During last night’s vice presidential debate, Congressman Paul Ryan lied 24 times. From terrorism to Medicare to Social Security to Israel to Obamacare to unemployment to taxes to military funding to Iran, no topic seemed off base for the now-standard Romney/Ryan standard operating procedure: lies.
Regular readers will remember that in August, Paul Ryan‘s speech at the Republican National Convention was filled with “blatant lies and misrepresentations” according to an op-ed in Fox News, the all-but-official news agency of the GOP.
Igor Volsky at Think Progress, (which has done an excellent job this year, by the way,) notes that “Paul Ryan spoke for 40 of the 90 minutes during Thursday night’s vice presidential debate and managed to tell at least 24 myths during that time.”
Here are our top six “favorite” lies. And by “favorite” we mean, most atrocious or ugly or stupid or…
1) “It took the president two weeks to acknowledge that [the Libya attack] was a terrorist attack.” Obama used the word “terrorism” to describe the killing of Americans the very next day at the Rose Garden. “No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for,” Obama said in a Rose Garden statement on September 12.
12) “Eight out of 10 businesses, they file their taxes as individuals, not as corporations.” Far less than half of the people affected by the expiration of the upper income tax cuts get any of their income at all from a small businesses. And those people could very well be receiving speaking fees or book royalties, which qualify as “small business income” but don’t have a direct impact on job creation. It’s actually hard to find a small business who think that they will be hurt if the marginal tax rate on income earned above $250,000 per year is increased.
13) “[Unemployment is rising] all around America.” In August, the unemployment rate dropped from a year before in 325 of 372 metro areas surveyed by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
16) “You can – you can cut tax rates by 20 percent and still preserve these important preferences for middle-class taxpayer. It is mathematically possible. It’s been done before. It’s precisely what we’re proposing.” If Romney/Ryan hope to provide tax relief to the middle class, then their $5 trillion tax cut would add to the deficit. There are not enough deductions in the tax code that primarily benefit rich people to make his math work. As the Tax Policy Center concluded, Romney’s plan can’t both exempt middle class families from tax cuts and remain revenue neutral. “He’s promised all these things and he can’t do them all. In order for him to cover the cost of his tax cut without adding to the deficit, he’d have to find a way to raise taxes on middle income people or people making less than $200,000 a year,” the Center found.
18) “If these cuts go through, our Navy will be the smallest – the smallest it has been since before World War I.” PolitiFact rated this claim as “Pants on Fire,” noting that “a wide range of experts told us it’s wrong to assume that a decline in the number of ships or aircraft automatically means a weaker military.”
19) “Look at what they’re doing through Obamacare with respect to assaulting the religious liberties of this country. They’re infringing upon our first freedom, the freedom of religion, by infringing on Catholic charities, Catholic churches, Catholic hospitals.” Religious institutions haven’t been forced to “violate their conscience” by paying for contraception. Houses of worship and other religious nonprofits that primarily employ and serve people of the same faith will be exempt from offering birth control.
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