A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Abortions: Comparing Catholic and Protestant Women

Q: Do Catholic women get abortions more frequently than Protestant women?
A: Catholics are slightly more likely to get an abortion than Protestants, according to a 2000-2001 survey.

Congressional Pensions

Q: Does a United States senator receive his full pay upon retiring?
A: No. A member of Congress can’t receive more than 80 percent of his or her final salary upon retirement, and the average is much less.

The Obamas’ Chicago Home

Q: Does Obama have a real estate problem?
A: A political patron from whom he bought a strip of land is under federal indictment, but there’s no evidence Obama did anything improper.

Presidents Who Owned Slaves

Q: Who was the last U.S. president to own slaves?
A: Zachary Taylor owned slaves while in office. U.S. Grant owned a slave he freed in 1859, long before becoming president.

Defining Enemy Combatant

Q: What is an enemy combatant?
A: “Enemy combatant” is shorthand for people who are fighting unlawfully. But no one is quite sure exactly what that means.

Bush: The Constitution a ‘Goddamned Piece of Paper’?

Q: Did President Bush call the Constitution a “goddamned piece of paper”?
A: Extremely unlikely. The Web site that reported those words has a history of quoting phony sources and retracting bogus stories.

The Right to Lobby

Q: Are lobbyists justified in a democracy?
A: The Constitution guarantees the right to petition government.