A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Obama’s Supporters Take to the Small Screen

The ink is still drying on the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, and the government’s corresponding Web site for tracking its progress is still being programmed. But Americans United for Change, a liberal group, already is airing an ad that lauds President Obama for its passage and extols its benefits.

FactCheck.org has reviewed dubious ads from Americans United for Change before, when the group was attacking then-President Bush and other Republicans. This ad repeats the Obama claim that the stimulus will keep or save 3.5 million jobs.

Hamas Refugee Assistance

Q: Did Obama pay for Hamas-affiliated terrorists to emigrate to the United States?
A: This claim is false. The president’s memorandum to the State Department would pay for refugee assistance in Gaza, not for transporting anyone to the U.S.

The ‘Class Act’ E-mail

Q: Was Bush’s exit from office a “Class Act” compared with Clinton’s?
A: A widely forwarded e-mail contains some false and exaggerated claims, along with some truths. It also contains made-up headlines about Obama.

Special Election Season Begins

Since President Obama plucked at least three advisers and cabinet members from elected positions, and some of those positions were then filled by other elected officials, we have a spate of special elections to watch as these empty posts are filled. Of particular note is the 20th House district in New York that was vacated when Kirsten Gillibrand was appointed to replace Hillary Clinton as senator. The district had traditionally trended Republican before Gillibrand’s win in 2006,

A Cool Reaction to Warming Trend

Americans For Prosperity, a conservative group, has found a unique way to attack Democrats for the recently passed American Recovery and Reinvestment Act: global warming alarmism.
The group notes that the stimulus package calls for “spending billions of dollars” for “green energy.” That much is certainly true. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the bill did include $16.8 billion for energy efficiency and renewable energy, and as we’ve previously discussed there was an additional $11 billion for a so-called smart grid.

Stimulus Bill

Q: What will the stimulus bill cost per family?
A: The added federal debt comes to about $10,000 per family. A Republican senator who used a figure 10 times higher than that is wrong.

Who is Linda Panetta?

Q: Is Leon Panetta’s daughter a "radical anti-American" who posed with Venezuela’s Chavez?
A: Actually, President Obama’s nominee to head the CIA doesn’t even have a daughter. The woman pictured in a false viral e-mail message is a Philadelphia-based photographer who says she’s never met Leon Panetta.

Stimulus Bill Bravado

In recent weeks, in his pitches to Congress and the public on the need to pass the economic stimulus bill, Obama has made several claims about what it would do. (Republicans, too, have made stimulus boasts of their own.) But these pronouncements are not a sure thing. Obama repeatedly said …

Freedom of Choice Act

Q:What are the facts on the Freedom of Choice Act?
A:Some claims about this proposal’s impact are unfounded; others contain some truth. But the bill’s vague wording makes it hard to pin down what it actually would or wouldn’t do.

On Logical Fallacies

We’re always pleased when our readers write to us with questions or comments that really make us think. Here, for example, is reader K.S., who writes:
Perhaps it was intended facetiously, if so I apologize for this “correction.” However, in your piece on ACORN you concluded with the following statement, “We’re accustomed to seeing logical fallacies in political arguments. But working two of them into a single argument is unusually bad logic.”
All fallacies are errors in logic,