A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

SEIU Misleads on Lincoln’s Health Vote

In the final days of a hotly contested Senate Democratic primary in Arkansas, the Service Employees International Union is running a misleading attack ad against Sen. Blanche Lincoln.

In the ad, titled “Nancy,” an Arkansas resident by the name of Nancy Shaw talks about her daughter, who suffers from Down syndrome. Shaw says she is upset that Lincoln “voted to allow health insurance companies to deny coverage to people with preexisting conditions.” Shaw speculates that Lincoln “sided with the big insurance companies because they could afford big campaign contributions.”

Critz, Burns Swap False Charges

In the final days of the May 18 special election in Pennsylvania’s 12th congressional district, Democrat Mark Critz and Republican Tim Burns have escalated their attacks on each other in TV ads chock full of false and misleading claims. Critz wrongly accuses Burns of wanting to “privatize Medicare and Social Security.” But …

Benton’s Bogus Viagra Ad

Don Benton, a Republican from Washington state who is running for U.S. Senate against Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, is airing a false and misleading ad that says: "Patty Murray voted to use taxpayer money to give Viagra to sex offenders.” The ad goes on to say, “What if I told you your taxpayer dollars are already doing that?”
It ends by urging viewers to “tell Patty Murray that you’re sick of her reckless spending.”

In a graphic on screen,

Congress Did Not Raise Its Pay, Deny Seniors Increase

Chris Cates, a Republican congressional candidate in Georgia’s May 11 special election, says in a new TV ad that Congress voted to give itself a pay raise, while denying senior citizens on Social Security a cost-of-living increase. He’s wrong on both counts.

In “Fed Up,” an ad that started running May 3, Cates gives a litany of complaints about Congress, including that it has "gold-plated health insurance" (a matter of opinion, but members of Congress receive the same health care plans as federal workers ),

Healthreform.gov’s Positive Spin

A federal government website designed to help Americans understand the new health care law isn’t always helpful — or in some cases even accurate.
Take this question in the Q&A section for “small businesses."

Q: Am I required to offer insurance to my employees?
A: No. There is not a so-called “employer mandate” in the legislation.

That’s true if your definition of "small business" only covers firms with 49 or fewer employees; there’s no requirement that they provide coverage.

Ethics Attack Misses Mark

Ethics increasingly has become an issue in the final weeks of the hotly contested special election in the 12th congressional district in Pennsylvania. Republican candidate Tim Burns has been running a television ad saying Democrat Mark Critz “was investigated …

Mis-Tweets on Twitter

v. To use Twitter to mislead your followers.
For providing false and misleading information, a 30-second TV spot crafted by a seasoned media consultant is still king. But there’s another medium this campaign year that makes …