The Plank

John Mccain Thinks You Are Stupid

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Here's John McCain, speaking today to an audience in Concord, North Carolina: 

You might ask: How do you cut income taxes for 95 percent of Americans, when more than 40 percent pay no income taxes right now? How do you reduce the number zero? Well, that's the key to Barack Obama's whole plan: Since you can't reduce taxes on those who pay zero, the government will write them all checks called a tax credit. And the Treasury will have to cover those checks by taxing other people, including a lot of folks just like Joe. In other words, Barack Obama's plan to raise taxes on some in order to give checks to others is not a tax cut; it's just another government giveaway.

And here's McCain, again, in the very same speech:

I will provide every single American family with a $5000 refundable tax credit to help them purchase health care insurance. 

This is from the prepared remarks, but I assume that's the way he gave the speech. For the last two days or so, his advisers have been attacking Obama's refundable tax credits as "welfare," "socialism," and a "govenrment giveaway," even though--as countless observers have noted--McCain's own health care plan also includes a refundable tax credit.

Presidential campaigns are full of hypocrisy, of course. But I can't remember the last time a candidate was this brazen about it. It makes you wonder what McCain thinks about the public's power of perception.

--Jonathan Cohn 

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