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Truth Test: Claims in Romney ad debatable

6:04 PM, Oct 10, 2012   |    comments
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In this Truth Test, we look at so-called studies and non-partisan claims from a Romney ad.

CLAIM:
Announcer: According to an independent, non-partisan study, Barack Obama and the liberals will raise taxes on the middle class by $4,000

FINDINGS:
There are two claims here to test. First, the idea you're listening to claims from an independent non-partisan study is debatable.

The American Enterprise Institute claims it is non-partisan and doesn't affiliate with campaigns. It has to, by law, to remain a non-profit organization.

While AEI is a non-partisan, independent organization, it is widely regarded as conservative. Also, according to OpenSecrets, the author of the article in question in the ad, Alex Brill, in the past two years has donated $7,250 to a variety of Republican PACs and candidates, including Tom Cotton, Republican candidate for Arkansas fourth district, Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA 21st).

Brill disputed claims he is partisan or conservative.

"Any attempt by the Obama campaign or its surrogates to attack me personally as either a conservative or a partisan suggests to me that they are unable to refute the facts I have presented in my article," he said.

9News has reached out to Mr. Brill to ask for more clarification on claims he is non-partisan.

Then, there's the claim President Obama and the liberals will raise taxes on the middle class by $4,000. This is debatable as well.

The amount is not based on any tax plan President Obama has introduced. It's only based on one estimate of how much people could pay in yearly taxes until 2022 under President Obama's proposed budget.

The analysis looks at people that make $100,000 to $200,000 a year. The ad goes on to say Mitt Romney's tax plan won't raise taxes on the middle class. That's still debatable.

At this point, we don't know enough about Romney's tax plan to know whether this prediction will come true.

BOTTOM LINE:
If you're doing your own Truth Tests, it's good to know there are lots of studies and supposedly "non-partisan" claims out there. But most of them require more research to see exactly just how non-partisan these studies actually are.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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