A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Kasich’s Post-Cold War Defense Cuts

A pro-Jeb Bush super PAC says John Kasich “voted with Nancy Pelosi to cut troop levels and military funding.” That’s true. But those votes came at a time when the debate was not whether to reduce troops or defense spending, but by how much.

Ad Attacks Cruz as ‘Weak’ on Defense

An ad from a conservative advocacy group attacks Sen. Ted Cruz as “weak” on defense, but makes several misleading claims to back up that assessment.

Rick Perry’s Talking Point on Defense Cuts

Rick Perry says the U.S. is at risk because “our spending on defense has declined 21 percent over four years.” But that includes war funding, which has sharply declined now that U.S. combat troops are out of Iraq and leaving Afghanistan.

Cheney’s Misguided Missile Attack

Dick Cheney says President Obama scrapped the Bush administration’s missile defense system in Europe “at the mere request” of Russian President Vladimir Putin. That’s false.

Romney All Wet on Ships

The Romney campaign is moving full steam ahead with a new radio ad that repeats a misleading debate claim by Romney that the size of the Navy’s fleet is the smallest it has been since 1917. The number of ships is actually up a bit since 2007 under President George W. Bush.
Moreover, Navy officials say it’s silly to compare the size of the fleet in 1917 with that of today, because the mission and capabilities of today’s nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and nuclear submarines are vastly different than that of the gunboats and coal-powered dreadnaughts of 1917,

Will Romney Increase Defense Spending By $2 Trillion?

Paul Ryan insisted in the Oct. 11 debate that Mitt Romney will not increase defense spending. Joe Biden interrupted Ryan twice to say Romney will increase it by $2 trillion. Who’s right? The answer depends on another question: compared with what?
Romney would spend $2 trillion more than Obama over the next 10 years on the Pentagon’s base budget — which excludes war funding. But Romney won’t increase total annual defense spending as a percentage of gross domestic product compared with fiscal year 2012.

Crossroads Colors Kaine’s Cuts

Two ads from Crossroads GPS paint incomplete and misleading pictures of Tim Kaine’s support for cutting education and defense spending.

One ad says that “when Tim Kaine proposed harsh funding cuts for Virginia schools, one Democrat called it ‘a kick in the teeth.’ ” It’s true that the top official in one wealthy county did that — when the then-Virginia governor proposed a one-year delay to a scheduled change that would have prevented cuts for two-thirds of the state’s poorest school districts.

The Bad Apples Theory

CBS’ "Face the Nation" on May 17 featured the divergent views of Anthony Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, and Republican Rep. Peter King of New York. Host Harry Smith asked about President Obama’s decision to block the court-ordered release of photos allegedly showing harsh treatment of detainees during interrogations in Iraq and Afghanistan. That led King to say that top government officials didn’t know about the abuse of prisoners, while Romero said the "highest levels"

Did Obama Misquote Churchill?

In the New York Times‘ "Caucus" blog today, Kate Phillips offers a well-documented and thorough analysis of a lingering controversy: Did Winston Churchill really say about torture what President Obama says he did?
There has been considerable back-and-forth elsewhere regarding this passage in the president’s "100 days" news conference:

Obama, April 29: I was struck by an article that I was reading the other day, talking about the fact that the British during World War II,

Tiny Iran

Feb. 26 marked the beginning of the Conservative Political Action Committee (or CPAC) annual convention. Conference speakers include leading figures from the Republican Party as well as conservative columnists, pundits and activists. Among yesterday’s speakers was John Bolton, U.N. ambassador under President George W. Bush and now a senior fellow with the conservative American Enterprise Institute. During his speech, Bolton repeated a bit of old bunk from the 2008 campaign, falsely claiming that Obama called Iran “a tiny threat.”