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June 27, 2008


This will come as a shock to you, but Krugman and Media Matters are lying about what McCain said. Here's the quote from McCain's speech about which they complain: "Senator Obama's plans would add to the difficulties of small business in other ways, too. Currently, there are the 21.6 million sole proprietorships filing under the individual income tax. When Senator Obama talks about raising income tax rates on those making over 250,000 dollars -- that includes these businesses as well."

McCain doesn't say that all of the sole proprietorships in the country are making more than $250,000. He's pointing out that those that are making more than that amount would see their income taxes increased under Obama's plan.

It's a pity there isn't an independent blogger-type fellow, perhaps a political science graduate student somewhere, who could fact-check misleading comments by the likes of Krugman and the highly partisan Media Matters.

BTW, note how Brendan's headline refers to "Bush/McCain." It's nice to know he's so effortlessly adopted the strategy of the Obama campaign of eliding Bush and McCain. Way to show your independence there, Brendan!

Rob, that's utterly unconvincing. McCain's quote obliterates the some/all distinction in exactly the way that Bush does on this issue (hence the headline). Rather than clarifying that the increase would not apply to the whole group, he says "that includes these businesses as well" -- a phrase that suggests that all 21.6 million small businesses face an increase. If he instead said "that includes *a small fraction* of these businesses as well," I would have no objection.

McCain was talking to a group of small businessmen and businesswomen. Naturally he linked policy discussion to his audience.

I think we agree that McCain meant "When Senator Obama talks about raising income tax rates on those making over 250,000 dollars -- that includes SOME OF these businesses as well." Did his audience understand the comment as intended? Of course they did. Anyone in the audience who wasn't earning over $250,000 knew that this tax increase wouldn't apply to him or her.

Good, so now we can start counting all the times Brendan calls out Obama when he gives examples of those adversely affected by Republican policies if Obama fails to note that those consequences affect only "a small fraction" of the people.

I'm guessing the count is going to hover around zero.

I wish Brendan had included McCain's actual quote and a link to the speech. Then readers could have judged for ourselves whether the paraphrase is fair. Also, the quote and links would have confirmed that Brendan had independently verified the accusation, rather than just take Krugman's and Media Matters' word for it.

How do you cite the Media Matters for America website in a anti McCain ad, when the website promotes itself as "a web-based, not-for-profit, progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media."
Correcting conservative misinformation? That sounds like a non-biased reference to me.

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