The Campaign Spot

Weren’t Democrats Supposed to Be Running on, Not Away From, Health-Care Reform?

The Democrat who’s running for Rep. John Murtha’s seat, Mark Critz, explicitly says he opposes the health-care bill.

He also accuses Republican Tim Burns of supporting “tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas.” It’s the same attack made against Charles Djou in Hawaii’s special election; the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee must have bought these cookie-cutter attack ads in bulk.

Except as I and others have pointed out, Djou, Burns, and almost every other Republican running this year support tax cuts for all businesses; this is akin to contending that someone who wants to reduce the payroll tax supports tax cuts for serial killers. And no less a source than FactCheck.org is calling the attack nonsense:

A new Democratic attack ad accuses a Republican House candidate in Hawaii of signing a pledge protecting tax breaks for sending jobs overseas. It could be a prototype of future attack ads against any number of other Republican House members and candidates, most of whom have signed the anti-tax pledge in question.

But we find the ad to be false. The pledge only protects corporations from an increase in taxation overall. It explicitly allows elimination of any specific tax deduction or credit if matched dollar-for-dollar by an overall cut in rates. And it says nothing about jobs.

Of course, FactCheck.org should have a bit of sympathy for Critz; he can’t spend the entire ad talking about how much he disagrees with the Democrats’ agenda.

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