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December 13, 2010 10:06 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - December 12, 2010

Rep. Paul Ryan was the sole Republican elected official to appear on this week's Sunday political programs. In discussing the estate tax, Ryan suggested that Democrats want a massive tax levied against people who have the nerve to die wealthy. In fact, the Democratic proposal — a 45 percent rate and an exemption for estates up to $3.5 million for an individual or $7 million for a couple — amounts to a 20-percentage-point cut from what Republicans wrote into law for 2011. Ryan went on to celebrate the current zero percent estate tax without acknowledging that the Bush tax cuts used a one-year repeal gimmick to make repealing the tax package more difficult politically.

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November 08, 2010 11:19 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - November 7, 2010

The Sunday shows were crowded with naked falsehoods yesterday. Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) claimed on Fox News that President Obama "has killed jobs" despite the fact that a resurgent private sector has added 1.1 million jobs so far this year. On CBS, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) claimed that 750,000 small businesses pay income taxes in the top two brackets, but that number only works if you include massive corporations like Bechtel and PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which play accounting games to avoid corporate tax rates, in your definition of "small businesses." Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) absurdly claimed on NBC that Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) entitlement-slashing debt reduction plan requires more sacrifice from bureaucrats than from average Americans. Worst of all, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) claimed on ABC that tax cuts for the wealthy are good for the economy and don't increase the deficit. In the real world, of course, Pence is wrong on both counts.

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September 13, 2010 2:19 pm ET

"Young Gun" Rep. Paul Ryan Lies About His "Roadmap For America's Future"

In their new book Young Guns, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) repeatedly mislead readers on Republican policy proposals.  In his section of the book, Rep. Paul Ryan paints a deceptively rosy picture of his "Roadmap for America's Future." In reality, the plan will dismantle Social Security and Medicare, restrict access to health insurance, slash taxes for the wealthiest Americans, and raise taxes on working middle class families.

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September 13, 2010 2:19 pm ET

"Young Guns" Miss The Target With Recovery Act Falsehoods

In their new book Young Guns, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) repeat the same old dishonest talking points about the Recovery Act.  Cantor argues that the GOP's "alternative stimulus" would have created "twice the jobs at half the cost," while Ryan and McCarthy suggest that President Obama's bill "failed." In reality, the "twice the jobs" claim was based on a mathematical formula that Republicans admitted they didn't understand and the deficit would have remained nearly the same under the Republican proposal.  Meanwhile, the Recovery Act has created millions of jobs, boosted GDP, and put American on the path to recovery.

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September 13, 2010 2:18 pm ET

"Young Guns" Stick To "Government Takeover" Talking Points And "Rising Premiums" Deceptions

In their new book Young Guns, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) attack the Affordable Care Act using predictable and dishonest buzzwords. They repeatedly call it a "government takeover" or "government healthcare" that will inflate insurance costs. Rep. Ryan implicitly acknowledges that as written, the law will reduce the deficit — but he claims that won't happen because future lawmakers will lack the political will to enact its provisions. Despite their rhetoric, the fact remains that the Affordable Care Act will insure 10% of the country with just a 1% increase in health care spending (meaning the cost per unit of insurance will go down); premiums will hold steady or fall for most Americans; and we'll see a substantial increase in the amount of coverage people can purchase, all without a government takeover of health care.

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September 13, 2010 2:18 pm ET

"Young Guns" Go Nuclear With Bogus Process Complaints

In addition to the predictable Republican distortions of health care policy, Young Guns reprises a series of disingenuous complaints about the process by which the Affordable Care Act became law.  Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) condemns Senate Democrats for allegedly using reconciliation — which he falsely calls the "nuclear option" — to pass health care reform.  In reality, though, the bill passed with 60 votes under normal rules, and reconciliation was only used pass budgetary fixes that even Republicans claimed to support.  Furthermore, Republicans regularly employed reconciliation when they were in power, including for the deficit-busting Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003.

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September 13, 2010 2:17 pm ET

"Young Guns" Lie About Energy

In their new book Young Guns, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) repeat the same old dishonest talking points about clean energy legislation and the party's American Energy Act.  Contrary to the trio's false claims, investing in clean energy would boost America's economy by $111 billion and create up to 1.9 million jobs.  And at a time when Americans are seeking new solutions to rebuild our economy and break our dependence on foreign energy sources, House Republicans have proposed the failed policies pursued by President Bush.

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September 13, 2010 2:17 pm ET

"Young Gun" Rep. Paul Ryan's Earmark Hypocrisy

In an attempt to bolster his fiscal conservative bona fides in Young Guns, Rep. Paul Ryan criticizes a previous class of Republicans for "succumb[ing] to the earmark culture" in order to get reelected. However, Rep. Ryan is in no position to throw stones at others. The last time he was up for reelection, he obtained over $5 million in earmarks for his home state, including nearly $1.4 million for the "Ice Age National Scenic Trail."

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March 31, 2010 11:53 am ET

FactCheck.org Smacks Down The GOP's "16,500 New IRS Agents" Lie

In the final weeks of the health care debate, Republicans repeated the baseless claim that the Affordable Care Act required "16,500 additional IRS agents." The experts at FactCheck.org examined the claim yesterday and deemed it "wildly inaccurate."

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March 22, 2010 10:58 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - March 21, 2010

On yesterday's political talk shows, Reps. John Boehner and Paul Ryan, Sen. John Cornyn, and RNC Chairman Michael Steele repeated worn out obstructionist talking points. Despite the GOP's slanderous attempts to derail health care reform, the bill will stop insurance company abuses, cut the deficit, create jobs, and provide millions of Americans with affordable health care coverage.

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March 15, 2010 4:04 pm ET

During Health Care Markup, Rep. Ryan Lies About Medical Treatment Research

During the House Budget Committee's markup of the health care reform "fix" on March 15, 2010, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) falsely claimed comparative effectiveness research (CER) would "restrict" doctors' decisions about which treatment they could offer their patients.  In reality, the CER board would simply conduct research to evaluate the effectiveness of various medical treatments, NOT recommend or "restrict" treatments.

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March 15, 2010 1:38 pm ET

Rep. Ryan Fills Health Care Op-Ed With Distortions

On March 15, 2010, Rep. Paul Ryan published a wildly misleading op-ed in the Washington Post.  In it, he uses false attacks to smear the Democratic plan to reform health care and lies about the would-be effects of two of his own proposals, the Patients' Choice Act and Roadmap for America's Future.

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March 01, 2010 9:18 am ET

Fact Checking the Sunday Shows - February 28, 2010

On yesterday's political talk shows, Republican Senators Jon Kyl (AZ), John McCain (AZ), and Lamar Alexander (TN) along with Representatives Paul Ryan (WI), Marsha Blackburn (TN), and Eric Cantor (VA) repeated countless false talking points about Democratic health care reform proposals.

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February 25, 2010 10:38 am ET

Health Care Reform Summit: The GOP "Away Team"

The GOP Summit "Away Team" will have a rocky landing at President Obama's bipartisan summit on health care reform.  These 18 members of Congress have made no secret of their staunch opposition to health care reform - no matter how much their constituents support it or how it would benefit their districts.

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February 12, 2010 11:36 am ET

Rep. Ryan's "Roadmap" Mixes & Matches The Worst Policies Of Bush And McCain

On January 27, 2010, Republican Rep. Paul Ryan, the ranking member on the House Budget Committee, released a "Roadmap for America's Future" budget proposal.  Despite Ryan's efforts to frame the plan as fresh and new, a quick glance shows his ideas are simply mixed and matched from the worst policies of President George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain.

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February 01, 2010 10:07 am ET

Fact Checking the Sunday Shows - January 31, 2010

On Sunday, January 31, 2010, it was abundantly clear what the Republicans' talking points were.  On Sunday show after Sunday show, the Republican guests repeated falsehoods about Democrats' actions to tackle the recession.  Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Sen. John Thune (R-SD), were the worst offenders, repeatedly spreading falsehoods about the economy, jobs, the deficit, and health care.

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November 12, 2009 12:19 pm ET

Rep. Paul Ryan Falsely Claims Clean Energy Legislation Would Cost Over $3,000 Per Family

During a November 9, 2009 speech to the Economic Club of Minnesota, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) falsely claimed cap-and-trade legislation in front of Congress would increase costs by over $3,000 per family. Contrary to Ryan's statement, legislation increasing our investment in clean energy technologies would create jobs in every state and help America become more energy independent, all for less than a quarter a day.

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September 04, 2009 2:32 pm ET

Rep. Ryan Criticizes A "Go-It-Alone" Approach Months After Saying It's Dems' "Right"

On September 4, 2009, Rep. Paul Ryan criticized Democrats for what he referred to as a "go-it-alone" approach to health insurance reform.  Yet just a few months ago, Rep. Ryan insisted: "It is their right. It is what they can do. They hold the power, and they're probably going to exercise it.  We don't like it because we don't like what looks like the outcome."

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July 20, 2009 12:05 pm ET

Rep. Ryan Spreads Falsehoods About The Public Option

In an Milwauke Journal Sentinel op-ed on July 18, 2009, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) spread numerous falsehoods about a public health insurance option.  In reality, a public option will keep private insurers honest by allowing a public plan to set a benchmark for service and care.

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June 12, 2009 2:35 pm ET

Rep. Ryan's Op-Ed FAIL

On June 11, 2009, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) authored an op-ed titled "The False Choice versus The Patients' Choice" in which he makes several faulty assertions.

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April 28, 2009 12:40 pm ET

Rep. Paul Ryan Needs A Vocabulary Lesson

On April 28, 2009, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe to discuss President Obama's budget. Predictably, Ryan attacked the idea of using reconciliation to pass health care reform and repeated unsubstantiated Republican talking points about taxation. However, he also revealed that he's in desperate need of a vocabulary lesson.

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April 27, 2009 6:23 pm ET

Rep. Paul Ryan Finally Read His GOP Talking Points

In less than a week, Rep. Paul Ryan made a complete U-Turn on using the budget reconciliation process to pass health care reform.  On April 23, 2009, Ryan repeatedly insisted Democrats had the right to use the reconciliation process.  Yet, on April 27, 2009, Ryan compared reconciliation to "forcing Republicans to negotiate on health care with a gun to their heads."  It looks like Rep. Ryan finally read his GOP talking points.

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April 27, 2009 3:20 pm ET

Rep. Paul Ryan Needs $10.5 Million To Pay His Pork Bill

On April 27, 2009, the GOP Leader Blog posted a piece on President Obama's budget.  The post promotes the budget proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan that allegedly asks for all non-defense spending be frozen.  That's all well and good until you examine Rep. Ryan's history of non-defense earmark requests.

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