WASHINGTON- During Tuesday night’s debate between Vice President Al Gore (D-Tenn.) and Gov. George W. Bush (R-Tex.), the vice president made many claims on topics ranging from Gov. Bush’s tax plan to how much pharmaceutical companies spent on advertising.

Below are a few of the more egregious statements made by Gore, followed by the facts to set the record straight on the issue.

Pharmaceutical Companies

Gore Statement: “But they are now spending more money on advertising and promotion you see all these ads than they are on research and development.”

Fact: In 1999, direct to consumer advertising accounted for 27 percent of the $6.6 billion pharmaceutical companies spent directly promoting their products to doctors and consumers increase in retail drug spending in 1999. (National Institute for Health Care Management Research and Education Foundation, http://www.nihcm.org/dtcbrief.pdf)

Fact: In 2000, the industry was expected to spend a record $26.4 billion on research and development, up from $24 billion in 1999. (PhRMA, PhRMA Annual Report 2000-2001)

Gov. George W. Bush’s Tax Plan

Gore statement: “He proposes spending more money for a tax cut just for the wealthiest one percent than all of the new money than he budgets for education, health care, and national defense combined.”

Fact: “…one cannot truthfully say the plan benefits the wealthy at the expense of the middle class or poor. In fact, an objective reading of the plan comes closer to revealing just the opposite. …the lower a family’s income, the bigger its percentage tax cut. Furthermore, the national share of federal taxes paid by people earning more than $100,000 would increase to 64 percent, from 62 percent. That’s perhaps not much of a shift (unless you are the one paying), but it clearly goes in the opposite direction from what Gore would have you believe. But still Gore continues to misrepresent the truth.” (editorial, “Ignoring the Numbers: Gore’s Tactics Divisive,” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, September 8, 2000)

Government Spending

Gore Statement: When asked if he was proposing the largest federal spending in years, Gore replied “Absolutely not.”

Fact: “These are very, very, very large spending increases. The vice president really has proposed a dramatic expansion in the role and cost of the federal government,” said Carol Cox Wait, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. “There’s really nothing like it until you go back to the spending programs of LBJ’s Great Society social-welfare spending…’” (Donald Lambro, “Federal Role Big in Gore Proposal; Spending Increase Largest Since LBJ,” The Washington Times, September 20, 2000)

Gore’s “Targeted” Tax Cuts Leaves out Half of Working Americans

Gore Statement: Gov. Bush asserts that 50 million Americans get no tax relief under Gore’s tax plan. Gore responds: “That’s not right…And that 50 million figure, again, the newspapers I said – you said forget the journalists, but they are – the keepers of the scorecard and whether or not you are using facts that aren’t right, and that fact is just not right.”

Fact: “Mr. Gore’s plan has an income ceiling and pivots on certain conditions, about 50 percent of taxpayers – about 50 million people – would not see their taxes lowered.” (Frank Bruni, “Bush Says Rival’s Tax-Cut Plan Fails Middle Class,” The New York Times, August 2, 2000)

Fact: “In fact, more than 50 million taxpayers fail tests and thus more than half of the current 94 million taxpayers do not qualify for Mr. Gore’s tax cuts. If the devil is in the details, Mr. Gore’s tax proposals were crafted with a pitchfork.” (editorial, “Truth on Tax Cuts,” The Wall Street Journal, September 5, 2000)

The Death Tax

Gore Statement: “I’m for a massive reform of the estate tax or the death tax. And under the plan that I’ve proposed, 80 percent of all family farms will be completely exempt from the estate tax and the vast majority of all family businesses would be completely exempt and all of the others would have sharply reduced.”

Fact: “As for estate tax relief, the Gore plan is so complicated and restrictive that less than 1% of current heirs would qualify. Essentially, the estate has to qualify as a small business in which the decedent has to have ‘materially participated’ in the business in five out of eight years preceding death, and the beneficiary must ‘materially participate’ in the business five out of eight years following the owner’s death for the next 10 years or the IRS could demand tax payment.” (“Truth on Tax Cuts,” The Wall Street Journal, September 5, 2000)