A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Sunday Replay

This weekend, the Sunday talkfests were dominated by predictions of how the makeup of the Senate and House might change after Tuesday’s elections. Halloween or not, clairvoyance isn’t a skill set we’ve mastered. We’re happy to wait for the actual results.
Meanwhile, we highlight a few misleading, non-predictive comments from Sunday:
Palin’s ‘Corrupt Bastards’
On "Fox News Sunday," former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin accused "corrupt bastards" in the media of conspiring with Sen. Lisa Murkowski to sabotage the campaign of her GOP Senate rival,

Tax Cuts, Medicare and Florida Democrats

In episode 23 of FactCheck Radio, we debunk a Republican talking point on the Bush tax cuts being spread by Sarah Palin and former Sen. Fred Thompson. Plus, we examine actor Andy Griffith’s misleading ad for Medicare, and false charges in the Democratic Senate primary in Florida.

For more on the stories discussed in this episode, see:
Sunday Replay   Aug. 2
Thompson Wrong on Tax Cuts, Too  Aug. 5
Mayberry Misleads on Medicare  July 31
Democrat-on-Democrat TV Attacks in Florida 

Thompson Wrong on Tax Cuts, Too

First, it was Sarah Palin. Now, it’s former Sen. Fred Thompson. They’re both touting a highly misleading Republican talking point on the expiration of the Bush tax cuts.
Thompson, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008, warns in a new ad sponsored by the conservative League of American Voters: "Folks, America’s economy is struggling and Congress is about to make it a whole lot worse." He’s talking about the "massive automatic tax increase at the end of this year, when the Bush tax cuts expire,"

Dems Face YouTube Interrogators

The Democratic presidential hopefuls faced CNN host Anderson Cooper and a handful of citizens who submitted questions in video format. We found a few misstatements.

Counter-rotating Tax Spin

Summary
The Democrats’ proposed 2008 budget is being spun by both sides. Democrats claim it will not raise taxes by even a penny, while Republicans say it will impose the largest or second-largest tax increase in history.
Obviously, the budget can’t be the largest tax increase in history and zero tax increase simultaneously. So which is it? The answer depends on a couple of questions: What constitutes an increase? And an increase compared with what?

An Avalanche of Misinformation

With election day approaching the tempo of ads is increasing, but not the level of factual accuracy. Both sides are making false or misleading claims in their ads.

Anti-Kerry Ad Highlights Changes On Welfare, Death Penalty

A Club for Growth PAC TV ad released July 26 accurately cites Kerry’s changing positions over the years on welfare reform, the death penalty for terrorists, and gasoline taxes. But it also falsely implies that he’s voted to raise taxes 350 times, a claim we’ve de-bunked before.