Obama vs. McCain on Taxes: A Simple Video Explanation

| Fri Jun. 13, 2008 11:44 AM EDT

I don't say this often, but one of the major news networks did a really good job of digging into policy recently. Specifically, CNN was excellent when discussing the effects the Obama tax plan and the McCain tax plan would have on different income brackets. The numbers make things simple to understand:

This puts the lie to many McCain campaign claims. The most brazenly false ones are from McCain economic adviser and failed Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, who claimed that Obama has not proposed "a single tax cut" and wants to "raise every tax in the book." "Everything he's proposed is a tax increase, not a tax cut," she told Fox News. That's self-evidently false, if you (1) know anything about Obama's economic plan, which centers around a $1,000 tax cut for working families, or (2) have watched the video above.

The point here is not to get into a "our tax cuts are bigger!" argument, because tax cuts don't substitute for sound economic policy. And "tax relief," which the Obama campaign likes to say it is offering everyday folks, is most commonly used as a right wing framing device that justifies tax cuts for people who don't need them. Obama's economic proposals include much more than tax cuts: he is also proposing a stimulus package, help for struggling homeowners, and greater and more effective oversight of the financial sector.

But people tend to focus more on taxes than on any of those things, so let's make sure everyone knows how Obama and McCain stack up. The differences are stark.

Update: More here for those who want to dig deeper.

Get Mother Jones by Email - Free. Like what you're reading? Get the best of MoJo three times a week.