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Attacks Against Gingrich: How Accurate?

Summary
A pro-Romney group is savaging Newt Gingrich with TV ads and mailers to Iowa Republicans. Gingrich dismisses the attacks as “lies.” We find that some of the claims from Restore Our Future are indeed distorted, false or misleading. But several are also right on target.

A TV spot makes a distorted claim that Gingrich co-sponsored a bill containing money for a United Nations program “supporting China’s brutal one-child policy.” The truth is that bill specifically prohibited the use of funds for “involuntary sterilization or abortion,” or “the coercion of any person to accept family planning services.” The funding in question was a small part of a much larger bill which died before ever coming up for a vote.

A Historian’s Perspective on Gingrich & Lincoln

Newt Gingrich wrongly claimed the Dred Scott decision “ruled that slavery extended to the whole country.” It did not. The ruling stated that Congress had no authority to ban slavery in new territories, but it stopped short of applying the ruling to all states. Gingrich also claimed that President Lincoln “explicitly instructed his administration to not enforce Dred Scott.” But the research historian at the Lincoln presidential library knows of no such directive or any reason to issue one.

The Whoppers of 2011

Despite what you may have heard in 2011: The new health care law won’t cost many jobs (and they’ll be poorly paying jobs at that). Republicans aren’t proposing to “end” Medicare (and Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden has signed onto a modified version …

Bachmann Wrong on Social Security, Jobs, Debt

Michele Bachmann argued that “my facts are accurate” at the Dec. 15 debate, but a few days later, she got several facts wrong. On “Meet the Press” the presidential candidate had a couple of exchanges with host David Gregory over the validity of her statements on Social Security and the debt. Among the inaccuracies:

Bachmann said she didn’t support the payroll tax cut because “it denied $111 billion to the Social Security trust fund”and “put senior citizens at risk.”

White House Displays ‘Washington Monument Syndrome’

The White House misleadingly suggests that the Republicans’ plan to pay for a payroll tax cut would result in “forcing cuts to things like education and medical research.” The bill passed by House Republicans mentions no such cuts. And while the bill may or may not require cuts to discretionary spending, there’s no reason those cuts would have to come from popular programs like education or medical research.
The White House’s nearly six-minute “white board” video,

The Final Iowa Debate

The final Republican presidential debate in advance of the Jan. 3 first-in-the-nation Iowa party caucuses produced a few claims we found worthy of quibbling over. Gingrich challenged Bachmann’s factual accuracy regarding the former speaker’s record on abortion — but we found Bachmann was mostly correct. On the other hand, Bachmann used an inflated jobs figure when she criticized Obama’s decision to delay approval of a Canadian oil pipeline through the U.S.
Seven Republican presidential candidates debated Dec.

FactCheck Mailbag, Week of Dec. 6-12

This week, readers sent us comments about the headlines of our articles.
In the FactCheck Mailbag, we feature some of the email we receive. Readers can send comments to editor@factcheck.org. Letters may be edited for length.