Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic National Convention was full of statistics regarding the economy, job creation, policy, and President Barack Obama’s influence on all three. Factcheck.org and USA Today found something interesting: His stats check out. All of them, in fact, aside from a couple of minor exaggerations.
Facts checked out to be true include the following:
Clinton: “So who’s right? Well, since 1961, for 52 years now, the Republicans have held the White House 28 years, the Democrats 24. In those 52 years, our private economy has produced 66 million private-sector jobs. So what’s the job score? Republicans: twenty-four million. Democrats: forty-two.”
This checks out to be true, as also reported by Bloomberg in May.
Another statistic he quoted was that while congressional Republicans have done nothing to create new jobs in our country, they have, in fact, blocked the creation of at least a million. As reported by USA Today:
He also accused Republicans of blocking 1 million potential new jobs, but that checked out, too:
Clinton: Last year the Republicans blocked the president’s job plan, costing the economy more than a million new jobs.
Two independent economists — Mark Zandi of Moody’s Analytics and Joel Prakken of Macroeconomics Advisers — had estimated that Obama’s proposed American Jobs Act would add more than 1 million jobs. Zandi claimed it would add 1.9 million jobs; Prakken1.3 million. Senate Republicans blocked the $447 billion measure, and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell denounced it as “a charade that’s meant to give Democrats a political edge” in 2012.
The only things Clinton could be faulted for were minor exaggerations, as listed below in the same article written by USA Today in conjunction with Factchecker.org:
Clinton claimed Medicare will “go broke in 2016? if Romney is elected and repeals the federal health care law. Medicare will not “go broke,” but a part of it — the hospital insurance trust fund — would not be able to pay full benefits for hospital services. Physician and prescription drug benefits, financed separately out of general tax revenues and premiums, wouldn’t be affected.
As we explained in our Aug. 22 article, “A Campaign Full of Mediscare,” the Medicare hospital trust fund is on pace to be exhausted by 2024 — or by 2016 if the Affordable Care Act is repealed. But Medicare would still collect payroll taxes sufficient to pay most hospital bills that would come due. Medicare trustees estimate the fund could pay 87% of its costs. The funding gap would continue to grow, and by 2050 the fund could cover only 67% of its bills. That’s a serious situation to be sure, but it’s not as though Medicare itself would suddenly halt all payments.
Clinton also exaggerated when he said Obama’s 2009 stimulus bill “cut taxes for 95% of the American people.” That’s too high. The “Making Work Pay” tax credit cut taxes temporarily for about 95% of workers — those with “earned income.” But it didn’t benefit pensioners or the unemployed, for example. The nonpartisan Tax Policy Centerestimated in 2010 that it benefited 76% of all families and single individuals.
Clinton was substantially correct when he said oil imports were at “a near 20-year low.” He referred to a recent prediction that U.S. dependence on imported oil would fall this year to 42%, which Bloomberg News reported would be “the lowest level in two decades.”
Clinton stressed bipartisan coöperation and the Republican refusal over the last two years to do so: “We all know that he also tried to work with congressional Republicans on health care, debt reduction, and new jobs. And that didn’t work out so well. But it could have been because, as the Senate Republican leader said, in a remarkable moment of candor, two full years before the election, their number-one priority was not to put America back to work. It was to put the president out of work.” And another quote, “Unfortunately, the faction that now dominates the Republican Party doesn’t see it that way. They think government is always the enemy, they’re always right, and compromise is weakness. Just in the last couple of elections, they defeated two distinguished Republican senators because they dared to coöperate with Democrats on issues important to the future of the country, even national security.”
This clearly shows the Republican attitude: They have no wish to create a victory for our country. They only wish to beat their “opponents.” It’s clearly time we elect people who realize that there is no “enemy” here. We’re all American, and what is good for America is good for us. Romney isn’t that choice. Why are people who believe the government is the enemy running for governmental positions? Isn’t that odd? Do they consider themselves enemies of the American people?
He also stressed education, science, and progressive economics: “We know that investments in education and infrastructure and scientific and technological research increase growth. They increase good jobs, and they create new wealth for all the rest of us.” Clinton also stated that “The old economy is not coming back! We’ve got to build a new one and educate people to do those jobs.”
So the president’s student loan reform is more important than ever. Here’s what it does. Here’s what it does. Here’s what it does.
You need to tell every voter where you live about this. It lowers the cost of federal student loans. And even more important, it gives students the right to repay those loans as a clear, fixed, low percentage of their income for up to 20 years.
Now, what does this mean? What does this mean? Think of it. It means no one will ever have to drop out of college again for fear they can’t repay their debt.
And it means — it means that if someone wants to take a job with a modest income, a teacher, a police officer, if they want to be a small-town doctor in a little rural area, they won’t have to turn those jobs down because they don’t pay enough to repay the debt. Their debt obligation will be determined by their salary. This will change the future for young Americans.
Clinton has now been proven to have given true statistics. He knows what he’s talking about. He has experience in office, experience running the country, and gives real statistics and facts, as opposed to the Republican nomination’s general attitude of “Obama didn’t clean our mess up soon enough. We’ll fix it. We’ll let you know how after the election.” And from the head pollster over in Romney’s camp: “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.”
The DNC has been about policy and what’s good for America. The RNC was nothing but a smear campaign designed to point out the faults of a democratic presidency. Take your pick. The transcript for the entire speech, as reported by The Washington Post, can be found here. A video of it is below.
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