A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Three Democratic Debate Lowlights


In this week’s collaboration with FactCheck.org, Jake Tapper of CNN’s “State of the Union” tackles three claims from the first Democratic debate.

First up is the claim from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that in a 2012 statement she merely said she “hoped” the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal would be the “gold standard.” At the time, though, Clinton — who now says she opposes the deal — said it “sets” the gold standard.

Next is a claim from Sen. Bernie Sanders, who said the U.S. “should not be the country that has the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country.” As Tapper points out, a report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development ranks the U.S. seventh in relative childhood poverty.

And last is the claim from former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley that “70 percent of us are earning the same, or less than we were 12 years ago.” Not true. Average weekly earnings for rank-and-file workers are up 5.8 percent over the past 12 years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

You can read more about these claims and others in our story “FactChecking the Democratic Debate.”