CNN's Erin Burnett took only four minutes on October 23 to destroy the Obama administration's claim that the President's budget plan would eliminate $4 trillion in deficit spending over the next decade, a television segment that sent the Obama campaign into damage control mode for the past week.
While the Obama followed up with new figures for CNN reporters, Burnett concluded in an October 25 segment that even with the new figures the Obama campaign's math “it still doesn't seem to add up.”
Burnett's original October 22 segment noted of a new Obama campaign brochure, that “They put a lot of time and effort into this glossy thing, because three-and-a-half million copies are going to be mailed to swing state households. Millions more are going to be given out door-to-door.… So what new information warranted this big campaign roll-out, just two weeks before election day? Well, nothing really. And the campaign admits as much.”
Burnett then used an audio segment of Senior Obama Campaign Advisor David Axelrod, who admitted that Obama's new plan was the same as Obama's old plan. Burnett then went on to deconstruct the Obama deficit claims:
What we've got is a fancy repackaging of the ideas we've heard before.… Here's the problem. Some of these ideas still don't add up. So let's take the core of it: The President's tax and deficit plan. According to the glossy, and I'll read it here, “President Obama's plan reduces the deficit by more than $4 trillion over the next decade.” How, you might ask? Well, first, the President includes a trillion dollars in spending cuts already signed into law last year. So those are cuts already on the books, no matter who's in the Oval Office. So, maybe then it's $3 trillion. But next, the President says “The plan makes sure that millionaires aren't paying lower tax rates than many middle class families.” Now, to that end, the President plans to let the Bush tax cuts expire for households making above $250,000 a year. According to the Joint Committee on Taxation, that would reduce the deficit by just $829 billion over the next ten years, not even a quarter of the $4 trillion that the President says he's going to guarantee. Now, the President also says he'll get there by cutting corporate loopholes and cutting spending. Of course, he doesn't say what loopholes or what spending. Sound familiar?
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Photo: CNN anchor Carol Costello, left, and talk show host Joy Behar, right, flank CNN host Erin Burnett at a party launching her show, "Erin Burnett Outfront," on Sept. 27, 2011 in New York: AP Images