“We said working folks deserved a break, so within one month of me taking office, we signed into law the biggest middle-class tax cut in history, putting more money into your pockets.” -- Barack Obama, 9/5/11
Wow. Really? The "biggest middle-class tax cut in history"? That would be quite an accomplishment, Barack Obama... if only it were the truth.
WaPo's Glenn Kessler lays the inconvenient facts:
We took an informal survey in our office and asked people what they thought the president’s statement meant. Everyone agreed he was claiming the biggest tax cut in terms of dollars.
Imagine our surprise when the White House responded that he wasn’t talking about dollars at all.
“The point the president was making that is there is not a tax cut that has been enjoyed by such a broad section of the population,” an administration official said, pointing to a report that said that 95 percent of working families received some kind of tax cut under the Making Work Pay provision in his stimulus bill.
In other words, this isn’t about the size of the tax cut, but about the fact that every working family, except those making more than $190,000, received as much as $800 in tax cuts.
So, as Ed Morrissey rightly points out, Obama's predecessor could theoretically pass a $1 tax cut for every American and claim the mantle for Obama's dubious "record" of 95 percent.
And if this fact weren't a big enough slap in the face from the Obama White House, it only gets worse:
Incidentally, the report that the administration official cited as “outside validation” for the 95 percent statistic just mentioned it as an aside. We checked with one of the co-authors, and he said the source for the figure was a White House fact sheet.