The Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency, said Trump, would be kaput — or at least drastically reduced — in a Trump administration. “We have various other things,” he continued. “If you look at the IRS, if you look at every single agency, we can cut it down, and I mean really cut it down and save. The waste, fraud, and abuse is massive.”The moderator wasn’t buying. “Please put up full screen number four,” Wallace instructed his producers. “The Education Department, you talk about cutting, the total budget for the education department is $78 billion. And that includes Pell grants for low-income students and aid to states for special education. I assume you wouldn’t cut those things. The entire budget for the EPA, the Environmental Protection Agency, $8 billion….The deficit this year is $544 billion. That’s more than a half trillion dollars. Your numbers don’t add up, sir.”Busted, Trump limped into another talking point: “Let me explain something. Because of the fact that the pharmaceutical companies — because of the fact that the pharmaceutical companies are not mandated to bid properly, they have hundreds of billions of dollars in waste.” Then this exchange took place:TRUMP: Take a look — excuse me. You are talking about hundreds of billions of dollars…WALLACE: No, you are not.TRUMP: … if we went out to the proper bid. Of course you are.WALLACE: No, you’re not, sir. Let’s put up full screen number 2.Let’s indeed put up full screen number 2! Full Screen number 2, it has to be noted, drew applause from the audience at the very moment that Wallace mentioned it. It broke down a couple of key facts, as Wallace narrated: “You say that Medicare could save $300 billion a year negotiating lower drug prices. But Medicare total only spends $78 billion a year on drugs. Sir, that’s the facts.”Trump had trouble recovering. Here’s how his effort at damage control played out:TRUMP: I’m saying saving through negotiation throughout the economy, you will save $300 billion a year.WALLACE: But that doesn’t really cut the federal deficit.TRUMP: And that’s a huge — of course it is. We are going to buy things for less money. Of course it is. That works out…WALLACE: That’s the only money that we buy — the only drugs that we pay for is through Medicare.TRUMP: I’m not only talking about drugs, I’m talking about other things. We will save $300 billion a year if we properly negotiate. We don’t do that. We don’t negotiate. We don’t negotiate anything.
September 9, 2016 at 5:48 PM EDT