You might have heard it on the campaign trail, on cable news, in liberal op-eds: Mitt Romney wants to cut taxes by $5 trillion.
It's not true. Mitt Romney has never proposed a tax plan that would cut revenue by $5 trillion. But here's why the little fib exists.
Mitt Romney has proposed cutting federal income tax rates by 20 percent, a change that, on its own, would lower revenue by almost $5 trillion over the next 10 years. But he's also proposed cutting tax spending by the same amount; keeping today's low rates for families making less than $250,000; and keeping the current tax burden on the highest earners. These proposals cannot all be true at the same time, according to analysis from the Tax Policy Center. In fact, the Romney tax plan is something of a myth.
But liberals risk constructing a parallel myth when they suggest that Romney's plan would cut taxes by $5 trillion when in fact his proposal is to cut taxes by zero dollars. If you don't believe his plan, then you don't believe his plan. If you think he's lying about his plan, then you think he's lying. But there's a big difference between saying Mitt Romney's lying/has proposed a fantasy tax plan and saying Mitt Romney's tax plan cuts taxes by $5 trillion. The first is opinion. The second is false.