MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Vice Presidential nominees demonstrated style and substance in their feisty, first and only debate. But also, a lot of spin.

Congressman Paul Ryan claimed that Governor Romney can tax rates by 20 percent and keep the middle class tax benefits like the mortgage deduction.

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Here’s how the exchange went:

RYAN: You can — you can cut tax rates by 20 percent and still preserve these important preferences for middle-class taxpayers…
BIDEN: Not mathematically possible.
RYAN: It is mathematically possible. It’s been done before. It’s precisely what we’re proposing.
BIDEN: It has never been done before.
RYAN: It’s been done a couple of times, actually.
BIDEN: It has never been done before.
RYAN: Jack Kennedy lowered tax rates, increased growth. Ronald Reagan…
BIDEN: Oh, now you’re Jack Kennedy?

Biden is right, and Ryan is wrong.

Romney’s 20 percent tax rate reduction costs $5 trillion over 10 years.

Romney would have to eliminate most tax loopholes to pay for it.

But Biden stretches the truth on tax hikes.

“The middle class will pay less, and people making a million dollars or more will begin to contribute slightly more,” said Biden, describing the President’s plan to roll back the Bush tax cuts.

Biden is technically accurate, but he leaves out important information, so his answer is deceptive.

Millionaires get a tax hike, but so do many others – all the way down to couples making $250,000, and single taxpayers at $200,000.

The vice president also played fast and loose with Ryan’s Medicare plan. Here’s what he said:

“It’s a voucher. When they first proposed — when the congressman had his first voucher program, the CBO said it would cost $6,400 a year, Martha, more for every senior, 55 and below, when they got there. He knew that, yet he got all the guys in Congress and women in the Republican Party to vote for it. Governor Romney, knowing that, said, I would sign it, were I there,” said Biden. “Who do you trust on this? A man who introduced a bill that would raise it $6400 a year?”


Ryan did introduce a Medicare voucher bill in 2011 that could cost seniors that much.

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But he discarded the plan long ago, and introduced a new one to ease that burden.

It has not been evaluated by the Congressional Budget Office.

And Ryan repeated one of the most common deceptions of 2012 about the President’s health care plan.

“We face a very big choice,” said Ryan. “What kind of country are we going to be? What kind of country are we going to give our kids? President Obama, he had his chance. He made his choices. His economic agenda: more spending, more borrowing, higher taxes, a government takeover of health care,” Ryan said.

No matter how many times Congressman Ryan and Governor Romney say the new health care law is a government takeover, it is wrong.

The new federal health care law is not a government takeover. It is a free market expansion of health care.

Here are some of the sources used for this Reality Check: 







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