A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Obama Not Trying to Curb Military Early Voting

Mitt Romney wrongly suggests the Obama campaign is trying to “undermine” the voting rights of military members through a lawsuit filed in Ohio. The suit seeks to block state legislation that limited early voting times for nonmilitary members; it doesn’t seek to impose restrictions on service members.
In an Aug. 4 Facebook posting, Romney called the lawsuit an “outrage,” and said that “if I’m entrusted to be the commander-in-chief, I’ll work to protect the voting rights of our military,

Romney’s Impossible Tax Promise

Tax experts — including one who supports Romney’s plan — say the Republican presidential candidate’s promise to cut individual income tax rates without either favoring the wealthy or losing revenue isn’t mathematically possible. That’s the conclusion of the Tax Policy Center in a report the Romney campaign attacked …

Does Romney Pay a Lower Rate in Taxes Than You?

A new ad from the Obama campaign claims that Mitt Romney “paid only 14 percent in taxes—probably less than you.” That depends. Romney paid a federal income tax rate that is higher than the income tax rate paid by 97 percent of tax filers. But if you include a combination of income taxes and payroll taxes — which make up the bulk of federal taxes for most taxpayers — the ad is accurate.
The ad, called “Stretch,”

Spotlight On: Chris Masoner

Chris Masoner went to law school. He’s familiar with the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, which states that federal law “shall be the supreme Law of the Land.”
So, a recent campaign mailer failed to fool him. The flier claimed a proposed amendment to Kansas’ Constitution would have allowed residents “to vote to opt-out of Obama’s new health care law.”
“It’s just not true,” Masoner said.
Masoner, 39, of Lenexa, Kan., sent the campaign mailer and a similar one from the same group to Spin Detectors.

Mailers Mislead on ‘Obamacare’ Opt-Out Amendment

A conservative group misleads Kansas voters in campaign mailers that claim a failed proposal to amend the state’s Constitution would have allowed residents to opt-out of “Obamacare.”
No state law can do that. The U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause explicitly states that federal law is the “supreme Law of the Land.”
The proposed Kansas Health Care Freedom Amendment, like several similar state proposals and laws, declared that no law can compel Kansans to buy health insurance or require them to pay a fine for lacking it.

Romney’s Position on Abortion

On WCBS radio, FactCheck.org Deputy Managing Editor Robert Farley talks about an Obama campaign ad that falsely claims Mitt Romney “backed a bill that outlaws all abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.”
See “Falsifying Romney’s Abortion Stance, Again” for more information about this TV ad.

FactCheck Mailbag, Week of July 24-30

This week, readers sent us comments about President Obama’s “you didn’t build that” quote and Mitt Romney’s claim that many of the weapons belonging to James Holmes were illegal.
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.

Who Pays 75 Percent of Health Care Law’s Taxes?

A Republican talking point falsely claims that the Congressional Budget Office found 75 percent of the federal health care law’s taxes would be paid by those earning less than $120,000 a year. CBO didn’t say that. Instead, it found 76 percent of those paying the mandate penalty would earn under that amount.
For more on this claim, see “Twisting Health Care Taxes,” our July 23 item.

Romney’s ‘Racist’ Reference to Palestinian Culture

Mitt Romney says he “did not speak about the Palestinian culture” at a fundraiser in Israel, where his remarks were denounced by a Palestinian leader as “racist.” It’s true that Romney didn’t directly disparage the Palestinian culture, but he did say “culture makes all the difference” when explaining why Israel’s per-capita gross domestic product is more than double that of neighboring areas managed by the Palestinian Authority. Palestinians say that ignores the effect of Israel’s economic sanctions.