A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Ryan’s Budget Spin

Rep. Paul Ryan spreads some false and misleading information in a series of “Setting The Record Straight” web posts, in which he criticizes the president’s proposed budget and promotes …

Sunday Replay

Pity the poor politicians and spinmeisters who had to don suits in the middle of a long weekend and populate the talk shows. They were up to their usual tricks, though: One Republican operative wrongly implied a crime by the White House; several guests talked about the debt or deficit in ways that were deceptive; and a House incumbent made the jobs picture under President Obama sound better than it is in reality.
Obama ‘Enemies List’

Another Black Hole

A secretive, Republican-leaning group has spent an estimated $3 million on a TV ad making the false claim that government spending is "not creating jobs."

The ad first appeared Sept. 7 and was still running nearly a month later. The ad shows a man in a business suit digging an ever-deeper hole — a visual metaphor for the nation’s ever-expanding debt. It could also be a metaphor for Public Notice, the sponsor of the ad and yet another group whose finances are also something of a black hole.

Sunday Replay

Sunday morning’s talkathons featured a few misstatements in a debate between Kentucky’s Senate contenders, and some confusion about debts and deficits.   
 Kentucky Senate Candidates Debate
"Fox News Sunday" hosted a debate between Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul, a Republican, and his Democratic opponent, Jack Conway. 
Paul’s statements about the economic and citizenship status of the country’s uninsured population were false:

Paul: Well, there are two aspects to health care problems. One’s the expense and one’s access.

Sunday Replay

On this week’s Sunday talk shows, we found false claims on the debt, discretionary spending, foreign-funded attack ads and polling data.
Wrong on Debt
On ABC’s "This Week," Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell made a false claim about the federal debt — a claim that we debunked in January, when Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, a Republican, made a similar statement. The debt situation has worsened since then, but not enough to make this GOP talking point true.

Obama’s State of the Union Address

President Obama peppered his State of the Union address to Congress and the nation with facts, which were mostly right but sometimes cherry-picked, strained or otherwise misleading. He said “there are about 2 million Americans working right now” because of last year’s stimulus bill. But his own economic advisers say …

Gimmicks in the Health Care Bill?

Democrats in Congress have been pleased with the Congressional Budget Office’s findings that both the House and Senate health care bills would reduce the deficit over 10 years. But is that assessment due to some accounting trickery in the bills?
The conservative Employment Policies Institute is airing an ad on cable news networks featuring June O’Neill, former director of the CBO in the mid- to late ’90s, who says that "some politicians are using accounting gimmicks to hide the cost"

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.

Facts Of The Union

We found some puffery in President Bush’s State of the Union address.