Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Obama, Boehner both fudged facts in speeches; FactCheck calls them out and explains reality

The crisis over raising the national debt ceiling has become so dire that it should be of interest even to locally focused news media, which should help readers, listeners and viewers sort out the facts. Last night's dueling speeches by President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner often strayed from the facts or lacked proper context, reports FactCheck, a non-partisan, non-profit service of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania.

"Obama described raising the debt ceiling as historically 'routine'," FactCheck says, "but this request is the largest in history, even in inflation-adjusted dollars. The president also accused Republicans of favoring tax breaks for oil companies and private jet owners at the expense of Medicare beneficiaries. But those populist tax hikes would not reduce the deficit by even 1 percent."

On the other hand, "Boehner claimed Obama is adamantly against 'fundamental changes' to entitlement programs. In fact, the president has proposed $650 billion in cuts to the future growth of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Similarly, Boehner said Obama 'wants a blank check today' just as the president did six months ago [when he asked Congress to raise the ceiling] but the president has now offered spending cuts of between $1.5 trillion and $1.7 trillion over 10 years, including the entitlement cuts."

For the full report, click here. More to the substance of the debate, FactCheck recently posted an article answering the question "Does Washington have a spending problem or an income problem?" To read it, click here.


Anonymous said...

Fact Check needs to check it's facts. Obama has repeatedly asked for "no conditions". He really has not offered, publicly a list of cuts taht are cuts that anyone outside Washington DC would recognize.

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Old Scout said...

1. It is not within the President's brief to offer a plan here. The President is required to submit a budget, but not an act of the Congress. Many times Congress will accept legislation written by outside parties - especially the republican'ts who turn to lobbyists for their legislative agenda. Constitutionally he's limited to veto or enact the legislative product of the Congress. I believe he's negotiating as a benefit to the Majority in the House, using the 'no secrets, no surprises approach to management and governance'.
2. Cite time and date; place and circumstance where the President has said no conditions. I will grant that he's said "No!" to specific requirements or conditions. If that's all you've got, you need to have played 'spin the top' when younger.