Pundits from both sides of the aisle have lauded Mitt Romneyâs strong debate performance, praising his preparedness and ability to challenge President Obamaâs policies and accomplishments. But Romney only accomplished this goal by repeatedly misleading viewers. He spoke for 38 minutes of the 90 minute debate and told at least 27 myths: 1) â[G]et us energy independent, North American energy independent. That creates about 4 million jobsâ. Romneyâs plan for âenergy independenceâ actually relies heavily on a study that assumes the U.S. continues with fuel efficiency standards set by the Obama administration. For instance, he uses Citigroup research based off the assumption that ââthe United States will continue with strict fuel economy standards that will lower its oil demand.â Since he promises to undo the Obama administrationâs new fuel efficiency standards, he would cut oil consumption savings of 2 million barrels per day by 2025. 2) âI donât have a $5 trillion tax cut. I donât have a tax cut of a scale that youâre talking about.â A Tax Policy Center analysis of Romneyâs proposal for a 20 percent across-the-board tax cut in all federal income tax rates, eliminating the Alternative Minimum Tax, eliminating the estate tax and other tax reductions, would reduce federal revenue $480 billion in 2015. This amounts to $5 trillion over the decade. 3) âMy view is that we ought to provide tax relief to people in the middle class. But Iâm not going to reduce the share of taxes paid by high-income people.â If Romney hopes to provide tax relief to the middle class, then his $5 trillion tax cut would add to the deficit. There are not enough deductions in the tax code that primarily benefit rich people to make his math work. 4) âMy â my number-one principal is, there will be no tax cut that adds to the deficit. I want to underline that: no tax cut that adds to the deficit.â As the Tax Policy Center concluded, Romneyâs plan canât both exempt middle class families from tax cuts and remain revenue neutral. âHeâs promised all these things and he canât do them all. In order for him to cover the cost of his tax cut without adding to the deficit, heâd have to find a way to raise taxes on middle income people or people making less than $200,000 a year,â the Center found. 5) âI will not under any circumstances raise taxes on middle-income families. I will lower taxes on middle-income families. Now, you cite a study. There are six other studies that looked at the study you describe and say itâs completely wrong.â The studies Romney cites actually further prove that Romney would, in fact, have to raise taxes on the middle class if he were to keep his promise not to lose revenue with his tax rate reduction. 6) âI saw a study that came out today that said youâre going to raise taxes by $3,000 to $4,000 on middle-income families.â Romney is pointing to this study from the American Enterprise Institute. It actually found that rather than raise taxes to pay down the debt, the Obama administrationâs policies â those contained directly in his budget â would reduce the share of taxes that go toward servicing the debt by $1,289.89 per taxpayer in the $100,000 to $200,000 range. 7) âAnd the reason is because small business pays that individual rate; 54 percent of Americaâs workers work in businesses that are taxed not at the corporate tax rate, but at the individual tax rateâ¦.97 percent of the businesses are not â not taxed at the 35 percent tax rate, theyâre taxed at a lower rate. But those businesses that are in the last 3 percent of businesses happen to employ half â half of all the people who work in small business.â Far less than half of the people affected by the expiration of the upper income tax cuts get any of their income at all from a small businesses. And those people could very well be receiving speaking fees or book royalties, which qualify as âsmall business incomeâ but donât have a direct impact on job creation. Itâs actually hard to find a small business who think that they will be hurt if the marginal tax rate on income earned above $250,000 per year is increased. 8) âMr. President, all of the increase in natural gas and oil has happened on private land, not on government land. On government land, your administration has cut the number of permits and licenses in half.â Oil production from federal lands is higher, not lower: Production from federal lands is up slightly in 2011 when compared to 2007. And the oil and gas industry is sitting on 7,000 approved permits to drill, that it hasnât begun exploring or developing. 9) âThe presidentâs put it in place as much public debt â almost as much debt held by the public as all prior presidents combined.â This is not even close to being true. When Obama took office, the national debt stood at $10.626 trillion. Now the national debt is over $16 trillion. That $5.374 trillion increase is nowhere near as much debt as all the other presidents combined. 10) âThatâs why the National Federation of Independent Businesses said your plan will kill 700,000 jobs. I donât want to kill jobs in this environment.â That study, produced by a right-wing advocacy organization, doesnât analyze what Obama has actually proposed. 11) âWhat we do have right now is a setting where Iâd like to bring money from overseas back to this country.â Romneyâs plan to shift the country to a territorial tax system would allow corporations to do business and make profits overseas without ever being taxed on it in the United States. This encourages American companies to invest abroad and could cost the country up to 800,000 jobs. 12) âI would like to take the Medicaid dollars that go to states and say to a state, youâre going to get what you got last year, plus inflation, plus 1 percent, and then youâre going to manage your care for your poor in the way you think best.â Sending federal Medicaid funding to the states in the form of a block grant woud significantly reduce federal spending for Medicaid because the grant would not keep up with projected health care costs. A CBO estimate of a very similar proposal from Paul Ryan found that federal spending would be â35 percent lower in 2022 and 49 percent lower in 2030 than current projected federal spendingâ and as a result âstates would face significant challenges in achieving sufficient cost savings through efficiencies to mitigate the loss of federal funding.â âTo maintain current service levels in the Medicaid program, states would probably need to consider additional changes, such as reducing their spending on other programs or raising additional revenues,â the CBO found. 13) âI want to take that $716 billion youâve cut and put it back into Medicareâ¦. But the idea of cutting $716 billion from Medicare to be able to balance the additional cost of Obamacare is, in my opinion, a mistake. Thereâs that number again. Romney is claiming that Obamacare siphons off $716 billion from Medicare, to the detriment of beneficiaries. In actuality, that money is saved primarily through reducing over-payments to insurance companies under Medicare Advantage, not payments to beneficiaries. Paul Ryanâs budget plan keeps those same cuts, but directs them toward tax cuts for the rich and deficit reduction. 14) âWhat I support is no change for current retirees and near-retirees to Medicare.â Here is how Romneyâs Medicare plan will affect current seniors: 1) by repealing Obamacare, the 16 million seniors receiving preventive benefits without deductibles or co-pays and are saving $3.9 billion on prescription drugs will see a cost increase, 2) âpremium supportâ will increase premiums for existing beneficiaries as private insurers lure healthier seniors out of the traditional Medicare program, 3) Romney/Ryan would also lower Medicaid spending significantly beginning next year, shifting federal spending to states and beneficiaries, and increasing costs for the 9 million Medicare recipients who are dependent on Medicaid. 15) âNumber two is for people coming along that are young, what I do to make sure that we can keep Medicare in place for them is to allow them either to choose the current Medicare program or a private plan. Their choice. They get to choose â and theyâll have at least two plans that will be entirely at no cost to them.â The Medicare program changes for everyone, even people who choose to remain in the traditional fee-for-service. Rather than relying on a guaranteed benefit, all beneficiaries will receive a premium support credit of $7,500 on average in 2023 to purchase coverage in traditional Medicare or private insurance. But that amount will only grow at a rate of GDP plus 1.5 percentage points and will not keep up with health care costs. So while the federal government will spend less on the program, seniors will pay more in premiums.