Friday, October 31st, 2014

Obama's Hoosier math

No, there aren't as many Hoosier households getting tax breaks as Obama claimed in his Indiana speech.
No, there aren't as many Hoosier households getting tax breaks as Obama claimed in his Indiana speech.

When President Barack Obama gave a speech on the economy in Wakarusa, Ind., on Aug. 5, 2009, one of his statements raised the eyebrows of one alert PolitiFact reader.

Obama, touting an element of his stimulus package, said that a tax cut “began showing up in paychecks of 4.8 million Indiana households about three months ago.”

That struck our reader as odd because the Census Bureau pegs Indiana’s population at 6.3 million, of which one quarter are under 18. What’s the likelihood that the remaining 4.8 million Indiana adults each constitute their own household?

Not likely at all.

When we asked the Indiana Department of Revenue how many tax returns are filed annually in the state, they said the number is around 3.2 million, and that includes both joint filers and individuals.

So clearly Obama was wrong. A White House official confirmed for us that it was a goof, pure and simple. A staffer mistakenly used the number of households in Illinois in Obama's speech, 4.8 million, instead of Indiana, which is 2.4 million.

So there aren't as many Hoosier households as Obama claimed, and he earns a False on the Truth-O-Meter.