A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Bachmann Wrong on Social Security, Jobs, Debt

Michele Bachmann argued that “my facts are accurate” at the Dec. 15 debate, but a few days later, she got several facts wrong. On “Meet the Press” the presidential candidate had a couple of exchanges with host David Gregory over the validity of her statements on Social Security and the debt. Among the inaccuracies:

Bachmann said she didn’t support the payroll tax cut because “it denied $111 billion to the Social Security trust fund”and “put senior citizens at risk.”

The Final Iowa Debate

The final Republican presidential debate in advance of the Jan. 3 first-in-the-nation Iowa party caucuses produced a few claims we found worthy of quibbling over. Gingrich challenged Bachmann’s factual accuracy regarding the former speaker’s record on abortion — but we found Bachmann was mostly correct. On the other hand, Bachmann used an inflated jobs figure when she criticized Obama’s decision to delay approval of a Canadian oil pipeline through the U.S.
Seven Republican presidential candidates debated Dec.

Soft on Anti-Semitism?

GOP presidential candidates Michele Bachmann and Mitt Romney claim that the U.S. ambassador to Belgium “justified” and “downplayed” anti-Semitism and blamed it on “Israel’s actions toward the Palestinians.” We find that to be a one-sided interpretation of what was actually said.
Others may view Ambassador Howard Gutman’s remarks differently than the Republican candidates when seen in full context. Gutman — who is Jewish and whose father survived the Holocaust — said, for example, that the “hatred”

More Baloney at ABC/Yahoo! Debate

False and misleading claims were flying again at the latest Republican presidential candidates’ debate in Iowa. Romney falsely claimed that no president before Obama had cut Medicare, and that Obama favored pre-1967 borders for Israel. Gingrich said he opposed cap-and-trade, even though …

Debate Watch

The six Republican presidential candidates who are set to meet and debate again on Dec. 10 have all made some claims that don’t line up with the facts. Will they repeat this shopworn spin, or have they tired of these talking points? Here’s what to watch and listen for when they gather in Des Moines for the latest debate — sponsored by ABC News, Yahoo! News, the Des Moines Register, local WOI-TV and the Republican Party of Iowa:

Gingrich: Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has boasted several times that he “helped balance the federal budget for four straight years.” But he was in Congress for only two of those years.

Bachmann’s Bad Economics

Michele Bachmann wrongly claims there is “not one shred of evidence that lowering the payroll tax rate created jobs.” Actually, the economy has gained more than 1.4 million jobs in the 11 months since the payroll tax holiday began.
That’s 84 percent more jobs than were added in the same period a year earlier. The unemployment rate has fallen from 9.4 percent in December 2010, just before the payroll tax was reduced temporarily, to 8.6 percent in November.

Pre-Thanksgiving Leftovers

The latest GOP debate was thin on memorable moments or major factual bloopers, but we do have some leftover claims to dispute before we shut down for the Thanksgiving holiday. We wouldn’t want anybody’s turkey dinner to be spoiled by worries that terrorists have come over the border with Mexico, for example. We also found misstatements about an oil pipeline, presidential contacts with Iran and cuts to the defense budget.
The two-hour debate was held in Washington,

South Carolina Debate

We found several exaggerations and misstatements in the latest Republican presidential candidates’ debate.

Romney issued a hollow threat to take China’s currency manipulation to a world body that doesn’t actually deal with overvalued money, and he claimed federal spending consumes more of the nation’s economic output than it really does.
Gingrich overstated U.S. aid to Egypt by a factor of two, and he claimed Obama repudiated former president Mubarak “overnight,” when in fact the president took seven days before he publicly urged Mubarak to begin an “orderly transition”

CNBC Debate: Slim Pickings for FactCheckers

The latest debate among Republican candidates for president was a tame affair that produced few factual claims needing correction. Candidates stuck mostly to promises and expressions of their conservative faith in free markets, and their disdain for government.
The debate was held Nov. 9 at Oakland University in Rochester, Mich., and included eight candidates: Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, businessman Herman Cain, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, Texas Rep. Ron Paul, Texas Gov.

Las Vegas Smackdown

Republican candidates hammered each other for two hours in a lively Nevada confrontation — and often strayed from the facts.

Cain denied that his tax plan would boost taxes for 84 percent of Americans, or fall heavily on those with lower incomes. A new study by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center says just that.
Santorum and Bachmann denounced Cain’s 9 percent “business flat tax” as a European-style “value-added” tax, which Cain also denied. The TPC study agrees with Santorum and Bachmann.