The NYT had an article reporting on how the presidential campaigns plan to make Medicare an issue in Florida as they compete for older voters. At one point it quotes Ed Gillespie, a senior adviser to the Romney campaign:
"The fact is, we’re going to go on offense here. Because the president has raided the Medicare trust fund to the tune of $716 billion to pay for a massive expansion of government known as Obamacare."
It would have been helpful to point out to readers that President Obama did not "raid" the Medicare trust fund. This concept literally has not meaning. The trust fund holds U.S. government bonds that correspond to the surplus it has accumulated over the years. President Obama did not default on these bonds, which means that he has not pulled any money out of the Medicare system.
The claim that President Obama "raided" the trust fund because he has proposed additional health care spending in other areas (including the elimination of the doughnut hole in the Medicare prescription drug benefit) is like claiming that a person's checking account had been raided because the bank lent the money to a small business. This is the way a modern economy works.
Either Mr. Romney's senior advisor is completely clueless about the way the economy works or he is deliberately misrepresenting President Obama's actions. Either case would make an interesting news story.