Sunday, December 21st, 2014

Truth-O-Meter's weekend rulings check Christie, Kyrillos claims

State Sen. Joseph Kyrillos blames U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez for increasing annual deficits in this NJToday segment. Go to 00:30 to hear his comments.

There’s a bit of credit and blame going around lately by New Jersey politicians, but this weekend’s Truth-O-Meter rulings showed that not all of it is accurate.

In case you missed it, the Truth-O-Meter gave Gov. Chris Christie a False on Sunday for his claim about the graduation rate of the Rutgers football team under former Coach Greg Schiano, and a Half True on Monday to state Sen. Joe Kyrillos for his attempt to attach the rising national deficit to U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez.

Christie claim

Christie said during a Jan. 31 interview on NJ 101.5 FM that the Rutgers football team had the highest graduation rate of any Division I school in the nation. Rutgers rated at the top of its conference – the Big East – but not the top of its division, according to the National Collegiate Athletic Association. A Rutgers spokesperson speculated that Christie might have been referring to Rutgers’ academic progress rate, which is predictive of eventual graduation rates. But an NCAA spokeswoman confirmed that graduation is not included in the actual APR measurement. Plus, six other schools had higher graduation rates in the Football Bowl Subdivision, formerly known as Division I-A, than Rutgers. Give the governor an ‘F’ for this one: False.

Kyrillos claim

It’s an election year, so it’s not unusual for candidates to hurl various accusations at one another. In this case, Kyrillos – a Republican representing part of Monmouth County who plans to challenge Menendez for his seat – claimed the national deficit climbed from $250 billion annually to $1.6 trillion a year on the Democrat’s watch. PolitiFact New Jersey found that while Menendez did vote for some measures that contributed to the rising deficit, the recession was also a major factor. Menendez bares some blame, but not all of it. Hence, the Half True.

To comment on this story, go to NJ.com.

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