Madison
67° F
Overcast
Overcast
Advertisement

Reality Check: McCain Ad Attacks Obama On Tax Issues

Published On: Sep 25 2008 05:20:47 AM CDT   Updated On: Sep 25 2008 06:02:01 AM CDT
MADISON, Wis. -

The fallout on Wall Street has taken the economy front and center in the presidential campaign.

A new ad by Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain goes after Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama on tax concerns.

"Obama and his liberal congressional allies want a massive government -- billions in spending increases, wasteful pork," said the ad.

A WISC-TV analysis found that this needs clarification.

Obama does want to make some significant spending increases, including an estimated $65 billion on health care and $150 billion over 10 years on green energy initiatives.

It's true that Obama has requested earmarks of $330 million last year alone. Obama said he'd request no earmarks for 2009 and he'd return earmarking to 2001 levels.

"We would pay painful income taxes, skyrocketing taxes on life savings, electricity and home heating oil," said the ad.

This is misleading. First of all, income taxes under Obama's plan would go up only for families who make more than $250,000 and for individuals who make more than $200,000.

And taxes on "life savings," meaning capital gains or dividend taxes, would also goup only for those upper tax brackets. For 80 percent of the country's taxpayers, Obama would actually cut taxes, a WISC-TV analysis found.

"That is something I believe that is absolutely necessary to strengthen an economy that is going to be sliding, probably, into deeper recession," said Obama.

Obama has never said he'd raise taxes on electricity. He said in one interview he'd prefer to tax "dirty energy" to fund education, but neither was his plan.

Obama supports a cap-and-trade system for greenhouse gas emissions, which some have called a tax on electricity. The thing is, McCain supports a similar plan, WISC-TV found.

On heating oil, Obama would send out rebate checks to help pay for energy costs.

But he'd tax the profits of oil companies to pay for the rebate, and some believe that tax on big oil would be passed on to consumers driving up prices.

The non-partisan Tax Policy Center has looked at the tax and spending plans of both candidates, and said unless major spending cuts or tax increases were made by either candidate, both of their plans will substantially increase the national debt and fail to significantly stimulate the economy.

Advertisement
  • Safest Cities - Honolulu

    Marco Garcia/Getty Images

    4. Honolulu, Hawaii

    US cities where residents feel safest

    Gallup-Healthways has ranked the U.S. cities that feel the safest to residents.  How a city ranked on the list was based on how it measured in perceived safety, financial security and sense of community. Click through for the top 20.

  • Takata

    CNN

    12 biggest auto recalls

    Over 2 million more vehicles were added to official lists of models being recalled because of potentially dangerous airbags made by Japanese manufacturer Takata. The recall now totals about 36 million vehicles worldwide. Take a look at the biggest auto recalls in history.

  • Fidel sign Cuba

    Getty Images

    Looking back: U.S.-Cuba relations

    The United States officially removed Cuba from its list of countries that sponsor terrorism on Friday . Get up to speed on the last five decades of American foreign policy toward Cuba.

Advertisement