Crossroads GPS: “Hiding Taxes”/”Pay Raises”

A reissued ad from Crossroads GPS abandons the plainly false claim that former Heidi Heitkamp “spent taxpayer dollars on private planes” as North Dakota’s Attorney General, replacing it with the equally disingenuous phrase “allowed staff to fly a taxpayer-funded plane.” But the very article cited in the ad explains that the planes were used for drug enforcement – not the stylish travel GPS implies even after admitting the initial lie about Heitkamp spending money on the aircraft. In addition, the ad misleads on pay raises given underpaid attorneys in Heitkamp’s office, positions she took on car insurance and coal taxes in the ’90s, and her 2012 position on taxes.

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Crossroads GPS: “Sense”

Crossroads GPS uses Montana Sen. Jon Tester’s vote in favor of the Middle Class Tax Cut Act to accuse him of supporting tax hikes on Montana families and small businesses. In reality, Tester’s vote supported an extension of the Bush tax cuts for all income up to $200,000. Those earning more than that – approximately the top 1.4 percent of households – are, contrary to Crossroads’ suggestion, very rarely actual small businesses. Crossroads’ other evidence for Tester’s supposed habit of hiking taxes is the health care law, which won’t increase taxes for the majority of Americans.

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Crossroads GPS: “People Over Government”

Crossroads GPS is attacking Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) over taxes, attempting to cast her support for ending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans as a determination to increase taxes on small businesses. But what McCaskill has actually “voted repeatedly” to do is to cut everyone’s taxes on their first $200,000 of income, and to revert to Clinton-era rates on the 1.4 percent of Americans who earn enough to benefit from the top-end Bush tax cuts. In addition to the standard conservative conflation of rich people and small businesses, the GPS ad misleads about the tax impact of health care reform, and implies that it’s McCaskill, and not a massive global economic crisis, that’s hurt Missouri’s manufacturers.

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Private-Sector Recovery Diminished By Shrinking Government Payrolls

It’s unremarkable for President Obama’s opponents to deride his career in public service; ever since Ronald Reagan ran into term limits, conservatives have insisted that business experience is more important in the White House than intellect, vision, and policy knowledge. But conservative reverence for the business world and disdain for government work is so dogmatic today that Republicans often claim that Obama’s policies have primarily, or even only, benefitted the public sector at the expense of the private economy. This is nonsense. The primary difference between the Obama recovery and the previous three post-recession economies, other than the depth of the crater Wall Street’s actions created, is that where government payrolls expanded under Presidents Bush, Clinton, and Reagan, the public sector has shed well over half a million jobs since the end of the recession. Meanwhile, private-sector hiring has been far more consistent than conservatives would have you believe.

3.3 Million New Private-Sector Jobs Since Recession, But 640,000 Government Employees Out Of Work

Recession Officially Ran From December 2007 To June 2009, Making It The Longest Since World War II. From the National Bureau of Economic Research: “The Business Cycle Dating Committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research met yesterday by conference call. At its meeting, the committee determined that a trough in business activity occurred in the U.S. economy in June 2009. The trough marks the end of the recession that began in December 2007 and the beginning of an expansion. The recession lasted 18 months, which makes it the longest of any recession since World War II. Previously the longest postwar recessions were those of 1973-75 and 1981-82, both of which lasted 16 months. In determining that a trough occurred in June 2009, the committee did not conclude that economic conditions since that month have been favorable or that the economy has returned to operating at normal capacity. Rather, the committee determined only that the recession ended and a recovery began in that month.” [NBER.org, 9/20/10]

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Americans For Prosperity: “Bill Nelson: Stop Wasteful Spending”

Americans for Prosperity warps Sen. Bill Nelson’s (D-FL) voting record, misrepresenting the impact of legislation he supported (health care reform and the Recovery Act) and offering dishonest descriptions of legislation he opposed. The ad claims Nelson voted “against stopping more taxpayer-funded bailouts,” citing a vote to allow the auto rescue to proceed – a successful move that has saved jobs in the auto industry and throughout the economy. AFP also accuses Nelson of voting “against American-made energy” on the basis of his opposition to faster offshore drilling permits one year after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill hurt tourism on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

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