[M]ost people agree that we should not raise taxes on middle-class families or small businesses -- not when so many folks are just trying to get by... And that’s why I’m calling on Congress to extend the tax cuts for the 98 percent of Americans who make less than $250,000 for another year... If Congress doesn’t do this, millions of American families... could see their taxes go up by $2,200 starting on January 1st of next year.The statement was repeated on the White House blog later that day, and now appears dozens of times on the website and continues to pop up in Obama's speeches as well. Today, continuing a pattern I have noted before, the Obama campaign extracted a dollar figure from a policy proposal (what $40 means, $1,000 increase on student loans) and began to reshape and distort it to maximize its impact without regard for honesty:
Use the hashtagNote the wording: "the President’s middle-class tax cut". This is the same administration that has balked at referring to the current rates as "the Bush tax cuts," and now has appropriated that label for the President himself. And it's not even a new cut, simply a continuation of current tax policy. The only answers the president should have received via Twitter should read: "I will spend the $2,200 on the same expenses I used it for in 2012 because my taxes are not being cut." However, the president's followers on Twitter were much more creative in their replies:
#2200dollars to share how the President’s middle-class tax cut would help your family next year.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) August 2, 2012
@barackobama a #2200dollars would help my fiancé and myself get married (something we've been saving for a year and a half)
— Kristopher Wazaney (@therealwuz) August 2, 2012
@barackobama #2200dollars is a house payment, a car payment and groceries and a couple of relaxing weekends out!
— BobbiKing (@BobbiKing) August 2, 2012
#2200dollars can help me start my daughters college fund.
— Edwin Gomez (@ego_32) August 2, 2012
Was the creativity of the tweeters just an effort to make the president look good? Or do these people, based on the president's own words, believe they've got a new $2,200 windfall headed their way in 2013? One could hardly blame them for believing the latter. But if they manage to get him reelected, it'll be too late in 2013 when Net Pay on their paychecks stays the same. Unless the Social Security tax holiday is allowed to expire and Net Pay actually gets lower. The president has been silent about that tax matter. Could it be that the Social Security tax holiday issue is being reserved by the Democrats as a homemade October Surprise issue? If so, look for a repeat of the pattern I detailed above. Who knows, maybe they'll even resurrect What $40 Means.
@barackobama #2200dollars could help my parents pay for the three kids they are helping to put through college!
— Abby Cowan (@abbencowey) August 2, 2012
Update: Thanks to Ed Morrissey (Obamateurism of the Day on 8/8/12)