Four years ago today -- June 25, 2010 -- PolitiFact Rhode Island published its first Truth-O-Meter rulings. Political discourse in the state hasn't been the same since. We constantly see politicians and other public figures hesitating when they speak, expressing concern that they will be fact-checked. It has made some -- but not all -- take more care in the facts they present to support their arguments, improving the level of political discourse in the state. Click on "more" to see how our rulings break down.
By C. Eugene Emery Jr. :: Published on Wednesday, June 25th, 2014 at 1:21 p.m.
Clay Pell, Gina Raimondo and Angel Taveras have at least two things in common. They’re all running in the Democratic primary for governor. And they’ve all faced PolitiFact Rhode Island’s Truth-O-Meter, with varying outcomes. As the candidates prepare for Tuesday night’s Providence Journal/WPRI-12 debate, we thought we’d take a look at their PolitiFact scorecards.
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Tuesday, June 10th, 2014 at 12:01 a.m.
It's time once again for a peek into the PolitiFact Rhode Island's mailbag to look at some of the reactions we've gotten from readers to recent fact checks.
By C. Eugene Emery Jr. :: Published on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 at 3:00 p.m.
What piqued the interest of PolitiFact Rhode Island readers last month? According to our website data, they were interested in whether the poorest states are Red states, if today's young adults are fit for military service, and the degree to which cancer-causing chemicals are present in marijuana smoke.
By C. Eugene Emery Jr. :: Published on Tuesday, April 1st, 2014 at 1:55 p.m.
U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, one of more than two dozen senators who took part in an all-night talkathon this week on the Senate floor to warn about the dangers of climate change, was on familiar territory. Whitehouse, a Rhode Island Democrat, has now made 60 Senate speeches on climate change, returning to the floor each week the Senate is in session. He comes armed with facts and figures, and staff-produced charts and posters, to back up his warnings of drastic environmental and social consequences if serious actions aren’t taken to address global warming. Whitehouse and the other senators took turns from late Monday through Tuesday morning to call attention to an issue he says has largely been ignored. PolitiFact Rhode Island has fact-checked many of Whitehouse’s claims about climate change; overall, he has fared well with the Truth-O-Meter. Here's a sample:
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Tuesday, March 11th, 2014 at 12:01 a.m.
Has Clay Pell, one of the Democrats running for Rhode Island governor, lived a full calendar year in Rhode Island? Pell, the grandson of the late U.S. Sen. Claiborne Pell, was asked that question twice during a television interview. He never answered with a simple yes or no, leading some to question how strong his ties really are to the Ocean State. Because Pell’s Rhode Island residency has become an issue in his first-ever run for political office, we took a closer look at his record. Here's what we found:
By John Hill :: Published on Sunday, March 9th, 2014 at 12:02 a.m.
In the past year, PolitiFact Rhode Island has published nearly 100 Truth-O-Meter rulings on such weighty issues as gun control, same-sex marriage and climate change. Not surprisingly, all of those topics were represented in our Top 10 rulings of 2013, along with some subjects that were, shall we say, slightly less serious. We thought we’d look back on our most popular items of the year -- and our most popular item of all time, which involved Congress. And baboons.
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Sunday, December 29th, 2013 at 12:01 a.m.
PolitiFact National has chosen the most significant falsehood of the year: President Barack Obama's repeated statement, "If you like your health care plan, you can keep it."
By Angie Drobnic Holan :: Published on Friday, December 13th, 2013 at 10:48 a.m.
It's been a busy few months for PolitiFact Rhode Island, and it's not even an election year. We’ve checked claims on school test scores, whether the U.S. military prohibits donations to the Tea Party, Obamacare and a host of other topics. And many of our readers have let us know what they think of our rulings. We thought we’d share some of their comments with you.
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Saturday, November 30th, 2013 at 12:01 a.m.
U.S. Rep. James Langevin says 60 percent of the weapons used in crimes come from 1 percent of U.S. gun dealers
During a panel discussion on gun violence at the annual meeting of the Rhode Island Public Health Association, U.S. Rep. James Langevin startled the crowd when he declared that 1 percent of gun dealers nationally are responsible for selling 60 percent of the weapons used in crimes. His Oct. 21 comment took us aback as well. Only a tiny fraction of gun dealers have provided the weapons for most gun-related crimes in the United States? We decided to check.
By C. Eugene Emery Jr. :: Published on Tuesday, November 12th, 2013 at 12:01 a.m.
Our Truth-O-Meter rulings sometimes provoke strong reactions, especially when they involve pants aflame. One Rhode Island legislator recently took to the floor of the House of Representatives to respond to a Pants on Fire ruling she received.
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Thursday, July 11th, 2013 at 4:28 p.m.
There's a match being lit, but it's not being used to set someone's pants on fire. It's to light three birthday candles. PolitiFact Rhode Island is now three years old. We think it's a cause for celebration and, from what our readers have told us, they have reason to celebrate as well.
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Friday, July 5th, 2013 at 11:05 a.m.
The push for tougher gun control legislation continues in the General Assembly Tuesday, April 9, as state officials hold a news conference at the State House to promote a package of bills covering such issues as background checks, firearms safety, weapons sales and modifying penalties for existing gun laws.
By C. Eugene Emery Jr. :: Published on Tuesday, April 9th, 2013 at 12:01 a.m.
Over the last 12 months, PolitiFact Rhode Island issued 117 Truth-O-Meter rulings, on claims ranging from Obamacare to school prayer to foreign aid. All had some Rhode Island connection, but many of the most-read items -- based on traffic on our PolitiFact Rhode Island website -- focused on issues far beyond the state’s borders. Thanks to the reach of the Internet, many have remained popular long after publication, in part because PolitiFact, with affiliates in 11 states, has become a go-to reference for people seeking to separate fact from fiction. So as a farewell to the year, we thought we’d share with you the PolitiFact Rhode Island Top Ten Most Widely Read rulings for 2012:
By Tim Murphy :: Published on Sunday, December 30th, 2012 at 12:01 a.m.
At Thanksgiving dinner, there's probably a good chance you'll end up sitting beside your uncle. You love your uncle, but you could do without all those chain e-mails that he forwards to you, the ones that claim the government is forcing you to get rid of your light bulbs, that "Obamacare" is going to put a tax on home sales and that President Barack Obama fits the biblical description of the Antichrist. (Note to uncles: We're not really singling you out. Chain e-mails get forwarded by aunts, grandparents and plenty of other relatives.)
By Bill Adair :: Published on Wednesday, November 21st, 2012 at 4:36 p.m.
Browse through previous articles featured on Rhode Island:
We want to hear your suggestions and comments. Email the Rhode Island Truth-O-Meter with feedback and with claims you'd like to see checked. If you send us a comment, we'll assume you don't mind us publishing it unless you tell us otherwise.