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Fact Checking the GOP Convention Speeches

Friday, 14 Sep 2012 | 8:59 AM ET
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney takes the stage to deliver his nomination acceptance speech.
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Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney takes the stage to deliver his nomination acceptance speech.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, his running mate Paul Ryan and NJ Gov. Chris Christie each laid out the GOP’s vision for America at the Republican National Convention in August.

But how accurate were their speeches? We parsed the speeches and did a little fact-checking.

Gov. Chris Christie:

The blunt governor of New Jersey delivered a forceful keynote address that spent relatively little time praising Romney. Instead, he spent more time focusing on the message that America needs politicians that have the guts to tell difficult truths. (Read More: Ann Romney Targets Women, Outmuscles Christie's Punch.)

Fact Checking Christie's Speech
CNBC's Eamon Javers fact-checks Chris Christie's speech last night. Meanwhile James Pethokoukis, American Enterprise Institute, offers insight on Christie's speech and whether Mitt Romney can connect with America.

But how on the mark was Christie’s speech when it came to the facts?

When talking about how bad things were when he took office in 2010, the governor said, “When I came into office, I could continue on the same path that led to wealth and jobs and people leaving our state. Or I could do the job that people elected me to do, to do the big things.”

CNBC Investigations Inc.
CNBC Investigations Inc.

However, a look at New Jersey’s personal income statistics shows the state’s personal income was actually going up in the years that Christie took over.

In 2009, the per capita personal income was $49,549, in 2010 it was $51,139 and in 2011 it was $53,181.

Paul Ryan:

When Paul Ryan accepted the vice presidential nomination in a rousing and well-received speech, he also made a couple of statements that came under scrutiny.

(Read More: Ryan's Warning - 'We Don't Have Much Time'.)

For one, Ryan took aim at President Barack Obama for ignoring the findings of the debt commission led by Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles.

Fact-Checking Paul Ryan
CNBC's Eamon Javers reports Paul Ryan's comments on the Simpson-Bowles commission in his speech last night failed to mention that he sat on the commission, and in the end, voted against implementing the findings detailed in the report.

“He created a new bi-partisan debt commission. He thanked them, sent them on their way and then did exactly nothing,” he told the crowd.

However, what Ryan didn’t mention was that he sat on the Simpson-Bowles commission himself and voted against implementing the findings in the report.

Mitt Romney:

Javers Fact Checks Mitt Romney
CNBC's Eamon Javers takes a moment to look at the facts contained in Mitt Romney's speech from the Republican National Convention last night.

When Mitt Romney accepted the GOP presidential nomination on the final night of the RNC, among the things he talked about was taxes.

“Let me make this very clear, unlike President Obama I will not raise taxes on the middle class of America,” he said.

But at least one analysis, by the Tax Policy Center, found that Romney’s plans would likely lead to an effective tax increase of $500 per household for those earning less than $200,000.

-By CNBC's Eamon Javers
@eamonjavers

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