In episode 12 of FactCheck Radio, we look at false and misleading claims made on the Sunday talk shows about Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Plus, we examine whether immigration — both legal and illegal — hurts American workers.
Q: Will Muslim Americans be exempt from the mandate to have health insurance?
A: The Muslim faith does not forbid purchasing health insurance, and no Muslim group has ever been considered exempt under the definitions used in the health care law.
This week, readers sent us comments about immigration and … well, practically nothing else. Our story seemed to hit a nerve.
In the FactCheck Mailbag, we feature some of the e-mail we receive. Readers can send comments to email@example.com. Letters may be edited for length.
Linda McMahon’s U.S. Senate campaign recently used the social networking site Twitter to misrepresent former Rep. Robert Simmons’ position on tax credits for businesses and the dividend tax. McMahon and Simmons are battling in Connecticut to become the GOP nominee for Chris Dodd’s Senate seat.
Shawn McCoy, deputy communications director for the McMahon campaign, tweeted the following on May 11:
@RobSimmons supports hiking the dividends tax and opposes biz tax credits. No wonder CT lost 15,000 jobs while he was biz advocate
But Simmons does support giving tax credits to businesses and extending the Bush tax cuts including the dividend tax,
The Sunday talk shows contained ample misinformation this week. Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan was the subject of bogus claims coming from two lawmakers, and a Democratic candidate for Senate fudged the facts about his military record. Also, a Republican former House speaker played loose with the facts, while accusing the president and his party of "anti-religious bias."
Kagan: No Lawbreaker
On ABC’s "This Week," Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions falsely accused Supreme Court nominee Kagan of "violating the law."
Contrary to persistent Internet rumors — which we debunked in "Zero Pay Raise for Congress, Too" on Sept. 25, 2009, and again in "Retribution Fabrication" on Jan. 8 — there was no pay raise for members of Congress this year. Congress voted over a year ago to deny itself the automatic increase that would have gone into effect in January.
And now there will be no pay raise for House or Senate members next year, either.
In the final days of a hotly contested Senate Democratic primary in Arkansas, the Service Employees International Union is running a misleading attack ad against Sen. Blanche Lincoln.
In the ad, titled “Nancy,” an Arkansas resident by the name of Nancy Shaw talks about her daughter, who suffers from Down syndrome. Shaw says she is upset that Lincoln “voted to allow health insurance companies to deny coverage to people with preexisting conditions.” Shaw speculates that Lincoln “sided with the big insurance companies because they could afford big campaign contributions.”
In episode 11 of FactCheck Radio, we look at false and misleading ads in two congressional races: a special election in Pennsylvania’s 12th district, and the Democratic Senate primary in Arkansas. Both elections are May 18.
Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln says she saved the jobs of tire plant employees in Arkansas. But a labor union, which backs Lincoln’s challenger, Bill Halter, says she didn’t. We give viewers the scoop on the truth behind these competing claims.
Q: Does an illegal immigrant in Florida get $1,500 a month for each of her eight children?
A: No. Illegal immigrants don’t qualify for welfare or food stamps. A chain e-mail from a "disabled Vietnam vet" is full of misinformation.