Fact-checking the CNN debate in Florida
By Bill Adair
Published on Thursday, January 26th, 2012 at 8:16 p.m.
Updated Jan. 27, 2012, 1:56 p.m.
Thursday's CNN debate was another contentious affair with lots of back and forth between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich.
Romney and Gingrich got into a back and forth about an ad from Romney that claimed Gingrich once said Spanish was the "language of the ghetto." We rated a Romney ad on that Mostly True.
Gingrich boasted about his fiscal record, saying, "We balanced the budget with the 1997 Balanced Budget Act, and ultimately had four consecutive balanced budgets." That wording is more accurate than his previous claims, which have indicated they all occurred when he was speaker. His new wording earned a Mostly True.
Rick Santorum, meanwhile, attacked both candidates for having supported health care plans similar to that of President Barack Obama. Gingrich, for example, advocated a mandate that people buy insurance "for 20 years." We looked into a similar statement previously and rated it Mostly True.
Santorum also called the Massachusetts health care plan supported by Romney "a top-down, government-run helth care system." While there are some elements of the law that opponents might view as "top-down," including the mandate that everyone must buy insurance or pay a penalty and the requirement that most employers offer insurance, other elements are not. As for a "government-run health care system," government run systems have doctors on the payroll, and Massachusetts does not. We rated it Mostly False.
We'll be checking other claims from the debate today and will link to them from this story.
See Truth-O-Meter items.
Researchers: Bill Adair
We want to hear your suggestions and comments.
For tips or comments on our Obameter and our GOP-Pledge-O-Meter promise databases, please e-mail the Obameter. If you are commenting on a specific promise, please include the wording of the promise.For comments about our Truth-O-Meter or Flip-O-Meter items, please e-mail the Truth-O-Meter. We’re especially interested in seeing any chain e-mails you receive that you would like us to check out. If you send us a comment, we'll assume you don't mind us publishing it unless you tell us otherwise.
Keep up to date with Politifact :
- Sign up for our e-mail (about once a week)
- Put a free PolitiFact widget on your blog or Web page
- Subscribe to our RSS feeds on Truth-O-Meter items
- Subscribe to our RSS feeds on GOP Pledge-O-Meter items
- Subscribe to our RSS feeds on Obameter items
- Advertise on PolitiFact
- Shop the PolitiFact store for T-shirts, hats and other PolitiFact swag