Debate factchecks

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by jonbig04, Oct 3, 2008.

  1. * Palin mistakenly claimed that troop levels in Iraq had returned to “pre-surge” levels. Levels are gradually coming down but current plans would have levels higher than pre-surge numbers through early next year, at least.

    * Biden incorrectly said “John McCain voted the exact same way” as Obama on a controversial troop funding bill. The two were actually on opposite sides.

    * Palin repeated a false claim that Obama once voted in favor of higher taxes on “families” making as little as $42,000 a year. He did not. The budget bill in question called for an increase only on singles making that amount, but a family of four would not have been affected unless they made at least $90,000 a year.

    * Biden wrongly claimed that McCain “voted the exact same way” as Obama on the budget bill that contained an increase on singles making as little as $42,000 a year. McCain voted against it. Biden was referring to an amendment that didn't address taxes at that income level.

    * Palin claimed McCain’s health care plan would be “budget neutral,” costing the government nothing. Independent budget experts estimate McCain's plan would cost tens of billions each year, though details are too fuzzy to allow for exact estimates.

    * Biden wrongly claimed that McCain had said "he wouldn't even sit down" with the president of Spain. Actually, McCain didn't reject a meeting, but simply refused to commit himself one way or the other during an interview.

    * Palin wrongly claimed that “millions of small businesses” would see tax increases under Obama’s tax proposals. At most, several hundred thousand business owners would see increases.
  2. Thanks Johbig for posting that. It's good to see the mistakes and misstatements for both sides without bias.
  3. jem


  4. Its nice to see where both sides have no idea what they are saying haha.
  5. Here's a few more:

    Biden claimed a comment he made about "clean coal" was taken out of context:

    Biden: My record for 25 years has supported clean coal technology. A comment made in a rope line was taken out of context. I was talking about exporting that technology to China so when they burn their dirty coal, it won't be as dirty, it will be clean.

    Was it really taken out of context? Here’s the full exchange, which took place while Biden was shaking hands with voters along a rope line in Ohio.

    Woman: Wind and solar are flourishing here in Ohio, why are you supporting clean coal?
    Biden: We’re not supporting clean coal. Guess what? China’s building two every week, two dirty coal plants, and it’s polluting the United States. It’s causing people to die.

    Obama-Biden campaign spokesman David Wade later said that “Biden’s point is that China is building coal plants with outdated technology every day, and the United States needs to lead by developing clean coal technologies.”

    Whatever Biden meant or didn’t mean to say on the rope line, he has supported clean coal in the past. When the McCain camp used this one remark from Biden as the basis for a TV ad saying that Obama-Biden oppose clean coal, we said the claim was false. Obama’s position in favor of clean coal has been clear, and pushing for the technology has been part of his energy policy.

    McCain in the Vanguard of Mortgage Reform?

    Palin said that McCain had sounded the alarm on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac two years ago.

    Palin: We need to look back, even two years ago, and we need to be appreciative of John McCain's call for reform with Fannie Mae, with Freddie Mac, with the mortgage-lenders, too, who were starting to really kind of rear that head of abuse.

    Palin is referring to a bill that would have increased oversight on Fannie and Freddie. In our recent article about assigning blame for the crisis, we found that by the time McCain added his name to the bill as a cosponsor, the collapse was well underway. Home prices began falling only two months later. Our colleagues at PolitiFact also questioned this claim.

    And There's More...

    A few other misleads of note:

    * Palin said, "We're circulating about $700 billion a year into foreign countries" for imported oil, repeating an outdated figure often used by McCain. At oil prices current as of Sept. 30, imports are running at a rate of about $493 billion per year.

    * Biden claimed that McCain said in a magazine article that he wanted to deregulate the health care industry as the banking industry had been. That’s taking McCain’s words out of context. As we’ve said before, he was talking specifically about his proposal to allow the sale of health insurance across state lines.

    * Biden said five times that McCain's tax plan would give oil companies a "$4 billion tax cut." As we’ve noted previously, McCain’s plan would cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent — for ALL corporations, not just oil companies. Biden uses a Democratic think tank's estimate for what the rate change is worth to the five largest U.S. oil companies.

    * Palin threw out an old canard when she criticized Obama for voting for the 2005 energy bill and said, “that’s what gave those oil companies those big tax breaks.” It’s a false attack Sen. Hillary Clinton used against Obama in the primary, and McCain himself has hurled. It’s true that the bill gave some tax breaks to oil companies, but it also took away others. And according to the Congressional Research Service, the bill created a slight net increase in taxes for the oil industry.

    * Biden said that Iraq had an "$80 billion surplus." The country was once projected to have as much as a $79 billion surplus, but no more. The Iraqis have $29 billion in the bank, and could have $47 billion to $59 billion by the end of the year, as we noted when Obama used the incorrect figure. A $21 billion supplemental spending bill, passed by the Iraqi legislature in August, knocked down the old projection.

    * Biden said four times that McCain had voted 20 times against funding alternative energy. However, in analyzing the Obama campaign's list of votes after the first presidential debate, we found the number was actually 11. In the other instances the Obama-Biden campaign cites, McCain voted not against alternative energy but against mandatory use of alternative energy, or he voted in favor of allowing exemptions from these mandates.