WaPo fact check: Democrat tax hike claim a tad bit misleading

On Tuesday Nevada Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto made some odd claims in a press release about how the GOP tax reform bill would rip off middle-class taxpayers. We poked fun at a few items, but it turns out one was a whopper.

The Washington Post today looked into a claim made by three Democrats a week ago, the same one made by Cortez Masto this week. She claimed, “The average tax increase on families nationwide earning up to $86,100 would be $794.”

In tweets, Democratic Sens. Kamala Harris of California, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Jeff Merkley of Oregon made the same bogus claim.


It turns out that claim was lifted from a Democratic Policy and Communications Committee analysis. According to the Post the document had this line on each state page: “The average tax increase on families nationwide earning up to $86,100 would be $794, a significant burden for middle-class families.”

This was attributed to a report by Democrats on the Joint Economic Committee. That report stated, “If enacted, the Republican tax reform proposal would saddle 8 million households that earn up to $86,100 with an average tax increase of $794 — a substantial expense for working families.”

But you see, there are 122 million households making less than $86,100. Thus only 6.5 percent of those households would see a tax hike of that amount. The Post reported that more than 97 million, or 80 percent, of that group would get a tax cut averaging about $450.

(Tax Policy Center)

The Post piece concludes, “In their haste to condemn the GOP tax plan, Democrats have spread far and wide the false claim that families making less than $86,100 on average will face a hefty tax hike. Actually, it’s the opposite. Most families in that income range would get a tax cut. Any Democrat who spread this claim should delete their tweets and make clear they were in error.”


8 comments on “WaPo fact check: Democrat tax hike claim a tad bit misleading

  1. Steve says:

    Washington Post being objective, I bet that hurt them to write it!

  2. Steve says:

    And she hasn’t even acknowledged it yet.

  3. deleted says:

    Lies, lies, lies, lies, lies, lies, lies. That the current electoral college “winner” and his party have told, repeatedly, about the tax plan they intend to inflict on Americans.

    And although they understand that they are lying, I haven’t heard any calls for any apologies.


  4. Rincon says:

    So who’s telling the lies, Krugman or Republicans? Conservatives will say Krugman and Liberals will say the Republicans. Someone’s lying, but there’s no agreement about who it is. Running a representative republic with no way of knowing truth is like driving a car without a steering wheel. In this lies the seeds of the destruction of our great country.

  5. deleted says:

    Lies are not opinions. The very definition of a lie is an intentional misstatement of a fact, usually a material fact. In other words the person knows that are misstating a fact, and they know that the fact is an important one to whatever statement they are making.

    All lies are not equal, and there can be no “disagreement” because again, lies are an intentional misstatement of facts, not of opinions. So, if Krugman stated a fact, whether the republicans disagree with what he said or not is not really relevant in any rational world.

    Similarly (although I’ve not run a cross this personally) if the republicans stated a fact about their tax plan, whatever Krugman agreed or disagreed with means nothing from a rational perspective.

    The difference here, in my opinion, is that the right is more than happy to see people throw their hands up and say “everything is an opinion” and therefore because I’ve got mine, no one else’s can be superior and damn if I will let anyone tell me otherwise.

    Plus of course, the far right WANTS people to give up on government; makes their goal that much closer to reality.

  6. Athos says:

    But why would the Democrats put out such misleading statements? Clerical error? Some sort of agenda?
    And what could possibly be their agenda for putting out misleading statements?

  7. Rincon says:

    The best propaganda has just enough truth to sound plausible. The average person can’t tell it from fact in many cases.

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