Last night in Danville, KY Vice President Joe Biden and Republican Paul Ryan gave voters the kind of substantive showdown that was everything the presidential debate was not. Abandoning his boss’ caution, Biden called out his opponent for what he was.
Not a single thing he said is accurate,’’ Biden shot back when Ryan leveled a charge that President Barack Obama was projecting U.S. weakness.
And that was not the only lie Ryan told last night.
*Ryan said Obama’s proposal to let tax rates rise for high-income individuals would “tax about 53 percent of small-business income.” Wrong. Ryan is counting giant hedge funds and thousands of other multimillion-dollar enterprises as “small” businesses.
*Ryan was wrong when he said a rise in the jobless rate in Biden’s hometown was “how it’s going all around America.” The rate nationally has sunk back to where it was when Obama took office. And in Ryan’s hometown, it’s more than 4 percentage points lower that it was at the start of Obama’s term.
*Ryan claimed the Obama administration spent stimulus money on “electric cars in Finland.” Not true. Although the cars have been assembled in Finland, the money went for work in the United States.
*Ryan twisted the words of a Medicare official as saying “one out of six hospitals and nursing homes are going to go out of business” as a result of the Affordable Care Act. Not quite. The official said that many could become “unprofitable,” and the the situation could be monitored to head off bad outcomes.
*Ryan claimed that the ACA contains “taxpayer funding” of abortion. In fact the law provides no direct funding of abortion except in cases of rape or incest or to save the mother’s life. And it’s a matter of interpretation whether subsidized private insurance would amount to indirect federal support for abortion.
*Ryan was off base when he said of a cost-saving panel created by the Affordable Care Act, “not one of them even has to have medical training.” Actually, the board must include physicians and other health care professionals among its members.
*Ryan at one point ground out a collection of shopworn misstatements about the health care law that have been disproven time and again, claiming “20 million people … are projected to lose their health insurance” (not true), that premiums have gone up $3,000 (no, they haven’t) and that 7.4 million seniors “are going to lose” Medicare Advantage plans (maybe, but they’d still be covered by traditional Medicare).
Last nights debate which was sharply run by ABC News moderator Martha Raddatz, with the exception of the last question about “their personal and religious thought of abortion” gave the American people what they wanted and needed to see.
And it also gave Joe Biden the much-needed chance to expose the Romney/Ryan “malarkey” (ie lies, garbage and bullshit) machine.
REMEMBER: Facts Matter