A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

FactCheck Mailbag, Week of Oct. 2-8

This week, readers sent us comments about our analysis of the first presidential debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney.
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.

Talking Tax Breaks for Offshoring

Q: Do companies get a tax break for shipping U.S. jobs overseas?
A: Not specifically for that reason. But companies can deduct business expenses, including the cost of moving a job to another state or even out of the country.

NRCC Claims Democrat Will End Medicare

The National Republican Congressional Committee misleads in a TV ad that claims a Democratic candidate for Congress supports “eliminating Medicare entirely.”
David Gill, who is running for a House seat in Illinois, supports a universal health care plan that would cover all Americans — ending the need for a stand-alone Medicare program. The federal government would still provide coverage to seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries under the proposal.
The NRCC’s ad contains three more claims that fail to tell the whole story or are misleading.

The ‘Facts’ According to Obama and Romney Ads

In dueling ads, the Obama and Romney campaigns claim the factual high ground on deficits and taxes while, ironically, distorting the facts.

An Obama ad uses a truncated quote that makes NBC’s Andrea Mitchell seem to contradict Romney’s statement that his tax plan doesn’t amount to a $5 trillion cut. In fact, she went on to say Romney “said again tonight that his plan would be paid for.”
A Romney ad claims Obama is “adding almost as much debt as all 43 previous presidents combined.”

Health Care Falsehoods on the Stump

On Connecticut Public Broadcasting, Managing Editor Lori Robertson talks about the off-base health care claims in President Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s stump speeches. Obama misleads on Romney’s Medicare plan, and Romney uses a false statistic about insurance premium increases.
For more on the candidates’ stump speeches, see “Romney’s Stump Speech” (Sept. 20) and “Obama’s Stump Speech” (Sept. 19).

Obama’s Numbers

For more than a year, we’ve been pointing out on a regular basis how President Obama, his allies and his critics all misuse or even fabricate statistics to give voters a skewed picture of reality. This time we’ll just offer the accurate numbers. Here — in a graphic …

Romney’s Clean Energy Whoppers

Mitt Romney made numerous bogus claims in the Oct. 3 debate about the $90 billion in grants, guaranteed loans and tax breaks for energy projects in the stimulus bill:

Romney falsely claimed “about half” of the clean-energy companies that received U.S.-backed loans “have gone out of business.” But 26 companies received loan guarantees under a loan program cited by Romney, and three of those have filed for bankruptcy. The three firms were approved for about 6 percent of the loan guarantees.

Fact-Checking the Presidential Debate

FactCheck.org Director Brooks Jackson talks to WCBS radio about the false and misleading claims made by President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in their first presidential debate. The candidates got the facts wrong on taxes, deficits, jobs and more.
For our full article on the debate claims, see “Dubious Denver Debate Declarations.”

Dubious Denver Debate Declarations

We found exaggerations and false claims flying thick and fast during the first debate between President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney. Obama accused Romney of proposing a $5 trillion tax cut. Not true. Romney proposes to offset his rate cuts …