PolitiFact's 2012 Truth-O-Meter stats
By Jim Tharpe
Published on Monday, December 31st, 2012 at 3:14 p.m.
The year 2012 is fading faster than a Mayan end-of-the world prediction.
So the scribes at the AJC Truth-O-Meter decided to take a look back at the year that was --- a year of more than 200 fact checks by your local team of truth-seekers, collectively known as PolitiFact Georgia.
We did our best to sort out an avalanche of political rhetoric cascading from a major vote on a transportation initiative --- the so-called T-SPLOST --- a contentious presidential election, a divisive charter school vote and the proposal for a new sports stadium in downtown Atlanta.
As always, PolitiFact attempted to parse political truth from political fiction using in-depth reporting and the trusty Truth-O-Meter, which ranks statements from True to False to Pants On Fire, with allowances for Mostly True, Half True and Mostly False.
We looked at conservatives and liberals, Democrats and Republicans, President Barack Obama and GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, and assorted other politicians and power brokers.
We published a total of 242 fact checks.
We looked at more Republicans than Democrats. Most of our fact checks were Georgia-based, and Republicans control state government and the state's congressional delegation.
Republicans have more control over state policy than Democrats, and GOP statements in Georgia are usually more apt to come under the glare of the Truth-O-Meter.
We looked at 188 people or groups we consider Republican or conservative, 76 people or groups we consider Democratic or liberal and 48 people or groups we tagged as not falling clearly into the first two categories.
Most ratings, as in 2011, fell between the extreme ratings of True and Pants On Fire.
Ratings for the GOP/conservative fact checks broke down like this: 26 True, 22 Mostly True, 32 Half True, 14 Mostly False, 16 False and eight Pants On Fire.
Ratings for the Democratic/liberal fact checks broke down like this: 10 True, 14 Mostly True, 23 Half True, 10 Mostly False, 15 False and four Pants On Fire.
For fact checks for groups and individuals we labeled as "other, " the ratings broke this way: seven True, 14 Mostly True, eight Half True, eight Mostly False, eight False and three Pants On Fire.
The new year is now upon us. We'll be back with fact checks on the proposed stadium, the state Legislature and the gun-control debate.
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Researchers: Jim Tharpe
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