News item in the barely readable Newsweek chortling with glee over FactCheck's latest salvo against the Obama campaign, to wit:
"In a TV ad and in speeches, Obama is making bogus claims that McCain plans to cut $880 billion from Medicare spending and to reduce benefits.Except for the fact that senior policy people for the campaign have been saying just that for a couple of weeks now, as reported in the Wall Street Journal:
A TV spot says McCain's plan requires "cuts in benefits, eligibility or both."
Obama said in a speech that McCain plans "cuts" that would force seniors to "pay more for your drugs, receive fewer services, and get lower quality care."
These claims are false, and based on a single newspaper report that says no such thing. McCain's policy director states unequivocally that no benefit cuts are envisioned."
"John McCain would pay for his health plan with major reductions to Medicare and Medicaid, a top aide said, in a move that independent analysts estimate could result in cuts of $1.3 trillion over 10 years to the government programs.If on were to believe this, it appears as if Obama might actually understating the damage that McCain is planning to unleash on American seniors' health care.
In the months since Sen. McCain introduced his health plan, statements made by his campaign have implied that the new tax credits he is proposing to help Americans buy health insurance would be paid for with other tax increases.
But Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Sen. McCain's senior policy adviser, said Sunday that the campaign has always planned to fund the tax credits, in part, with savings from Medicare and Medicaid. Those government health-care programs serve seniors, poor families and the disabled. Medicare spending for the fiscal year ended Sept. 30 is estimated at $457.5 billion.
And you have to read the FactCheck article carefully to find the dishonest there. The only proof they offer of the deceit of the Obama ad is that it ultimately comes from a paper written by progressives at the Center for American Progress, without ever delving into what the paper said.
FactCheck then, quite treacherously, carries water for McCain by claiming that the $1.3 trillion would not be in cuts, but merely "what would need to be produced to make the plan revenue neutral."
In fact, had the FactCheck folks bothered to actually review the CAP report and their research, they would have found a very cogent argument based not on just a single WSJ report, but on state by state health care statistics, the McCain campaign's own statements over the summer and basic math.
The FactCheck answer? There won't be cuts, they'll find 1.3 trillion dollars in waste and fraud.
But even though this was ostensibly all about the Obama ad and the so-called reality of the McCaim plan, that still didn't stop FactCheck's Brooks Jackson from taking partisan parting shots at Obama's health plan, claiming -- without offers of proof or explanation -- that they were all very skeptical of Obama's ability to provide his plan as promised.