Michele Bachmann and the Truth-O-Meter
Editor's Note: This is the first in a series of stories summarizing our ratings on the Republican candidates for president. We'll be publishing them through Dec. 31.
Of all the PolitiFact report cards on the presidential candidates, Michele Bachmann's has been talked about the most.
The talk has come from journalists and critics of the Minnesota Republican who have noted the large number of False and Pants on Fire ratings she's earned. Of the 53 Bachmann claims we've rated, 59 percent have earned a False or a Pants on Fire.
Bachmann's PolitiFact record has been the subject of a story in the New York Times, and she was asked about it on CNN, CBS’ Face the Nation, and ABC’s Good Morning America.
Although her record might not be something you would boast about, Bachmann cited her PolitiFact ratings when Newt Gingrich challenged her facts at a Dec. 15, 2011, debate. She said that at a previous debate, "PolitiFact came out and said that everything I said was true."
That claim, however, was not true. We gave her a Pants on Fire at the previous debate for a claim that the Massachusetts health care plan was "socialized medicine."
Many of her 19 False and 12 Pants on Fire ratings have involved claims about President Barack Obama, such as her statement blaming him for the costs of the Iraq war and that he has virtually no one in his cabinet with private-sector experience.
She has earned five True statements and four Mostly True, largely for claims about past statements or actions by other presidential candidates.