FACT CHECK: Second Debate Brings More Deceptions/Distortions from a Desperate Congressman Sestak
For Immediate Release—October 22, 2010
Contact: Nachama Soloveichik • Communications Director • 484.809.7994 • 646.528.1029
Contact: Kristin Anderson • Deputy Communications Director • 484.809.7994 • 612.280.5196
Contact: Tim Kelly • Press Secretary • 484.809.7994
Pittsburgh, PA – For the second time this week, Congressman Joe Sestak repeated a host of outrageous falsehoods, and even managed to squeeze in a couple new oness. Too bad the truth isn’t on his side.
FALSEHOOD: Joe Sestak is an indepdendent.
TRUTH: Joe Sestak who voted with Nancy Pelosi on every major issue:
- The continuation of the Wall Street bailout (RC #27, 01/22/09).
- The auto bailout (RC #690, 12/10/08)
- The stimulus (RC #70, 02/13/09)
- A second stimulus (RC #991, 12/16/09)
- Cash for clunkers (RC #314, 06/09/09) (RC #682, 07/31/10)
- Government-run health care (RC #165, 3/21/10)
- The cap-and-trade energy tax (RC #477, 06/26/09)
- Raising the debt limit to $14.3 trillion (RC #46, 02/04/10)
- The FY 2009 Omnibus bill (RC #86, 02/25/09)
- The FY 2010 Omnibus bill (RC #949, 12/10/09)
- President Obama’s FY 2010 budget (RC #192, 04/02/09)
- Card Check (Thomas.gov, RC #118 03/01/07)
FALSEHOOD: Joe Sestak would be open to drilling in Marcellus Shale
TRUTH: Joe Sestak is the only candidate to call for a moratorium on drilling
Congressman Sestak is the only statewide candidate pushing for a job-killing moratorium, saying at a town hall meeting earlier this month: “I have, in an op-ed last year, said we need a moratorium until we get the environmental safeguards correct . . . My take is, this is a boon only if done, however, under a correct environmental safeguard that is not there—it is just not there—I believe that because I don’t know what’s going in and I don’t know how we can best protect what’s going in. Until we have that, we should have a moratorium” (Town Hall Meeting, 06/12/10).
Both Democratic Governor Ed Rendell and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Dan Onorato have come out against the moratorium.
Dan Onorato: “A moratorium is not the answer. That just stops everything. This is a golden opportunity for Pennsylvania.” (WTAE ABC, 06/21/10)
Governor Rendell: “If you’re looking for a way to produce energy that is mistake-free, stop looking. What we have to do is draw the balance the right way and try to prevent as much damage (as possible) from happening.” (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 06/13/10)
In 2010, natural gas extraction in the Marcellus Shale is projected to create 88,000 jobs in Pennsylvania, according to a recent Penn State study. In 2009, the Marcellus Shale created more than 44,000 jobs in Pennsylvania and added $389 million in state and local revenue. (The Pennsylvania State University College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering, May 2010)
FALSEHOOD: Pat Toomey is a Wall Street lobbyist.
TRUTH: WTAE-TV News already debunked this attack, saying last month: “That’s false. Toomey has never been a lobbyist. We checked the records. Toomey is not now, and never was a registered lobbyists” (WTAE ABC, 09/23/10). The Philadelphia Inquirer similarly wrote: Philadelphia Inquirer: “Further, Toomey is not now, nor has he ever been – a registered lobbyist according to records kept by the Clerk of the U.S. House and the Secretary of the Senate.” (Philadelphia Inquirer, 09/20/10).
FALSEHOOD: Sestak did not vote for a version of the bill to outlaw private health insurance.
TRUTH: Sestak voted for a version of the health care bill in the Education & Labor Committee that contained a Dennis Kucinich amendment that would allow states to outlaw private health care altogether (Education & Labor Committee, 07/17/09). If Congressman Sestak was so opposed to the amendment, why did he vote to move the bill out of committee?
FALSEHOOD: Pat Toomey was not a real small business owner.
TRUTH: Many individuals who have worked with Pat Toomey during his years as a small business owner between 1991 – 1998 have testified to Pat’s daily involvement in the business. During that time, Pat’s restaurant business was his sole source of income and the business created hundreds of jobs in the Lehigh Valley.
The current owner of Rookies has stated: “Pat hired me to be the Vice President of Operations for Rookies in Allentown. Working with Pat was a great opportunity and one I appreciate to this day. Together, we did all the stuff that lots of small business folks do to make their businesses successful. We set goals; we established budgets; we met periodically to measure the progress on those goals; we made personnel decisions; and we updated and revised our menu periodically, among many other things. In my book, Pat was as hard a working small business owner as any I’ve met and he helped create many jobs in the Lehigh Valley.” – Bill Smedile, current owner of Rookies
FALSEHOOD: Joe Sestak supported PayGo, Pat Toomey didn't.
TRUTH: Pat Toomey voted for a much stricter version of PayGo than Joe Sestak’s version. Pat voted for the Spending Control act of 2004 which set statutory caps on discretionary spending and instituted pay-as-you-go rules that would require mandatory spending increases to be offset (RC #318, 06/24/04).
Congressman Sestak voted against a cap on discretionary spending (RC #611, 07/22/09) and voted for over $1 trillion in PayGo exemptions and waivers.
FALSEHOOD: Joe Sestak supports small businesses, while Pat Toomey supports large corporations.
TRUTH: Congressman Sestak has voted for legislation that will cost Pennsylvanians tens of thousands of jobs. These include the cap-and-trade energy tax (RC #477, 06/26/09) that was opposed by 44 democrats, including 4 Pennsylvania Democrats; the government-run health care bill that would impose billions of dollars in taxes on small businesses (RC #165, 3/21/10); and Card Check legislation (RC #118, 03/01/07) which could lead to the loss of 600,000 jobs (Alliance to Save Main Street Jobs, 03/05/09). There is only one candidate in this race that has been endorsed by the largest association of small businesses – the National Federation of Independent Business – and that is Pat Toomey.
FALSEHOOD: Pat Toomey’s policies will endanger Pennsylvania’s law enforcement community.
TRUTH: Pat Toomey is the only candidate in this Senate race to receive the endorsement of Pennsylvania’s law enforcement community. Pat was endorsed by the Pennsylvania Fraternal Order of Police, the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police, and the Pennsylvania State Troopers Associations. Congressman Sestak met with these groups, but they chose to endorse Pat Toomey over Congressman Sestak.
Joe Sestak also claimed tonight the endorsement of various F.O.P. Lodges. A quick Google search reveals zero such endorsements.
FALSEHOOD: Pat Toomey has never released a list of earmarks
TRUTH: "Toomey releases list of earmarks" (Morning Call, 9/11/2010).