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New GOP Ad Hits Clinton on Abandoning Tax Break; Clinton Hits Back

July 11, 1996

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Responding in less than 24 hours to a Republican ad critical of President Clinton on taxes, the Clinton campaign released a new television spot today: ``The real Bob Dole, 35 years of higher taxes.″

The Republican National Committee ad released Wednesday accused President Clinton of signing ``the largest tax increase in history.″

``Under Clinton, the typical American family now pays over $1,500 more in federal taxes _ a big price to pay for his broken promise,″ the GOP ad says. The ad was slated to run in 53 markets, at a cost of $1 million.

A White House official denounced the ad’s main claims as ``completely untrue,″ and the Clinton campaign defended the president’s tax record and took the opportunity to focus on Dole’s tax record today.

The Clinton spot refers to his expansion of a tax credit to help low-income working families and his election-year proposal for tax credits to pay for higher education.

``Dole voted to raise payroll taxes; social security taxes, the ’90 income tax increase, $900 billion in higher taxes,″ the ad said.

The new Clinton spot also shows Dole promising, ``You’re going to see the real Bob Dole from now on.″

``The real Bob Dole,″ the announcer says. ``Thirty-five years of higher taxes.″

The RNC spot replaced two RNC ads currently on the air in about a dozen states _ one touting Bob Dole’s record, the other critical of the Clinton administration on illegal immigration.

Many Republicans had hoped it would coincide with the announcement of Dole’s economic plan, which is expected to include tax-cutting proposals. But Dole and his advisers continue debating how large a tax cut to recommend.

The ad begins with a video of candidate Clinton calling for tax relief for the middle class in 1992, the ad criticizes him for not following through on the pledge.

``Six months later, he gave us the largest tax increase in history,″ the announcer says.

Clinton pushed through higher income taxes on the wealthy and a 4.3 cent-per-gallon hike in the gasoline tax in 1993. Democrats say the income tax hike aided deficit reduction.

White House economic adviser Gene Sperling said that the income tax hike affected only the wealthiest 1.2 percent of Americans, while a tax credit was expanded for those making less than $28,000 a year.

Sperling protested that several independent analyses show a 1982 tax increase _ passed under Ronald Reagan with the help of Bob Dole _ was bigger.

He also called the claim that the typical American family is paying $1,500 more is ``a baldfaced lie, completely untrue.″ Citing Treasury figures, Sperling said the effective tax rate for median income families was slightly lower than when Clinton took office.

``The only tax that affected an average working family was a 4.3 cent-per-gallon tax,″ which Sperling said cost an average family $3 per month.

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