A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Stimulus Bill

Q: What will the stimulus bill cost per family?
A: The added federal debt comes to about $10,000 per family. A Republican senator who used a figure 10 times higher than that is wrong.

Campaign 2010 Begins

Here we go again. The first round of attack ads in the 2010 midterm elections was announced this week by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Its new radio spots accuse 28 Republican House members variously of voting against tax breaks for working people, voting against money for schools, voting against …

Obama’s Inaugural Bobble

President Barack Obama made one factual error in his first speech in office when he said, immediately after being sworn in:

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath.

It is true that Obama is counted as the 44th president, but he’s only the 43rd person to take the oath. Grover Cleveland is counted as both the 22nd and the 24th president.
Cleveland took the oath the first time in 1885, served four years and then was defeated by Benjamin Harrison in 1888.

Sliming Pelosi

Pelosi has taken her place with Obama and Palin as a favorite target of false claims in chain e-mails, judging by the examples our readers send us. Here’s the truth about some of the bunk being thrown at her by anonymous Internet rumormongers. Her husband does not own a …

EPA Tax on Cows and Pigs?

Q: Is the EPA considering a tax on cows and pigs?
A: No. The farm lobby warned that EPA “could” push for such a tax, but EPA never proposed any such thing and says it lacks authority to impose one anyway.

Year-end Whoppers


We've often said that the spin never stops in Washington. And the weeks since Nov. 4 offer further evidence of that.
Consider some of the bogus claims we've debunked just since Election Day:

It's not true that unionized auto workers at Detroit's Big Three make more than $70 an hour, as claimed by some opponents of federal aid.
And no, 3 million workers won't be tossed out of work if aid is not forthcoming,

Loss of Automaker Jobs?

Q: Would 3 million jobs be lost if U.S. automakers go under?

A: The 3-million-jobs figure is based on doomsday assumptions that are unlikely to materialize. Independent economists put the job loss in the hundreds of thousands if GM and Chrysler go under. Ford has said it can survive on its own for now.

Our Disinformed Electorate

We saw more aggressive fact-checking by journalists in this election than ever before. Unfortunately, as a post-election Annenberg Public Policy Center poll confirms, millions of voters were bamboozled anyway.

More than half of U.S. adults (52 percent) said the claim that Sen. Barack Obama’s tax plan would raise taxes on most small businesses is truthful, when in fact only a small percentage would see any increase.

More than two in five (42.3 percent) found truth in the claim that Sen.

IRAs, 401(k)s and You

Q: Are congressional Democrats talking about confiscating IRA and 401(k) investment accounts?
A: No. There’s no plan to seize these accounts. One House witness at a committee hearing proposed to allow some people to trade their old accounts for a new type that would be less risky.

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