A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Liberal Lobby Lacks Context

A liberal coalition calling itself Americans Against Escalation in Iraq is running a TV ad that says the U.S. will be in Iraq for a decade to come and that the military draft will be reinstated. But the ad supports those conclusions by twisting the words of two senior generals.

Richardson’s Job Boast

Summary

Democratic presidential contender Bill Richardson boasts of creating 80,000 jobs since becoming governor of New Mexico. Not yet, he hasn’t. The state has gained fewer than 76,000 payroll jobs since he took office, and official figures showed a mere 68,100 gain when he first started making his inflated boast last year. He bases his claim on a definition of “jobs” that includes unpaid workers in family businesses and freelancers who don’t draw a paycheck.

The Immigration Showdown

Summary

In recent weeks, Republican presidential candidates Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney have sparred over their immigration records and policies. We find some problems with what both of them have been saying.

Giuliani released a radio ad in which he says of persons applying for citizenship, "we should make certain that they can read English, write English and speak English." Actually, those already are requirements for citizenship.
Giuliani’s ad also said illegal immigrants convicted of crimes in the U.S.

What is a Civil Union?

Summary

When politicians say they support civil unions but not marriage for people of the same sex, what do they mean? We find three main differences between civil unions and marriage as it’s traditionally viewed:

The right to federal benefits. States that allow some type of same-sex union are able to grant only state rights. The Defense of Marriage Act passed in 1996 prohibits same-sex couples from receiving federal marriage rights and benefits.
Portability.

AFL-CIO Democratic Forum

Summary

Seven Democratic presidential candidates appeared Aug. 7 in a nationally televised forum at Chicago’s Soldier Field, sponsored by the AFL-CIO. Once again, we found some claims that were wrong and others that were questionable.

Sen. Joseph Biden said none of the others "has a better labor record than me." Actually, they all have better AFL-CIO "lifetime" ratings than Biden.
Sen. Barack Obama attempted to revise his own earlier remarks about invading Pakistan, claiming: "I did not say that we would immediately go in unilaterally.

Sunday Morning Missteps

Summary

The Republican presidential candidates debated – and sounded some more false notes:

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney falsely claimed U.S. job growth had been nearly 17 times faster than Europe’s. Actually, European Union employment grew faster than that of the U.S. last year. Romney’s source for the information told FactCheck.org that he himself would no longer use the figures.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani accused Democratic candidates of "appeasement" toward Islamic terrorists.

Giuliani’s Tax Puffery

A new radio ad boasts that Rudy Giuliani “cut or eliminated 23 taxes” while mayor of New York City. We find that to be an overstatement.

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.

Firefighters vs. Giuliani

The New York City firefighters union is running a misleading video blaming former Mayor Rudy Giuliani for the deaths of more than 100 firefighters on September 11, 2001.

More Mitt Missteps

Mitt Romney has been boasting of accomplishments as governor, while also outlining foreign policy proposals. But Romney sometimes alters the past, exaggerates his record and traffics in ambiguous language.