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McCain: $3 million to study the DNA of bears?

We’ve heard that one before.
McCain’s been playing it for laughs since 2003. The study in question was done by the U.S. Geological Survey, and it relied in part on federal appropriations. Readers (and politicians) may disagree on whether a noninvasive study of grizzly bear population and habitat is a waste of money. McCain clearly thinks it is — but on the other hand, he never moved to get rid of the earmark. In fact, he voted for the bill that made appropriations for the study.

It’s High Season

We have all kinds of new items on our main site, FactCheck.org.
Check out our article on a recent McCain-Palin ad that falsely asserts Sen. Barack Obama has been “mum on the market crisis.” He’s actually made several statements on it, including a speech with a six-point proposal a day before this ad was released.
Also, learn all about “predator control” (a.k.a. shooting wolves from airplanes). A Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund ad is correct in that Gov.

Jon Stewart: Joe Biden “Crazy Reckless?” Oops!

 Comedian Jon Stewart had a nice riff going on “The Daily Show” Wednesday night (Sept. 24) until he scolded Joe Biden as being “crazy reckless” about his gun facts. But in this case, Biden knew what he was talking about, and Stewart didn’t. (You can view Stewart's comments on the Comedy Channel website, if you don't mind watching the commercial that precedes it.)
Stewart starts off making fun of Biden’s remark about FDR “going on television,”

The Whoppers of 2008

In an effort to preemptively fact-check what the candidates may say in the debates, we present: The Whoppers of 2008. So far, anyway. There are more than five weeks to go before Election Day.
McCain misrepresents Obama’s tax plan. Obama misleads seniors on McCain and Social Security. Other falsehoods involve veterans, energy, Iran, Iraq, health care and bridges to nowhere.
Check out the full story on FactCheck.org.

Credit Where it Isn’t Due

The McCain-Palin campaign is running a series of upbeat ads designed to appeal to workers in three states (Michigan, Ohio, and New Mexico – for some reason the New Mexico ad isn’t on McCain’s YouTube channel, but it sounds pretty much like the Ohio one). Sometimes even upbeat ads need a little tweaking.

Here’s the Michigan ad. In this one, McCain says that “John McCain and his congressional allies” have a plan for Michigan, including “loans to upgrade assembly lines.”

Obama’s Connection to Raines

Before the McCain-Palin campaign tried to link Sen. Barack Obama with political heavyweights in Chicago, the campaign claimed that Obama was being advised on the economy by Franklin Raines, former Fannie Mae CEO.
In an ad titled “Advice,” the McCain campaign makes the claim that “Obama has no background in economics.” Then it asks the question, “Who advises him?” The answer, according to the ad: “The Post says it’s Franklin Raines, for ‘advice on mortgage and housing policy.’

Biden, FDR and the Invention of Television

In a sit-down interview with CBS Evening News’ Katie Couric that aired Sept. 22, Sen. Joe Biden tried to make a historical comparison between political leadership during the trying economic times of today and yesterday. But he got some of his history wrong. Biden told Couric: “When the stock market crashed, Franklin D. Roosevelt got on the television and didn’t just talk about the, you know, the princes of greed.”

There are several things wrong with that statement.

Biden’s “Patriotic Act”

 A recent McCain-Palin ad titled “Patriotic Act” puts a new twist on some old false claims, then adds a misleading implication, just for good measure. Here’s the ad:

We can start with a list of what the ad does get right:

Joe Biden did indeed say that paying taxes is patriotic.

Actually, that’s pretty much the whole list. The rest of the ad is mostly malarkey, starting with the implication that Biden called it patriotic for most Americans to pay taxes.

Health Care and Handguns

What do these two things have in common? Not much, except that we published two stories on the topics Monday evening at FactCheck.org.
First, we looked at an Obama-Biden ad that took McCain’s words on his health care plan and banking regulation out of context:
Out of Context on Health Care
September 22, 2008
Then, we debunked various claims the NRA has been making in fliers and TV ads about Obama’s stance on gun control:
NRA Targets Obama
September 22,

Chicago Cronies

Have you seen that McCain-Palin ad linking Obama to scary, corrupt Chicago powerbrokers? Well, it’s pretty misleading. Outright false in its implication in fact. See our article on FactCheck.org for more on where the ad goes wrong:
Guilt and Associations
September 22, 2008