In The News: Economy

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Barack Obama ad says Mitt Romney was No. 1 in state debt as Mass. governor

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Jun 12 2012

Tampa Bay Times / PolitiFact

"Massachusetts has had a high debt burden for decades, so governors are hamstrung to make any meaningful change in that picture in one or even two terms," said Michael J. Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, an independent group that analyzes budget and tax issues in Massachusetts
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Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts record: Proof of ‘strong leadership’?

Jun 12 2012

By Josh Hicks, The Fact Checker/The Washington Post

True to his word, Romney didn’t approve any general hikes in tax rates, but he did increase fees and close tax loopholes, both of which brought in additional revenue. The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation estimated that the former governor raised an extra $750 million per year through fees and loophole closures.

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Romney’s initiatives: Miracles or gimmickry?

Jun 10 2012

By Seth McLaughlin, The Washington Times

“His characterization on the campaign trail that he was able to balance the budget, and close the deficit through better management and reforms, that is simply not backed up by the facts,” said Michael J. Widmer, president of the nonpartisan Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, which regularly challenged aspects of Mr. Romney’s spending plans. “My overall comment about his approach, when you look at the substance of it, is that he [closed the budget gaps] the same way that governors forever have done it when they are facing fiscal crises, and that is to identify new sources of revenue and places to cut.”

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Romney touts his Massachusetts record as fiscal hawk

Jun 9 2012

By Michael Finnegan, The Los Angeles Times

But Michael J. Widmer, president of the nonpartisan Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said Romney was presenting "a decidedly incomplete and one-sided picture of what actually happened."

"There's a big gap," he said, "between the record and the rhetoric."

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Moore: Making Health Care Affordable

Jun 9 2012

By Richard Moore, The MetroWest Daily News

Health care is such a major part of our economy, a miscalculation could seriously set back the Commonwealth’s economic recovery — a recovery that is unsteady and that could easily be undercut by the current instability with our trading partners in Europe or by Draconian budgeting in Washington. Certainly, the highly regarded Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation shares this need for caution.



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Romney Remembered As CEO Governor

Jun 7 2012

CNN.com

Mike Widmer, a government watchdog with the nonpartisan Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, noted Romney set aside his CEO approach to woo Democratic leaders to pass health care reform.

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Obama Twists Romney’s Economic Record

Jun 7 2012

FactCheck.org

“The governor has very little control over our local economy,” said Michael Widmer, of the nonpartisan Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation. “The numbers are the numbers, but the larger reality is that these external forces are what really drove it. The numbers reflect larger economic realities.”

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Op-Ed: Mansfield - Facts and opinion about President Obama

Jun 7 2012

By Eric L. Mansfield, The Fayetteville Observer

In fact, during Romney's time as governor, Massachusetts ranked 47th out of 50 in job creation, and the state lost manufacturing jobs at twice the national average. ... According to the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, spending rose an average of 5 percent per year with state debt rising $2.6 billion in four years.

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House approves health care cost containment bill

Jun 6 2012

By Matt Murphy, Statehouse News Service

Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Michael Widmer last week called the House bill "seriously flawed." Noting that price caps and rate regulation "that have a long record of failure" and will place new costs on the system, Widmer said, "The House bill is a setback for health care consumers, the health care industry, and the future of the Massachusetts economy."

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Slanted take: Obama campaign on Romney’s Massachusetts record

Jun 5 2012

By Josh Hicks, The Fact Checker/The Washington Post

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, the Massachusetts Democratic Party and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who opposed Romney in the 2008 GOP primary, all estimated that the former governor raised a combined $750 million per year in additional revenue through fees and loophole closures.

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