A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

‘Dishonorable’

Summary
A McCain-Palin ad calls Obama "dishonorable," while distorting his words and votes on troop funding.

It accuses him of saying "our troops in Afghanistan" are just bombing villages and killing civilians. What Obama said, in context, was a criticism of U.S. military strategy, and not of American troops.
It accuses Obama and "Congressional liberals" of voting repeatedly to cut off funding for troops, "increasing the risk on their lives." In fact, the votes were for bringing the troops home,

Killing Afghan Civilians?

Obama did say that troops in Afghanistan were killing civilians, a claim that Palin calls “untrue.” Here’s the whole quote, from a campaign stop in New Hampshire:

Obama, August 2007: We’ve got to get the job done there and that requires us to have enough troops so that we’re not just air-raiding villages and killing civilians, which is causing enormous problems there.

The Associated Press fact-checked this one, and found that in fact U.S troops were killing more civilians at the time than insurgents: “As of Aug.

The Whoppers of 2008

Summary
Normally we post a “Whoppers” compilation the week before Election Day. This time we’ve already seen such a large number of twisted facts, misleading claims and outright falsehoods that we are doing that now.
It’s not just Sarah Palin’s claim about killing the bridge project that she had supported until it became a national laughingstock and Congress turned against it. That’s just the whopper that got the attention of many news organizations earlier this month.

FactChecking Obama

Summary
We checked the accuracy of Obama’s speech accepting the Democratic nomination, and noted the following:

Obama said he could “pay for every dime” of his spending and tax cut proposals “by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens.” That’s wrong – his proposed tax increases on upper-income individuals are key components of paying for his program, as well. And his plan, like McCain’s, would leave the U.S. facing big budget deficits, according to independent experts.

Obama Snubbing Troops? False.

 Q: Did Obama snub U.S. troops in Afghanistan to shoot baskets for publicity pictures?
A: This is another viral e-mail falsehood. The author now says it’s not true; the Army says it’s not true; and video and photos show Obama shaking hands with troops and eating breakfast with them as well.

Obama and European Affairs Subcommittee

Q: Does Obama chair a Senate subcommittee that oversees the war in Afghanistan?
A: He chairs the Senate’s Subcommittee on European Affairs, which has some oversight in Afghanistan through NATO.

Misstatement of the Union

The President burnishes the State of the Union through selective facts and strategic omissions.

A Tortured History

President Bush has declared repeatedly, “we do not torture.” But claims of prisoner abuse continue to surface, Amnesty International has declared the US detention center in Cuba to be “a gulag,” and the administration has yet to deny a news report that it holds scores of suspects in secret CIA prisons overseas.