Progressive group’s report details cost of Romney plans to Iowans

Center for American Progress Action Fund touring Iowa to spread message

April 1, 2014 | 2:03 am

Betting that Iowa’s battleground state voters will grow weary of competing attack ads as the presidential campaign grinds on, a progressive group is offering its analysis of the Romney-Ryan policy proposals.

“We think they are going to be looking for some data on the Romney-Ryan policies that ask the middle class to pay more so the wealthiest Americans and huge corporations can pay less,” Tom Perriello, president of The Center for American Progress Action Fund, said before a presentation in Cedar Rapids Tuesday.

The former Virginia congressman is visiting Iowa as part of a “just-the-facts tour” to bring the presidential campaign debate down to the kitchen table level, Perriello said.

“Iowans are tired of the ads and hungry for facts, and this report lays out the evidence behind the fact that Romney's plan would mean higher taxes, tuition, and health care costs for middle class families,” Perriello said about the action fund’s “Romney University” report on the “True Cost of Romney-Ryan to Iowans.”

However, the Romney campaign questioned Perriello’s impartiality in the presidential campaign. The center was created by John Podesta, who ran President Obama’s White House transition team. At least six other members of the center were members of the Obama transition effort.

In 2010, the only campaign appearance Obama made on behalf of a Democratic congressional candidate was for Perriello.

Beyond that, Romney spokesman Shawn McCoy said Obama is the only candidate running with a plan to increase taxes on small businesses and job creators.

“Middle class families are facing a $4,000 tax increase because of the debt President Obama has already racked up and the new spending he is proposing,” McCoy said. “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have a plan to deliver a real recovery with pro-growth solutions that will lower tax rates, increase take-home pay, and bring relief to the middle class.”

However, Perriello said the center’s report is based on the plans and numbers in the Romney-Ryan proposals. Also, he’s challenged the Romney campaign to point out anything in its analysis that is incorrect.

“We haven’t heard from them,” he said.

The key findings of the report include:

  • Iowa millionaires would get an additional $87,000 in tax breaks while middle-class families would pay up to $1,900 more in health care taxes and $1,066 more in taxes on their mortgages.
  • The state stands to lose more than $23.6 billion in federal funding from 2013 through 2022, an average of more than $2.3 billion a year, from cuts to schools, law enforcement, highway repairs, job-training programs and more.
  • Seniors in Iowa would pay at least $585 per year more for their prescription drugs each year and the Romney-Ryan Medicare voucher plan would cost seniors at least $11,000 more out of pocket.

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