The Truth-O-Meter Says:

Under Obama's tax plan, "95 percent of you will get a tax cut."

Barack Obama on Friday, September 26th, 2008 in Oxford, Miss.

Many will get tax cuts, but not that many

At the presidential debate in Oxford, Miss., Barack Obama described his tax plan and said, "Here's what I can tell the American people: 95 percent of you will get a tax cut."

We checked a similar claim of Obama's recently, that 95 percent of working families would get lower taxes under Obama's plan, and found it to be True .

But Obama stretched things when he said that 95 percent of "you" — everyone — would receive a tax cut.

The part of Obama's tax plan that results in widespread tax cuts is a tax credit for workers, intended to offset payroll taxes. Single workers would get $500, and working couples would get $1,000.

But not all taxpayers get paychecks from an employer, and those who don't would not get the credit. Additionally, Obama intends to raise taxes on higher brackets ($200,000 for singles and $250,000 for couples) which would offset any tax cuts for those incomes.

A detailed analysis by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center found that if you look at all tax filers, 81 percent of tax filers would see reduced taxes under the Obama plan.

So Obama's statement at the debate glosses over a few important details about who would get tax cuts under his plan. If you're talking about everyone, it's 81 percent. If you're talking about working families, it's 95 percent. The difference between 81 percent and 95 percent is not insignificant. We rule his debate statement Half True.

About this statement:

Published: Saturday, September 27th, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.

Subjects: Taxes


Internal Revenue Service, Tax statistics for 2006

The Tax Policy Center, Married Families: McCain and Obama tax plans , Aug. 25, 2008

Interview with Bob Williams of the Tax Policy Center


Written by: Angie Drobnic Holan
Researched by: Angie Drobnic Holan
Edited by: Amy Hollyfield

How to contact us:

We want to hear your suggestions and comments.

For tips or comments on our Obameter and our GOP-Pledge-O-Meter promise databases, please e-mail the Obameter. If you are commenting on a specific promise, please include the wording of the promise.

For comments about our Truth-O-Meter or Flip-O-Meter items, please e-mail the Truth-O-Meter. We’re especially interested in seeing any chain e-mails you receive that you would like us to check out. If you send us a comment, we'll assume you don't mind us publishing it unless you tell us otherwise.

Browse The Truth-O-MeterTM: