A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Santorum’s Bogus Euthanasia Claims

Rick Santorum grossly mischaracterized euthanasia practices in the Netherlands during an appearance at a faith conference. He overstated the rate of euthanasia and falsely claimed that the elderly are being killed against their will and wear “do not euthanize me” bracelets:

Santorum claimed legal euthanasia is responsible for “10 percent of all deaths for the Netherlands.” Government statistics show euthanasia is climbing, but represented only 2.3 percent in 2010, according to the most recent data.
Santorum added that half of the people euthanized were killed “involuntarily.” A representative of the Royal Dutch Medical Association said “there are no forced cases of euthanasia.”

Santorum Exaggerates Dropout Rate

Rick Santorum incorrectly claimed that “one of three children drop out of school” in the United States. The 2009 dropout rate was 8.1 percent — slightly higher than it was in 2008, but down significantly from the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and even early 2000s, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
It’s true that a higher percentage of students in the U.S. fail to graduate on time — about 23 percent in the 2009-10 school year.

Romney’s ‘Fiscal Conservative’ Whopper

Mitt Romney says, “If you want a fiscal conservative, you can’t vote for Rick Santorum, because he’s not.” Really? Three fiscally conservative groups rate Santorum’s lifetime voting record as better than most other Republican lawmakers, and one of them considers him a “Taxpayer Hero.”
Romney is on paper-thin ice with his new line of attack against his surging rival.

Santorum is a “hero” to the anti-pork Citizens Against Government Waste — which gives him a lifetime voting record better than three-fourths of the senators with whom he served in his final year in Congress.

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,”

Gunning Down the Truth in Michigan

With Rick Santorum polling well in Mitt Romney’s birth state, a high-stakes TV shootout has broken out in Michigan. But some shots are off the mark. An amusing Santorum ad features a Romney look-alike machine-gunning mud at a cardboard cutout of Santorum. But …

Is Santorum the Biggest (Senate) Loser?

Entrepreneur Donald Trump dismissed the surging candidacy of Rick Santorum by claiming that Santorum lost his Senate seat in 2006 by a wider margin than any incumbent senator in history. He’s wrong.
In fact, there have been two dozen incumbent senators who have taken worse beatings than Santorum did in 2006. Trump need only have checked back as far as the 2010 midterm elections — when Democrat Blanche Lincoln lost her Arkansas seat — to find an incumbent senator who lost by a bigger margin than Santorum did.

South Carolina Smackdown

Facts were sometimes used as blunt instruments as the four remaining GOP presidential candidates hammered away at each other in the last debate before Saturday’s South Carolina primary. Santorum and Romney tangled …

Santorum Wrong on Marriage

Rick Santorum claimed that the Obama administration told an abstinence education group that it could “no longer promote marriage” to at-risk youth “as a way of avoiding poverty.” That’s not true, according to the group Santorum mentioned.
At the Republican presidential debate on Jan. 16, Santorum said that Best Friends — an organization that promotes “character education” for girls in schools and promotes abstinence from premarital sex, as well as drugs and alcohol — had been told by the Obama administration that the group could no longer “promote marriage”

And Then There Were Five …

In a spirited debate, Republican candidates variously strained the facts on President Obama’s record on trade, tangled with each other over a misleading ad about allowing felons to vote, and erred on the history of the federal income tax.
Otherwise, the five remaining GOP presidential candidates pretty much stuck to the facts as they debated Jan. 16 at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The event was sponsored by Fox News and the Wall Street Journal.

Red White and Blue Fund

A pro-Rick Santorum “super PAC” started by a political adviser to former Iowa Rep. Jim Nussle.