Was Paid For, Families With Kids Who Make Less Than $200,000 Would See An Average Tax Increase Of $2,041. [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, p. 18, 8/1/12]

ROMNEY LIE #4: ROMNEY CLAIMS HIS TAX PLAN ISN’T LIKE ANYTHING WE’VE TRIED BEFORE – BUT IT’S THE SAME TRICKLE-DOWN SCHEME WE’VE SEEN BEFORE

Romney: My Tax Plan “Is Not Like Anything That’s Been Tried Before.” ROMNEY: “My plan is not like anything that’s been tried before. My plan is to bring down rates, but also bring down deductions and exemptions and credits at the same time so the revenue stays in, but that we bring down rates to get more people working.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Romney On Making The Bush Tax Cuts Permanent: “I Will Make Today’s Low Individual Tax Rates Permanent.” Romney: “As president, I will firmly oppose tax increases. I will make today’s low individual tax rates permanent, cut business taxes, and make the tough calls necessary to bring spending back in line with what we can afford. I will cap spending at 20% of GDP by 2016, which will require between $400 billion and $500 billion in cuts.” [Romney op-ed, USA Today, 2/8/12]

·         Romney’s 59 Point Plan: Make The Bush Tax Cuts Permanent. “As with the marginal income tax rates, Mitt Romney will seek to make permanent the lower tax rates for investment income put in place by President Bush.” [Romney’s Plan For Jobs And Economic Growth, 9/6/11 

Washington Post’s Ezra Klein: “Romney Can’t Explain How His Policies Differ From That Of George W. Bush.” “Lower taxes, fewer regulations, more domestic energy production, promises of deficit reduction that are quickly overwhelmed by increased defense spending and reduced tax revenues, and glossy rhetoric about economic freedom pretty much defined the Bush administration’s economic policy. And how did that economic policy work out? … Bush has the worst record since Herbert Hoover. Every single measure we might want to track — jobs, growth, median household income, poverty, uninsurance, new firm creation, participation in the labor force — goes in the wrong direction. And yet Romney can’t explain how his policies differ from that of George W. Bush. One of my frustrations with campaign coverage is there’s a tendency to look at substantive deficiencies in ideas as political problems. So this gets talked about as a messaging issue: Romney needs a better answer to the question, ‘how do you differ from Bush?’ But it’s not a messaging problem. Romney doesn’t need a better answer to how are your policies different than Bush’s. He needs policies that are actually different.” [Ezra Klein, Washington Post, 7/27/12]

Romney’s Tax Proposal Is The “Bush Tax Cuts On Steroids” Cutting Taxes For Americans Making Over $1 Million And Raising Taxes On Those Making Less Than $10,000. “The simplest way to conceive of Mitt Romney’s tax proposal is the Bush Tax Cuts on steroids. It’s not sweeping tax reform. The rates don’t change. The deductions stay put. Instead, it’s a time machine back to 2008 … with a big pair of scissors to make some additional cuts.The GOP frontrunner would permanently extend the Bush/Obama tax cuts in addition to eliminating both the estate tax and the tax on capital gains for ‘non-rich’ families. He would not extend the majority of the tax cuts and tax hikes passed in the Obama administration…  For a family making less than $10,000 a year, the average tax bill would go up by $112. For a family making more than $1,000,000 a year, the average tax bill would go down by about $145,000.” [Thompson, Atlantic, 1/5/12]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities: Romney’s New Tax Cuts Would Cost $4.9 Trillion Over A Decade, On Top Of The Cost Of Extending The Bush Tax Cuts. “The Tax Policy Center estimates that the Romney tax plan would lose about $480 billion in tax revenue in calendar year 2015, beyond the revenues losses inherent in maintaining current policy (such as continuing all of the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts).  Over the 2014-2022 period, that implies a total reduction in revenues of about $4.9 trillion, relative to current tax policy.” [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/21/12]

ROMNEY LIE #5: ROMNEY’S PLAN WOULDN’T AFFECT CURRENT SENIORS’ SOCIAL SECURITY, BUT HIS TAX PLAN WOULD TAX SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS

Romney Said His Plan Wouldn’t Change Social Security For Current Retirees. Romney: “And the answer is neither the president nor I are proposing any changes for any current retirees or near retirees, either to Social Security or Medicare. So if you’re 60 or around 60 or older, you don’t need to listen any further.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Tax Policy Center: Assuming Romney Pays For His Tax Plan By Cutting Deductions Would Put On The Table Provisions Like The “The Partial Exclusion Of Social Security Benefits.” [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, 8/1/12]

Under Romney’s Plan, If Tax Rates Were Cut 20% Across The Board And Deductions For The Middle Class Were Cut By 58% — The Limitation Of The Exclusion For Social Security Benefits Would Result In An Average Tax Increase Of $458. In 2010, the average tax benefit from untaxed Social Security benefits was $987. Because Romney cuts taxes across the board by 20%, the value of the tax benefit would be $789. If Romney cuts deductions by 58% for those making less than $200,000, that means he would be reducing the average tax benefit from the exclusion from $789 to $331, the equivalent of a $458 tax increase.

·         2010: The Average Benefit Received From Untaxed Social Security Benefits Was $987.In 2010, there were 29,239,000 income tax returns with untaxed Social Security and Railroad Retirement Benefits from individuals making $200,000 or less – for a total of and $28,861,000,000 in total benefits. That means the average benefit was $987. [Joint Committee on Taxation, Estimates Of Federal Tax Expenditures For Fiscal Years 2011-2015, Table 3 – Distribution by Income Class of Selected Individual Tax Expenditure Items, at 2010 Rates and 2010 Income Levels, p. 51, 1/17/12]

·         Romney Proposed Cutting All Marginal Tax Rates By 20 Percent. [Tax Policy Center, The Romney Plan (updated), 3/1/12] 

·         Tax Policy Center: Assuming Romney Pays For His Tax Plan By Limiting Deductions Would Require Eliminating 58 Percent Of Total Tax Deductions For Households Making Less Than $200,000. [Tax Policy Center, On The Distributional Effects Of Base-Broadening Income Tax Reform, p. 6, 8/1/12]

ROMNEY LIE #6: ROMNEY SAID HIS TAX PLAN WON’T COST $5 TRILLION, BUT HIS PLAN HAS BEEN SCORED AT $5 TRILLION – IN ADDITION TO THE COST OF EXTENDING THE BUSH TAX CUTS

Romney: “I’m Not Looking For A $5 Trillion Tax Cut.” ROMNEY: “So if the tax plan he described were a tax plan I was asked to support, I’d say absolutely not. I’m not looking for a $5 trillion tax cut. What I’ve said is I won’t put in place a tax cut that adds to the deficit. That’s part one. So there’s no economist that can say Mitt Romney’s tax plan adds $5 trillion if I say I will not add to the deficit with my tax plan.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

·         Romney: “I’m Not In Favor Of A $5 Trillion Tax Cut. That’s Not My Plan.” ROMNEY: “I think first of all, let me — let me repeat — let me repeat what I said. I’m not in favor of a $5 trillion tax cut. That’s not my plan. My plan is not to put in place any tax cut that will add to the deficit. That’s point one. So you may keep referring to it as a $5 trillion tax cut, but that’s not my plan.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities: Romney’s New Tax Cuts Would Cost $4.9 Trillion Over A Decade, On Top Of The Cost Of Extending The Bush Tax Cuts. “The Tax Policy Center estimates that the Romney tax plan would lose about $480 billion in tax revenue in calendar year 2015, beyond the revenues losses inherent in maintaining current policy (such as continuing all of the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts). Over the 2014-2022 period, that implies a total reduction in revenues of about $4.9 trillion, relative to current tax policy.” [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/21/12]

ROMNEY LIE #7: HE CLAIMED HIS PLAN WOULDN’T ADD TO THE DEFICIT 

Romney: “My Number One Principle Is There’ll Be No Tax Cut That Adds To The Deficit.” ROMNEY: “And finally, with regards to that tax cut, look, I’m not looking to cut massive taxes and to reduce the — the revenues going to the government. My — my number one principle is there’ll be no tax cut that adds to the deficit. I want to underline that — no tax cut that adds to the deficit.” [Romney, Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities: Romney’s New Tax Cuts Would Cost $4.9 Trillion Over A Decade, On Top Of The Cost Of Extending The Bush Tax Cuts. “The Tax Policy Center estimates that the Romney tax plan would lose about $480 billion in tax revenue in calendar year 2015, beyond the revenues losses inherent in maintaining current policy (such as continuing all of the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts). Over the 2014-2022 period, that implies a total reduction in revenues of about $4.9 trillion, relative to current tax policy.” [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/21/12]

Tax Policy Center: Romney’s Tax Plan Would Drive Up The Deficit By $480 Billion In 2015 Alone. “Because Gov. Romney has not specified how he would increase the tax base, it is impossible to determine how the plan would affect federal tax revenues or the distribution of the tax burden. TPC has analyzed instead the effects of the specified proposals in the Romney plan. These estimates provide a guide as to how much the base broadening would need to raise taxes in different income groups to achieve the plan’s targets… in the absence of such base broadening, TPC estimates that on a static basis, the Romney plan would lower federal tax liability by about $900 billion in calendar year 2015 compared with current law, roughly a 24 percent cut in total projected revenue. Relative to a current policy baseline, the reduction in liability would be about $480 billion in calendar year 2015.” [Tax Policy Center, The Romney Plan (updated), 3/1/12]

ROMNEY LIE #8: ROMNEY CLAIMED THERE ARE SIX STUDIES THAT CALLED HIS PLAN REVENUE NEUTRAL BUT FACT CHECKERS SAY HE’S FLAT WRONG

Romney At Denver Debate: “Now, You Cite A Study, There’s 6 Other Studies That Looked At The Study Described And Say It’s Completely Wrong.” “Now, you cite a study, there’s 6 other studies that looked at the study described and say it’s completely wrong.   I saw a study that came out today that said you’re going to raise taxes by 3 to $4,000 on middle class families.  There are all of these studies out there but the bottom line is want to the bring down rates, I want to bring rates down at the same time lower deductions and exceptions and credits anding so forth we keep getting the revenue we need and you think well why lower the rates and the reason is because small business pays that individual rate.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler: “Romney Has Countered That “Six Other Studies” Have Found That The Plan Can Be Revenue Neutral, But He’s Wrong About That.” Romney has countered that “six other studies” have found that the plan can be revenue neutral, but he’s wrong about that. Those studies actually do not provide much evidence that Romney’s proposal — as sketchy as it is — would be revenue neutral without making unrealistic assumptions. [Glenn Kessler, Washington Post, 10/3/12]

ROMNEY LIE #9: ROMNEY ARGUED THAT HIS PLAN WOULDN’T CUT EDUCATION, BUT IT COULD MEAN A CUT OF MORE THAN $115 BILLION OVER THE NEXT DECADE

Romney: “All Right, I’m Not Going To Cut Education Funding. I Don’t Have Any Plan To Cut Education Funding And — And Grants That Go To People Going To College.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

If Cuts Were Applied Across The Board, Ryan’s Budget Would Cut “The Department Of Education … By More Than $115 Billion Over A Decade.” “Yesterday, House Republicans released their budget resolution for FY 2013 … On top of the roughly $1 trillion in cuts in the Budget Control Act, it would be difficult to overstate the radicalism of the domestic cuts proposed by the House budget resolution. In 2013, it would cut annual non-defense funding by 5 percent. By 2014, the resolution would cut this funding by 19 percent in purely nominal terms… The Department of Education would be cut by more than $115 billion over a decade.” [Jeff Zients, Acting Director of the Office of Management and Budget, WH.gov, 3/21/12]

If Cuts Were Applied Across The Board, The Ryan Budget Would Cut Elementary And Secondary Education Funding By $4.8 Billion. According to the White House, cuts to elementary and secondary education, special education funding would total $4,847,000,000 under the Ryan Budget. [White House, 4/6/12]

If Cuts Were Applied Across The Board, The Ryan Budget Would Slash Education, Meaning “9.6 Million Students Would See Their Pell Grants Fall By More Than $1,000 In 2014, And, Over The Next Decade, Over One Million Students Would Lose Support Altogether.” “Yesterday, House Republicans released their budget resolution for FY 2013… On top of the roughly $1 trillion in cuts in the Budget Control Act, it would be difficult to overstate the radicalism of the domestic cuts proposed by the House budget resolution. In 2013, it would cut annual non-defense funding by 5 percent. By 2014, the resolution would cut this funding by 19 percent in purely nominal terms… 9.6 million students would see their Pell Grants fall by more than $1000 in 2014, and, over the next decade, over one million students would lose support altogether.” [Jeff Zients, Acting Director of the Office of Management and Budget, WH.gov, 3/21/12]

National Education Association Estimated That Under The Ryan Plan 200,000 Children Would Be Cut From Head Start In 2014 And More Than 2 Million Children Would Lose Opportunities To Attend Head Start In The Next Decade. “The plan, proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who chairs the House Budget Committee, would eliminate slots for about 200,000 children in 2014, according to an analysis by the National Education Association. Over the next decade, the NEA estimates, more than two million children would lose opportunities to attend Head Start centers as a result of the cuts.” [Huffington Post, 3/29/12]

ROMNEY LIE #10: HE CLAIMS HIS ENERGY PLAN WILL MAKE NORTH AMERICA ENERGY INDEPENDENT, BUT IT’S TOO DEPENDENT ON OIL AND DRILLING

Romney: “I Want To Get America And North America Energy Independent So We Can Create Those Jobs.” ““And, by the way, I like coal. I’m going to make sure we can continue to burn clean coal. People in the coal industry feel like it’s getting crushed by your policies. I want to get America and North America energy independent so we can create those jobs.” [Mitt Romney, First Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

Romney’s Energy Plan “Is Basically All About Oil, Coal And Gas.”  “No sooner had Mitt Romney released his long-awaited energy policy Aug. 23 than a small army of reporters and pundits started drilling into the details and coming up with barely a kilowatt of vision or substance. The plan is basically all about oil, coal and gas.” [K Kaufmann, Desert Sun, 9/1/12]

Washington Post: “Romney’s Plan Spends A Lot Of Time Talking About Drilling” But “Energy Independence Will Require More Than Just Drilling It Will Also Depend On Efficiency Standards That Romney Has Opposed.” “Energy independence will require more than just drilling — it will also depend on efficiency standards that Romney has opposed. Mitt Romney’s plan spends a lot of time talking about drilling. But it’s worth noting that both the EIA and Citigroup credit the Obama administration’s new fuel-economy standards for cars and light trucks as a major part of America’s lurch toward energy independence. By 2025, the increased CAFE standards are expected to reduce U.S. oil consumption by about 2.2 million barrels per day. Without those rules, energy independence looks nearly impossible. And Romney, for his part, has pledged to overturn those fuel-economy rules.” [Wonk Blog, Washington Post, 8/23/12]

Associated Press Fact Check: Romney Opposes Curbs On Energy Demand – Namely Higher Mileage Standard – But “Independent Energy Analysts Say Supply And Demand Both Have To Be In The Equation For Energy Independence To Be Achieved.” “Romney’s steps include deficit cuts that he has not spelled out, and a march toward energy independence that past presidents have promised but not delivered. Unlike Obama, he does not support curbs on demand; namely the much higher mileage standards that are coming into effect. Romney proposes boosting supplies, with freer access to development of oil, gas, coal and more. Independent energy analysts say supply and demand both have to be in the equation for energy independence to be achieved.” [Fact Check, Associated Press, 8/31/12]

New York Times’ Robert Semple, Jr.: American Energy Independence Would Depend On Alternatives And Efficiency, Neither Addressed In Romney’s Plan. “Let’s start first with the premise of the plan, which is also its promise: that energy independence is an achievable goal for America by 2020.  Presidents have been talking about energy independence since Richard Nixon and haven’t come close. The simple truth, as President Obama has recognized, is that a country that holds less than 3 percent of the world’s reserves but consumes more than 20 percent of the world’s supply cannot drill its way to energy independence. More production will help, but true independence from foreign imports – not to mention fewer greenhouses gases and a safer climate, a subject Mr. Romney never touches upon – will depend on developing alternative fuels and more efficient vehicles.” [Robert Semple, Jr. op-ed, New York Times, 8/24/12]

ROMNEY LIE #11: ROMNEY’S PLAN WILL “DEAL” WITH PEOPLE WITH PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS, BUT HE’D REPEAL OBAMACARE AND IT’S PROTECTIONS FOR PEOPLE WITH PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS, LETTING INSURANCE COMPANIES DISCRIMINATE

Romney Said His Plan “Deals With People With Pre-Existing Conditions.” ROMNEY: “And with regards to health care, you had remarkable details with regards to my pre-existing condition plan. You obviously studied up on — on my plan. In fact, I do have a plan that deals with people with pre-existing conditions. That’s part of my health care plan. And what we did in Massachusetts is a model for the nation state by state. And I said that at that time.” [Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12]

·         Romney Suggested Uninsured People With Pre-Existing Conditions Should Not Be Able To Get Health Insurance: “We Can’t Play The Game Like That.” Jay: “So you would make the law stand for children and people with pre-existing conditions?” Romney: “People with pre-existing conditions, as long as they have been insured before, they are going to be able to continue to have insurance.” Leno: “Suppose they haven’t been insured.” Romney: “Well, if they, if they are 45 years old and they show up and say I want insurance because I have heart disease, it’s like, Hey guys. We can’t play the game like that. You’ve got to get insurance when you are well and then if you get ill, you are going to be covered.”  [Romney, Tonight Show With Jay Leno, 3/27/12]

·         Romney In Discussing What He Would Replace Obamacare With: “People With Pre-Existing Conditions, As Long As They Have Been Insured Before, They Are Going To Be Able To Continue To Have Insurance.” [Romney, Tonight Show With Jay Leno, 3/27/12] 

New York Magazine’s Jonathan Chait:  “In Other Words, It’s Not True. Romney Doesn’t Have A Plan, Or Even A Vague Outline Of A Plan, To Cover People With Preexisting Conditions.”  [Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine, 9/10/12]

Ending Pre-Existing Conditions Through “Continuous Coverage” Means Insurers Could Refuse To Cover Some Individuals. “Policy-wise, however, there’s a significant amount of space between ‘ending pre-existing conditions’ and ‘ending pre-existing conditions [with continuous coverage].’ Under the former scheme, insurers cannot deny coverage to an individual — no matter what. Under the latter, insurers can, in certain situations, refuse to cover some individuals.” [Wonk Blog, Washington Post, 9/9/12] 

Washington Post: Romney’s Support Of Coverage For Preexisting Conditions For People Who Have Had Continuous Coverage “Means That Those Who Go A Month Or Two Without Coverage Could Later Be Denied Insurance For A Medical Condition.” “Around 10 p.m., the Romney camp had circled back to the same position it held back in March: that the governor supports coverage for preexisting conditions for people who have had continuous coverage. I wrote a bit yesterday about why this is different than ending preexisting conditions altogether. In short, it means that those who go a month or two without coverage could later be denied insurance for a medical condition.” [Wonk Blog, Washington Post, 9/9/12]

New York Daily News Headline: “Mitt Romney: Insurance Companies Should Be Allowed To Deny Coverage For Pre-Existing Conditions.” [New York Daily News, 6/14/12]

Huffington Post Headline: “Mitt Romney’s Health Care Plan Would Not Prohibit Discrimination Based On Pre-Existing Conditions.” [Sam Stein, Huffington Post, 6/13/12] 

ROMNEY LIE #12: ROMNEY CLAIMED HE WAS A BIPARTISAN GOVERNOR, BUT IN REALITY HE BARELY TOOK THE TIME WORK WITH DEMOCRATS IN THE LEGISLATURE

Romney At Denver Debate: “I Had The Great Experience – It Didn’t Seem Like It At The Time – Of Being Elected In A State Where My Legislature Was 87 Percent Democrat […] I Figured Out From Day One I Had To Get Along And I Had To Work Across The Aisle.” LEHRER: “Many of the legislative functions of the federal government right now are in a state of paralysis as a result of partisan gridlock. If elected, in your case, if re-elected, in your case, what would you do about that? Governor?” ROMNEY: “Jim, I had the great experience — it didn’t seem like it at the time — of being elected in a state where my legislature was 87 percent Democrat. And that meant I figured out from day one I had to get along and I had to work across the aisle to get anything done.” [Romney, Denver Presidential Debate, 10/3/12] 

Associated Press: “Some Democratic Lawmakers Accused Romney Of Being Aloof, Unapproachable And Not Much Interested In Working With Them” And His “Legislative Agenda On Big Issues Like Transportation And Higher Education Fizzled As A Result.” “Some Democratic lawmakers accused Romney of being aloof, unapproachable and not much interested in working with them to build the kind of friendships and alliances that are needed to help pass legislation. They say Romney’s legislative agenda on big issues like transportation and higher education fizzled as a result.” [Associated Press, 8/2/12]

As Governor, Romney Had A Style Marked By “Disinterest In Bipartisan Collaboration.” “Romney’s ability to wield the bully pulpit circumventing inflexible lawmakers and appealing directly to the public was a hallmark of his tenure, and it hints at the CEO style of leadership that he might bring to the White House. The flip side of that style is Romney’s relative disinterest in bipartisan collaboration, a practice that’s already rare in Washington.” [National Journal, 11/10/11]

As Governor, Romney “Furnished The Massachusetts Press Corps, Always Looking For Conflict, With A Running Narrative Of Combat” Against Democratic Legislators – A Departure From His GOP Predecessors. “Instead of trying to cut deals with legislators, Romney positioned himself as the anti-Beacon-Hill governor, capitalizing on public mistrust of what his campaign team had framed as the Democratic ‘gang.’ He furnished the Massachusetts press corps, always looking for conflict, with a running narrative of combat. That was a departure from the collegiality of Romney’s GOP predecessors. With Bill Weld, Paul Cellucci, and then Swift, Democratic legislators were accustomed to chief executives who either rose along similar career paths, as did Cellucci and Swift, or showed Brahmin bemusement at their roguish ways, as did Weld.” [National Journal, 11/10/11]

MetroWest Daily News Editorial: Romney Failed To Establish Strong Working Relationship With Legislative Leaders And Seemed More Interested In “Picking The Right Fights Than In Building Coalitions To Solve Problems.”  “Gov. Mitt Romney makes his official exit today, taking the traditional ‘lone walk’ down the State House steps a day early so as not to run into Deval Patrick’s inauguration ceremony. That act is symbolic in two ways: He leaves as a loner with his own personal agenda, who never became a full member of Massachusetts’ governing class, and he’s leaving before his term is officially finished, though months after he turned his attention away from the Bay State in pursuit of national office…Some had potential, but Romney failed to do the political work required to bring them to fruition. Romney never established a solid working relationship with legislative leaders.  And while he is a good speaker and effective on the stump, he leaves the Massachusetts Republican Party weaker than ever…Too often, though, Romney has appeared more interested in picking the right fights than in building coalitions to solve problems.”  [Editorial, MetroWest Daily News, 1/3/07]

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