A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Another Rick Perry Whopper

Texas Gov. Rick Perry makes another wildly false claim in a new Web ad — saying that the U.S. poverty rate has hit an “all-time high.” In fact, the rate is the highest since 1993, but 7.3 percentage points lower than it was in 1959, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent annual tallies.

Perry’s false claim about the poverty rate follows his false claim during his second debate appearance, when he said Obama’s stimulus measure “created zero jobs”

An Antidote for Bachmann’s Anecdote

No scientific evidence backs Rep. Michele Bachmann's second-hand story of HPV vaccine causing mental retardation. Our research reveals that 35 million doses of the vaccine have been administered, without a single reported case of mental retardation. A total of four cases of a disorder involving inflammation of the brain have been reported, but a panel of scientists found there was insufficient evidence to establish that the vaccine caused those.
The Republican presidential candidate has repeatedly related an anecdote about a post-debate encounter with a woman who told her a vaccine promoted by Texas Gov.

CNN/Tea Party Debate

The GOP presidential candidates debated for the second time in six days — tossing out a variety of false and misleading claims on everything from Social Security to vaccines for sexually transmitted diseases. …

Social Security Silliness

Prior to the GOP debate in Florida, Republicans and Democrats alike floated false statements on Social Security. The Florida Democratic Party incorrectly says in a web ad that Mitt Romney "would privatize" Social Security, while Romney wrongly claims in a campaign flier that Rick Perry "wants to end Social Security."
It's true that Romney has expressed support for allowing younger workers to voluntarily invest a portion of their Social Security taxes in private retirement accounts. But that's not the same as privatizing Social Security,

FactChecking the Reagan Debate

The GOP candidates took some liberties when discussing jobs, Social Security, immigration, health care and other issues during the presidential debate at the Ronald Reagan Library: Perry exaggerated when he called Social Security a “Ponzi scheme” that won’t …

Spinning Job Growth: By the Numbers

Romney, Perry and Huntsman each cherry-picked facts about job growth in their states when they were governor. Here we offer a broader look at the numbers, which sometimes tell a different story than the candidates.
During the GOP presidential candidates' debate on Sept. 7:

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney boasted that Massachusetts was losing jobs when he took office and gaining jobs when he left. That's true, but the entire country was experiencing job growth during that period,

Paul ‘Stood with Reagan,’ But Not Long

Ron Paul highlights his ties to Ronald Reagan in a web video, but fails to mention he disavowed Reagan's policies in 1987 — citing them as a reason for resigning from the Republican party that year.
In a letter of resignation to the chairman of the Republican National Committee in the spring of 1987, Paul wrote that "Reagan and the Republican Party have given us skyrocketing deficits, massive monetary inflation, indiscriminate military spending, irrational and unconstitutional foreign policy,

Did Perry Double Texas Budget?

A pro-Bachmann PAC misleads viewers when it says Rick Perry doubled the size of Texas' budget from 2000 to 2010. When adjusted for inflation and population, the total Texas budget increased by 21 percent during that time. Excluding federal funds, however, state spending actually went down by 6 percent.
The ad also says the Texas governor this year is "spending more money than the state takes in." That's true, but the state is required to balance the budget.

Texas-Size Recovery

Presidential candidate and Texas Gov. Rick Perry has boasted of significant job growth in his state in the past few years. And for good reason: It’s true. While Texas clearly hasn’t avoided the recession, the state has done well in terms of …

What Perry Really Said About Secession

The Obama team falsely suggests Texas Gov. Rick Perry advocated secession. Perry's actual remarks have been mischaracterized. Perry entertained a reporter's question about secession after a tea party rally in 2009, and warned that "if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what may come out of that?" But he's made clear all along that "we've got a great union" and there is "no reason to dissolve it."
Perry has carelessly commented that Texas has a unique right to secede from the union,