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Doctor’s Orders?

Conservative politicians have claimed that the stimulus bill requires that doctors follow government orders on what medical treatments can and can’t be prescribed. But the bill doesn’t say that. Rep. Tom Price of Georgia says the measure creates “a national health care rationing board.” Not true. What it creates is …

Stimulus Bill Bravado

In recent weeks, in his pitches to Congress and the public on the need to pass the economic stimulus bill, Obama has made several claims about what it would do. (Republicans, too, have made stimulus boasts of their own.) But these pronouncements are not a sure thing. Obama repeatedly said …

Let Election 2010 Begin

Believe it or not, ads for the midterm elections are on the air already. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced radio ads this week that attack 28 House Republicans for voting against such how-could-they-possibly-oppose-them measures as “tax breaks … for American workers” and creating and saving “over 390,000 New York jobs.” But, as we pointed out today on our main site, these ads don’t tell the whole story.
Most of the radio spots refer to votes against the massive stimulus bill,

Obama’s Speech and Those Frivolous Earmarks

President Obama spoke to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, and we caught several factual errors and misstatements in his remarks. See our full story on FactCheck.org for all the details. Here’s just one item we found:
Obama exaggerated a bit in describing the Children’s Health Insurance Program that was recently reauthorized by Congress:

Obama: When it was days old, this Congress passed a law to provide and protect health insurance for 11 million American children whose parents work full time.

Highlighting Health Care

It has started. A new TV spot is running nationally saying that “fixing health care” is “something that we must do.” It is the first ad in what we expect will be a massive barrage of public relations claims on all sides of the coming debate over President-elect Obama’s …

2008 Voter Turnout

Q: Is it true that 36 percent to 37 percent of eligible voters failed to vote in the recent presidential election?
A:Actually, the number is slightly higher than that: 38.4 percent of eligible voters didn’t cast a ballot for president in 2008. Even more — 39.9 percent — didn’t vote in 2006.

Automakers and Charity

Q: Is it true that the Big Three American automakers made charitable contributions after 9/11, while foreign companies, by and large, did nothing?
A: Actually, foreign car companies gave lots of money, too, despite what an old chain e-mail claims.

Health Care Bill Bankruptcies

Q: What is the percentage of total personal bankruptcies caused by health care bills?
A: A Harvard study published in 2005 found that about half of those who filed for bankruptcy said health care expenses, illness or related job-loss led them to do so. Twenty-seven percent cited uncovered medical bills specifically, and 2 percent said they had mortgaged their home to pay what they owed.

You Ask, We Answer

That’s the idea behind our Ask FactCheck feature on themain site.
This week, we looked into a suspicious quote allegedly from President-elect Barack Obama, speaking about urgent gun policy changes. The reader who sent it to us wasn’t convinced it was legitimate, and our reporting showed it was almost certainly a fabrication. The quote claims Obama told a "VPC Fund Raiser" in 2007 that "[i]n the first year, I intend to work with Congress on a national no carry law,

Long Term Debt Forecasts

Q: What’s a good source for the U.S.A.’s long-term debt, annual revenues and expeditures, and long-term deficit forecasts?

A: The Congressional Budget Office publishes data on the federal government’s budget – that’s revenues and expenditures, deficits and debt. The Treasury Dept. is the best source for daily debt figures.