A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Christie vs. Paul and the Facts

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie conflated statistics when he claimed Sen. Rand Paul’s “pork-barrel spending” is the reason Kentucky receives more federal funds than New Jersey for every tax dollar it sends to Washington.

Slaloming Through Olympic Facts

With Rick Santorum attacking Mitt Romney for “hypocrisy” regarding his requests for Olympic earmarks, competing claims about taxpayer support for the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics are flying from all sides. But when it comes to presenting the facts, none of them stick the landing.

A Romney spokeswoman downplayed Romney’s efforts as “seeking money for post-9/11 security at the Olympics.” But there was a lot more to it than that. The Salt Lake City Organizing Committee under Romney requested —

Romney vs. Santorum: A Misleading Contrast

Pro-Romney forces are looking beyond Michigan, hammering Rick Santorum in four other states with a new TV ad making some misleading claims.

The ad claims Mitt Romney turned around Massachusetts’ finances without raising taxes, when in fact he raised hundreds of millions in new government “fees” when he was governor.
It also rehashes a boast that Romney issued 800 vetoes, but fails to mention that more than 700 were overridden.
It attacks former Sen. Santorum for “voting for billions in waste,”

McCain’s Erroneous Earmark Attack

Sen. John McCain incorrectly claimed that earmarks nearly doubled from $7.8 billion to $14.5 billion in Newt Gingrich’s first two years as House speaker. Actually, the increase was about half that.
Furthermore, earmarks first peaked, then declined under Gingrich. By the final year of his speakership, earmarked spending was 20 percent higher than before, not double.
McCain is a longtime opponent of earmarks, which are pet projects added to annual appropriations bills at the request of members of Congress.

A Guide to the New Hampshire Debates

The remaining Republican presidential candidates meet Jan. 7 for a prime-time ABC News/Yahoo!/WMUR-TV debate at Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire. Less than 12 hours later, they meet again for an NBC News/Facebook debate on “Meet the Press.”
Here are some possible lines of attack to expect, based on what the candidates, their campaigns and their surrogates have been saying lately.
‘Timid vs. Bold’
A major storyline heading into New Hampshire has been former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s stepped-up attacks on former Massachusetts Gov.

Bachmann’s Waterloo

Rep. Michele Bachmann officially joined the presidential campaign trail, but made a flurry of false and misleading claims along the way. The Minnesota Republican appeared on two …

Earmarks, Taxes and Premium Hikes

In episode 38 of our podcast, we highlight false statements from Democrats on the Sunday talk shows, and exaggerations from Republicans about the impact of the new health care law on premiums.

For more on the stories discussed in this episode, see:
Sunday Replay  Nov. 15
The Truth About Health Insurance Premiums  Nov. 19
 

Sunday Replay

Americans are worried about money – the government’s as well as their own – and the Sunday talk shows reflected that concern. We had a few bones to pick with their guests when it came to discussion of earmarks, the housing market and Social Security. And however one defines that murky term "middle class," we’re confident it doesn’t include 98 percent of the population. 
Did Dems Cut Earmarks in Half?
On "Fox News Sunday,"

Pork Radio

Former GOP presidential nominee John McCain is running attack ads again — this time against a fellow Republican who may contest his Senate seat this year.
Hotline’s Reid Wilson has the script for a new radio spot McCain is running against former congressman (and current Arizona radio personality) J.D Hayworth, who has been making moves toward a primary challenge against McCain.
The ad says that Hayworth "sounds conservative on the radio, but J.D. was one of the biggest spenders in Congress.

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 …