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AP ‘Fact-Checks’ Obama’s Latest SOTU Address

From a very gentle Associated Press:

Fact check: Less than meets eye in Obama speech

By CALVIN WOODWARD | January 28, 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama promised to clear red tape away from highway projects that actually are stalled because there’s no money for them, not because rules are in the way. He’s ordering a higher minimum wage for a sliver of the workforce, which affects no one now and not many later.

Going it alone — without Congress making a law — just doesn’t go as far as Obama made it sound at times Tuesday night in his State of the Union speech.

Apparently, Mr. Woodward is disappointed Obama might not go far enough with his dictatorial plans.

And when he talked about his health care law — a source of Obama misstatements in the past — he hit another fact bump…

OBAMA: "Because of this (health care) law, no American can ever again be dropped or denied coverage for a preexisting condition like asthma, back pain or cancer. No woman can ever be charged more just because she’s a woman. And we did all this while adding years to Medicare’s finances, keeping Medicare premiums flat, and lowering prescription costs for millions of seniors."

THE FACTS: Some Medicare premiums have gone up, not stayed flat…

Medicare’s monthly premium for outpatient care has gone up in recent years…  Obama’s health care law also raised Medicare premiums for upper-income beneficiaries, and both the president and Republicans have proposed to expand that…

And never mind Obama is killing off Medicare Advantage. Oh, and never mind that nothing he has done is going to add years to Medicare’s finances. In fact, taking $600 billion from Medicare will have the opposite effect.

OBAMA: "Today, after four years of economic growth, corporate profits and stock prices have rarely been higher, and those at the top have never done better. But average wages have barely budged. Inequality has deepened. Upward mobility has stalled."

THE FACTS: The most recent evidence suggests that mobility hasn’t worsened. A team of economists led by Harvard’s Raj Chetty released a study last week that found the United States isn’t any less socially mobile than it was in the 1970s. Looking at children born between 1971 and 1993, the economists found that the odds of a child born in the poorest 20 percent of families making it into the top 20 percent hasn’t changed..

What’s this?! And this is from Harvard?

By the way, the AP doesn’t bother to mention it. But according to the New York Times back in August 31st, income inequality has actually increased at a rate four times faster under Obama than under his evil predecessor, President Bush. But for some reason we never hear about that statistic.

OBAMA: "We’ll need Congress to protect more than 3 million jobs by finishing transportation and waterways bills this summer.  But I will act on my own to slash bureaucracy and streamline the permitting process for key projects, so we can get more construction workers on the job as fast as possible."

THE FACTS: Cutting rules and regulations doesn’t address what’s holding up most transportation projects, which is lack of money. The federal Highway Trust Fund will run out of money in August without action. To finance infrastructure projects, Obama wants Congress to raise taxes on businesses that keep profits or jobs overseas, but that idea has been a political nonstarter

Er, isn’t the Keystone Pipeline a transportation matter? Why didn’t that even rate a mention?

OBAMA: "More than 9 million Americans have signed up for private health insurance or Medicaid coverage."

THE FACTS: That’s not to say 9 million more Americans have gained insurance under the law.

The administration says about 6 million people have been determined to be eligible for Medicaid since Oct. 1 and an additional 3 million roughly have signed up for private health insurance through the new markets created by the health care law. That’s where Obama’s number of 9 million comes from. But it’s unclear how many in the Medicaid group were already eligible for the program or renewing existing coverage.

According to Sean Trende at Real Clear Politics, the numbers of actual new (first time) enrolless to Medicaid is probably closer to 400,000 than 6 million. Which is quite a difference.

Likewise, it’s not known how many of those who signed up for private coverage were previously insured…

The people in the industry, like the CEO of Aetna, say that only 11% of sign-ups for Obama-Care insurance have come from people who were previously uninsured.

OBAMA: "In the coming weeks, I will issue an executive order requiring federal contractors to pay their federally funded employees a fair wage of at least $10.10 an hour, because if you cook our troops’ meals or wash their dishes, you shouldn’t have to live in poverty."

THE FACTS: This would be a hefty boost in the federal minimum wage, now $7.25, but not many would see it.

Most employees of federal contractors already earn more than $10.10. About 10 percent of those workers, roughly 200,000, might be covered by the higher minimum wage. But there are several wrinkles. The increase would not take effect until 2015 at the earliest and it doesn’t apply to existing federal contracts, only new ones. Renewed contracts also will be exempt from Obama’s order unless other terms of the agreement change, such as the type of work or number of employees needed…

Oh, and never mind that this tiny sliver of federal workers are mostly janitorial and cafeteria workers who just happen to be represented by the SEIU. The union that seems to own Obama lock stock and barrel.

So Obama is just looking out for his own, here.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, January 29th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “AP ‘Fact-Checks’ Obama’s Latest SOTU Address”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    Well, in an Obama Economy the check won’t clear ..

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