Friday, April 20, 2018
Business

Next to tax code, is Bible a quick read?

The statement

"There are more words in the IRS code than there are in the Bible."

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, | R-Texas, in a Republican presidential debate

The ruling

During Tuesday's Republican presidential debate in Milwaukee, Ted Cruz compared two volumes — one beloved by many, the other loathed by almost everybody.

"There are more words in the IRS code than there are in the Bible — and — and not a one of them is as good," Cruz said.

Our New Jersey affiliate checked a similar claim on length in 2013, so we'll apply their research to Cruz's claim here.

How long is the tax code?

A 2010 report by the Internal Revenue Service's Taxpayer Advocate Office found that the tax code contained 3.8 million words. That calculation was made by downloading a zipped file of the code, unzipping it and running it through Microsoft Word's word count feature, according to a footnote in the report. A 2012 version of the report puts the number of words in the code at "about 4 million."

We also reached out to CCH, the Riverwoods, Ill., publisher of the two-volume 2013 winter version of the tax code and was told the best estimate of word length was 4 million.

That was two years ago, but we think it's a safe bet that the length of the tax code has only increased since then, not decreased.

How long is the Bible?

Dennis Olson, the Charles T. Haley professor of Old Testament theology at the Princeton Theological Seminary, told PolitiFact New Jersey that a fair approximation of the Bible's length is 800,000 words for the Old and New testaments combined.

"The King James Version would be 823,156 while the more recent New Revised Standard Version would be 774,746 words," Olson said.

Hellen Mardaga, an assistant professor of New Testament at Catholic University in Washington, agreed that estimates that put the Bible at 800,000 words were credible.

Put it all together and the tax code is roughly five times as long as the Bible. So Cruz is correct.

We rate his claim True.

Read more rulings at PolitiFact.com.

Comments
Some people are paying for cuddles. And it’s not what you might think.

Some people are paying for cuddles. And it’s not what you might think.

When Samantha Hess’s marriage ended five years ago, she felt she was lacking a basic human need: Physical touch. As a woman in her late 20s living in Portland, Oregon, she found plenty of men interested in dating, but sexual contact was not what she ...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Judge: Foreclosure defense lawyer Mark Stopa violated numerous rules of conduct

Judge: Foreclosure defense lawyer Mark Stopa violated numerous rules of conduct

Tampa Bay foreclosure defense lawyer Mark Stopa has violated numerous rules of professional conduct and caused two clients to nearly lose their homes because he failed to tell them about settlement offers from their banks. Those were among the prelim...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Goodwill to open second store in greater Brandon

Goodwill to open second store in greater Brandon

Times staffThe greater Brandon area will celebrate the grand opening of its second Goodwill store beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday (April 28) at 1407 U.S. 301. The new store will add another 12,000 square feet to the complex, which includes a 200,000-...
Published: 04/20/18
Updated: 04/21/18
Regulators allow major solar company to lease home equipment

Regulators allow major solar company to lease home equipment

State regulators Friday determined that one of the country’s largest residential solar companies, San Francisco-based Sunrun, is allowed to lease solar energy equipment for homes in Florida. The decision, solar energy advocates say, could open the do...
Published: 04/20/18
Florida unemployment at 3.9 percent for sixth straight month

Florida unemployment at 3.9 percent for sixth straight month

For the sixth month running, Florida’s unemployment rate held at a nearly 11-year low of 3.9 percent in March as steady job gains continued. While many factors kept Florida’s economy chugging along, three industries stand out for leading year-over-ye...
Published: 04/20/18
Owners say new house is a disaster; developer accuses them of ‘online terrorism’

Owners say new house is a disaster; developer accuses them of ‘online terrorism’

ST. PETERSBURG --- Stretched across the front of Tim and Hyun Kims’ two-year-old house is a big banner with the name of a developer and the words: "I have to fix my new house."Some of what needs fixing is instantly apparent. The front steps are too ...
Published: 04/20/18
Florida hits a milestone: More than 100,000 people are registered to use medical marijuana here

Florida hits a milestone: More than 100,000 people are registered to use medical marijuana here

Florida has hit a milestone of sorts as it slowly moves toward wider availability of medical marijuana.The number of patients in the state who are registered to use the substance has surpassed 100,000 for the first time, according to Florida Departme...
Published: 04/20/18
Q&A: Walmart leader chats about Florida stores, and the chain’s latest retail strategy

Q&A: Walmart leader chats about Florida stores, and the chain’s latest retail strategy

The Tampa Bay Times recently sat down with Walmart director of corporate communications Phillip Keene to chat about the retail giant’s latest retail strategies and how the company is winning over customers in a competitive market.Already, two of the ...
Published: 04/20/18
SunTrust warns 1.5 million clients of potential data breach

SunTrust warns 1.5 million clients of potential data breach

Associated PressNEW YORK — SunTrust Banks Inc. says accounts for 1.5 million clients could be compromised following a potential data breach. The Atlanta bank says that it became aware of the potential theft by a former employee and that the investiga...
Published: 04/20/18
Spring break, hurricane relief boosted Tampa Bay hotels in March

Spring break, hurricane relief boosted Tampa Bay hotels in March

The Tampa Bay area’s hotel occupancy rate rose to 87.5 percent in March, the highest level in three years. The rise was fueled by spring break vacationers as well as insurance adjusters and hurricane cleanup crews flooding the state to restore it aft...
Published: 04/20/18