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        {
            "slug": "explaining-amy-klobuchars-role-newly-investigated-",
            "personalities": [
                {
                    "slug": "amy-klobuchar",
                    "full_name": "Amy Klobuchar",
                    "first_name": "Amy",
                    "last_name": "Klobuchar"
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                {
                    "slug": "chuck-todd",
                    "full_name": "Chuck Todd",
                    "first_name": "Chuck",
                    "last_name": "Todd"
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                    "slug": "chris-wallace",
                    "full_name": "Chris Wallace",
                    "first_name": "Chris",
                    "last_name": "Wallace"
                }
            ],
            "headline": "Explaining Amy Klobuchar’s role in the newly investigated conviction of Myon Burrell",
            "entry": "<p>During the <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/feb/20/fact-checking-las-vegas-democratic-debate-bloomber/\">Democratic debate in Las Vegas</a>, MSNBC anchor Chuck Todd <a href=\"https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/full-transcript-ninth-democratic-debate-las-vegas-n1139546\">grilled</a> Sen. Amy Klobuchar on her record as a county prosecutor, asking why minority voters should forgive her for her office&rsquo;s role in the controversial conviction of a black teenager.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;You did prosecute a black teenager who was sentenced to life in prison, despite what are now serious doubts about the evidence,&quot; Todd said.</p>\n\n<p>The case involving then-teenager Myon Burrell has faced heightened scrutiny following a <a href=\"https://apnews.com/115076e2bd194cfa7560cb4642ab8038\">year-long Associated Press investigation</a> that raised questions about Burrell&rsquo;s conviction.</p>\n\n<p>The investigation <a href=\"https://apnews.com/3417e8e96a8acba905a6c54cd9757f0c\">concluded</a> that Burrell&rsquo;s investigators relied on flawed evidence and failed to chase down leads that could have exonerated Burrell of charges that he fired the stray bullet that killed an 11-year-old girl, Tyesha Edwards, at her dining room table in 2002.</p>\n\n<p>In response to Todd&rsquo;s question, Klobuchar defended her career as the Hennepin County attorney and called for a review of the case based on the AP&rsquo;s findings.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;I think it&#39;s very important that that evidence come forward,&quot; she said.</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>The answer marked a shift in tone for the Minnesota senator, who previously heralded the case as proof of her commitment to justice for African Americans devastated by gun violence.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Klobuchar highlighted the victim&rsquo;s story in <a href=\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJz-5lvPDJA&amp;feature=youtu.be\">TV ads</a> aired during her Senate campaigns, and she&rsquo;s also cited it in <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/washington-post-live/2019/10/24/transcript-candidates-sen-amy-klobuchar/\">interviews</a> and <a href=\"https://youtu.be/sdLgYwphwb8?t=89\">speeches</a> during her ongoing bid for the presidency.</p>\n\n<p>On stage in September for the <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/09/13/transcript-third-democratic-debate/\">Democratic debate in Houston</a>, she said she was &quot;proud&quot; of her record seeking justice for African Americans, including the &quot;little girl named Tyesha Edwards, who was doing her homework at her kitchen table and was shot through the window.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Although Burrell, now 33, was convicted twice, he has maintained his innocence, filed several appeals and rejected all plea deals, arguing that he wasn&rsquo;t even at the scene of the shooting.</p>\n\n<p>More than 17 years later, the AP&rsquo;s investigation revealed that the case against him may have been flawed, and the Hennepin County attorney&rsquo;s office is standing by its conviction.</p>\n\n<p>Here, without weighing in on which side is right, we provide the facts.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What the AP investigation found</div>\n\n<p>Klobuchar served as Hennepin County&rsquo;s attorney from 1999 through 2006, meaning she supervised Burrell&rsquo;s original jury trial, conviction and sentencing in 2003.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>In 2005, the Minnesota Supreme Court <a href=\"https://drive.google.com/file/d/1qcCxTL7KPGv0D4ZTRuyMsNIJnvWjwu8j/view?usp=sharing\">reversed</a> Burrell&rsquo;s conviction over a Miranda-rights violation and other errors. By the time Burrell&rsquo;s case was revisited in the form of a bench trial, Klobuchar had moved to the Senate, leaving the retrial to her successor, Michael Freeman.</p>\n\n<p>In <a href=\"https://cases.justia.com/minnesota/supreme-court/2015-a13-1769.pdf?ts=1423072899\">both trials</a>, Burrell was convicted along with co-defendants Hans Williams and Ike Tyson of murdering Edwards while shooting at Timothy Oliver, a rival gang member.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Tyson now insists that he pulled the trigger, shooting from behind a 5-foot wall roughly 120 feet away with the intention of scaring Oliver, according to the AP&rsquo;s report.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>But other evidence led prosecutors to Burrell. At one point, Oliver said Burrell was the shooter. (Read the <a href=\"https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lyJmp3ka-juHoYJfa67jjh03i6_pXDzM/view?usp=sharing\">findings of fact in Burrell&rsquo;s second trial</a> in the spring of 2008.)&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The <a href=\"https://apnews.com/115076e2bd194cfa7560cb4642ab8038\">AP reviewed</a> more than a thousand pages of court documents, police records and interrogation videos. Its reporters interviewed dozens of witnesses, inmates, family members, ex-gang members, attorneys and criminal justice experts.</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 2 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>Their report said that Oliver, who died shortly before Burrell&rsquo;s second trial, had contradicted himself when describing what he saw during the night in question.</p>\n\n<p>The report also pinpointed potentially exonerating evidence that it said investigators did not fully pursue, including surveillance video footage from the convenience store Burrell claimed he was in at the time of the shooting, as well testimony from the people Burrell claimed he was with.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Prosecutors did not recover the gun or gather fingerprint or DNA evidence, the report said.</p>\n\n<p>Finally, the report accused Burrell&rsquo;s prosecutors of building a case in the second trial that was overly dependent on jailhouse informants, some of whom have recanted, who <a href=\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nAnLKCcpkk&amp;feature=youtu.be\">were shown on tape</a> being offered cash and sentence reductions in exchange for hearsay information.</p>\n\n<p>One informant, Terry Arrington, <a href=\"https://apnews.com/115076e2bd194cfa7560cb4642ab8038\">told the AP</a> that &quot;everybody told a lie to get time cut.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 3 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What Klobuchar, the Hennepin County attorney&rsquo;s office said</div>\n\n<p>We asked Klobuchar&rsquo;s campaign if she believes the case was correctly prosecuted and if she disputes any details of the AP&rsquo;s report. The campaign did not directly answer those questions.</p>\n\n<p>In a statement to PolitiFact, Klobuchar said the case should be reviewed &quot;immediately.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;If any evidence was not put forward or was not appropriately investigated, or if new evidence has emerged that should have been discovered at the time, it must be reviewed,&quot; she said.</p>\n\n<p>Freeman, the current Hennepin County attorney, said in a <a href=\"https://drive.google.com/file/d/14V6bcEZ261eqaylU_8bkQ-Zhbf9we7PG/view?usp=sharing\">statement</a> that his office has been cooperating with Burrell&rsquo;s lawyers and remains open to reviewing new evidence. But he also said the bulk of the evidence identified in the AP&rsquo;s report was not new.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;We pretty much dispute everything in the AP story,&quot; office spokesman Chuck Laszewski said.</p>\n\n<p>Freeman&rsquo;s <a href=\"https://drive.google.com/file/d/14V6bcEZ261eqaylU_8bkQ-Zhbf9we7PG/view?usp=sharing\">statement</a> addressed several of the AP investigation&rsquo;s findings, including the idea that Burrell could have been cleared by surveillance footage from the convenience store.</p>\n\n<p>Freeman said Burrell offered conflicting stories about where he was at the time of the shooting and that the people who claim to have been with him at the store &quot;never came forward.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>He said Burrell&rsquo;s conviction hinged on Oliver&rsquo;s testimony, earlier testimony from Williams and Tyson, and testimony from two people who said Burrell confessed to them privately.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Freeman also said it&rsquo;s common for investigators to offer cash rewards and for prosecutors to secure convictions without fingerprint or DNA evidence.</p>\n\n<p>Daniel Guerrero, an attorney for Burrell since 2017, said Burrell&rsquo;s legal team is moving forward in their attempts to free him.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There is really nothing definitive I have reviewed in either the investigation or prosecution of this case that leads me to believe Myon is guilty,&quot; Guerrero said.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What was Klobuchar&rsquo;s role?</div>\n\n<p>In an <a href=\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMTfdTOKnpU&amp;feature=youtu.be&amp;t=296\">interview</a> with &quot;Fox News Sunday&quot; after the AP investigation published, Klobuchar told host Chris Wallace that she &quot;didn&rsquo;t know about this new evidence until I saw the report.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 4 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>But the <a href=\"https://apnews.com/dce5ad0e014396fc021d81e9045b0d6c\">AP reported</a> that Klobuchar&rsquo;s office would have been aware of a number of the problems with Burrell&rsquo;s prosecution, including:</p>\n\n<ul>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That Oliver gave conflicting accounts of what he saw.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That investigators did not get testimony from the people Burrell said he was with.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That investigators did not seek the surveillance tape from the convenience store.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That no gun, fingerprint or DNA evidence incriminated Burrell.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That video shows an investigator offering cash for hearsay information.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That Williams and Tyson have said Burrell was not with them during the shooting.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>That investigators did not follow up after Williams identified a different man, Tyree Jackson, by name and in a photo lineup as the third person involved in the shooting.</p>\n\t</li>\n</ul>\n\n<p>The Hennepin County attorney&rsquo;s office <a href=\"https://drive.google.com/file/d/14V6bcEZ261eqaylU_8bkQ-Zhbf9we7PG/view?usp=sharing\">noted that</a> Klobuchar was &quot;not the trial attorney&quot; during the first trial and said the conviction at the second trial was obtained &quot;with no input from her.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>That doesn&rsquo;t necessarily clear her from responsibility, Guerrero said.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There were two lead attorneys who prosecuted the case, but obviously as their boss, she ultimately bears responsibility for the actions of her line prosecutors,&quot; Guerrero said.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What backlash is Klobuchar facing?</div>\n\n<p>In the weeks since the AP&rsquo;s investigation came out, Klobuchar has <a href=\"https://thehill.com/campaign-issues/480611-minneapolis-naacp-black-lives-matter-call-on-klobuchar-to-suspend-campaign\">faced calls</a> to suspend her presidential campaign from civil rights activists and community leaders in Minneapolis.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The president of the Minneapolis chapter of the NAACP <a href=\"https://www.kare11.com/video/news/local/raw-minneapolis-naacp-president-responds-to-ap-investigation-into-myon-burrell-case/89-51f0fbe7-ce3d-418c-94fe-07814ef1ec00?fbclid=IwAR1CwU7bw5HLH19mlYbF80QI8ca_zuMj5EOiLopLSF0hvPAMjr-O8HnuyIM\">said</a> Klobuchar has &quot;questions that need to be answered,&quot; while the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota <a href=\"https://www.aclu-mn.org/en/press-releases/aclu-minnesota-calls-immediate-investigation-case-against-myon-burrell-following\">called</a> Burrell&rsquo;s conviction &quot;a gross miscarriage of justice.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Media figures have also pressed Klobuchar on the issue. Before Todd prodded her in Las Vegas, former federal prosecutor Sunny Hostin, a co-host of ABC&rsquo;s &quot;The View,&quot; <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/11/us/politics/amy-klobuchar-the-view.html\">blasted</a> her office&rsquo;s prosecution of Burrell.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;I&rsquo;ve reviewed the facts of that case, and it is one of the most flawed investigations and prosecutions that I think I have ever seen,&quot; Hostin <a href=\"https://twitter.com/ABCPolitics/status/1227283422202269696?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1227283422202269696&amp;ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2020%2F02%2F11%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Famy-klobuchar-the-view.html\">said</a>.</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 5 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>Burrell&rsquo;s trial jury has spoken out, too. Joe McLean, the jury foreman for Burrell&rsquo;s first trial, <a href=\"https://apnews.com/fb9ea66561f533d6ada550904ac56885\">told the AP</a> he regrets voting to convict and feels &quot;that we were misled.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Paul Fedor, the last juror to decide on a guilty verdict, <a href=\"https://apnews.com/fb9ea66561f533d6ada550904ac56885\">told the AP</a> that he was bothered during the trial by the notion that Burrell, at 5&rsquo;3&quot; tall, could have visibly fired a gun over a 5-foot wall.</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-24T18:26:56-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "health-presidential-candidates-how-much-do-we-know",
            "personalities": [],
            "headline": "The health of presidential candidates: How much do we know?",
            "entry": "<p>Differences in health policy weren&rsquo;t the only bones presidential candidates had to pick recently. They also sparred over details of their personal health. And with the next debate and Super Tuesday primaries fast approaching, these skirmishes are likely to escalate.</p>\n\n<p>In the run-up to the Las Vegas Democratic presidential primary face-off, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders&rsquo; national press secretary, Briahna Joy Gray, told CNN that opponents are trying to use his October heart attack against him. Then she mistakenly claimed that Mike Bloomberg &quot;has suffered heart attacks in the past&quot; &mdash; a statement she quickly walked back after a Bloomberg adviser said in a tweet it was a &quot;<a href=\"https://www.axios.com/bernie-sanders-mike-bloomberg-heart-health-5edd90cd-4b40-42ee-9834-e65dfe54c3c5.html\">Trumpy lie</a>.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>He did not have a heart attack, Bloomberg&rsquo;s camp explained, trying to differentiate its candidate&rsquo;s health status. He had stents. The former New York mayor, according to the campaign, had coronary stents inserted two decades ago after a cardiac test indicated they might be useful.</p>\n\n<p>Feathers still ruffled, the two candidates went at it again on the debate stage.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;I think the one area, maybe, that Mayor Bloomberg and I share, you have two stents, as well,&quot; Sanders said to his rival onstage.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg responded, &quot;<a href=\"https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/full-transcript-ninth-democratic-debate-las-vegas-n1139546\">Twenty-five years ago</a>.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>It&rsquo;s not surprising, with the oldest crop ever of presidential candidates, that their vital signs are becoming a talking point.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;When it comes to politics, personal health is just one more issue to try and leverage,&quot; said Arthur Caplan, a professor of bioethics at NYU School of Medicine in New York City.</p>\n\n<p>That got us wondering how this information fits into the facts voters weigh. And in evaluating a candidate&rsquo;s long-term health or electability, does it really matter whether a patient got a stent as part of treatment for a heart attack, like Sanders, or for another reason, such as to relieve chest pain or following a cardiac stress test, like Bloomberg?</p>\n\n<p>&quot;In this day and age, with the way technology has advanced and the skill sets of the cardiologists, I would say they are practically the same. We expect good results for both,&quot; said Dr. Hadley Wilson, a practicing cardiologist in Charlotte, North Carolina, and a member of the American College of Cardiology&rsquo;s board of trustees.</p>\n\n<p>Stents are almost always used when a person is having a heart attack.</p>\n\n<p>Heart attacks can occur when plaque breaks off inside the blood vessels of the heart, causing a blockage. To open the blocked artery, physicians insert <a href=\"https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/what-is-stent\">stents</a>, which are small, wire-mesh tubes. Afterward, patients are treated with medications to reduce the risk of subsequent heart attacks.</p>\n\n<p>Back when Bloomberg got his, they were commonly used in nonemergency situations to prop open narrowing arteries, with the thought that might prevent a heart attack, said Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a cardiologist in New York and a spokesperson for the American Heart Association.</p>\n\n<p>But, since then, &quot;we learned stents don&rsquo;t prevent a heart attack and that using medication might be equally beneficial,&quot; Steinbaum said, adding that the best preventive measures are lifestyle choices, such as eating a good diet, exercising and not smoking. Patients still sometimes get stents to alleviate symptoms, such as chest pain, or for other reasons.</p>\n\n<p>The Las Vegas debate also highlighted the broader question: Just how much of a candidate&rsquo;s medical history is fair game for public consumption?</p>\n\n<p>Sanders, who faced criticism in October for delays in reporting his condition, said he has since released &quot;the <a href=\"https://apnews.com/019b6618cb74063df43c40d95765c2fc\">full report</a> of that heart attack&quot; ― including letters from his primary care doctor and two cardiologists attesting to his overall health and recovery.</p>\n\n<p>But candidate Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, said Sanders had not provided enough detail ― and neither, he said, had the others.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Under President Obama, the standard was that the president would release full medical records, do a physical and release the readout,&quot; he said during the debate. &quot;Now, President Trump lowered that standard. He said just a letter from a doctor is enough. And a lot of folks on this stage are now saying that&rsquo;s enough.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Buttigieg himself has yet to provide a full medical record.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;But I am certainly prepared to get a physical, put out the results,&quot; he said during the debate. &quot;I think everybody here should be willing to do the same.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Some observers agree there&rsquo;s no such thing as TMI (too much information) when it comes to POTUS (the president of the United States).</p>\n\n<p>&quot;When the country is hiring someone to have their finger on the nuclear button, the expectation of personal privacy is very, very limited,&quot; said David Blumenthal, head of the Commonwealth Fund and co-author of &quot;The Heart of Power: Health and Politics in the Oval Office.&quot; &quot;It&rsquo;s hard to imagine something [health-related] that would not be relevant.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>That argument, though, doesn&rsquo;t always hold up.</p>\n\n<p>When he ran for president in 2008, the then-70-year-old Sen. John McCain released more than 1,000 pages of his medical records.</p>\n\n<p>By contrast, the campaigning Donald Trump initially released a glowing letter from his personal physician that concluded he would be &quot;the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency.&quot; After criticism that the letter lacked specifics, Trump added information on his height, weight and cholesterol levels and went on to become the <a href=\"https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2019/04/24/biden-sanders-age-buttigieg-trump-2020-presidential-election-us-presidents/3562801002/\">oldest president</a>, at age 70, to take office, beating out Ronald Reagan, who was just weeks shy of that milestone on Inauguration Day in 1981.</p>\n\n<p>This year, candidates Bloomberg and Sanders are both 78; former Vice President Joe Biden, 77; and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, 70. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is 59, and Buttigieg is the youngest, at 38.</p>\n\n<p>Anything that might be &quot;relevant to a candidate&rsquo;s ability and competence to govern and their longevity of service&quot; should be disclosed, said Blumenthal, who is also a medical doctor.</p>\n\n<p>Voters could then decide what they thought was important. The information might also affect how voters view the choice of a vice president, especially if the candidate for the highest office had a serious illness or something else that might limit their term, he said.</p>\n\n<p>Specifically which records, though, and how to release them is a complicated issue.</p>\n\n<p>Caplan, at NYU, has long advocated setting up a special independent medical panel to evaluate presidential candidates&rsquo; health ― and make their findings public.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;It would be like an executive physical, which is what a lot of companies do before they pick a CEO,&quot; he said.</p>\n\n<p>And deciding what to test for would be, in itself, complicated. Without a special panel ― which, even Caplan admits, would meet political inertia ― the challenges would be numerous. Even locating all the necessary records would be difficult.</p>\n\n<p>The candidates &quot;may have moved around the country, their doctors may have died, or records may not be available,&quot; noted Lawrence Altman, who covered many presidential elections as a reporter for The New York Times and is now a global scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.</p>\n\n<p>While there is no specific requirement that candidates release any information at all, what readers ― and voters ― want to know varies widely.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;It depends on their interest in the candidate,&quot; Altman said. &quot;A lot of people superimpose their political choices or feelings on the medical aspect. They are willing to dismiss something if they really like the candidate or make a big issue about it if they don&rsquo;t like the candidate.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&nbsp;</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-24T15:53:05-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "what-we-know-about-mike-bloomberg-and-his-non-disc",
            "personalities": [
                {
                    "slug": "michael-bloomberg",
                    "full_name": "Michael Bloomberg",
                    "first_name": "Michael",
                    "last_name": "Bloomberg"
                },
                {
                    "slug": "elizabeth-warren",
                    "full_name": "Elizabeth Warren",
                    "first_name": "Elizabeth",
                    "last_name": "Warren"
                }
            ],
            "headline": "What we know about Mike Bloomberg and nondisclosure agreements",
            "entry": "<p>U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren stood next to Mike Bloomberg on the debate stage in Las Vegas. It made her pointed questioning of him on whether his workplace was hostile for women all the more intense.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;The mayor has to stand on his record. And what we need to know is exactly what&#39;s lurking out there,&quot; Warren said. &quot;He has gotten some number of women, dozens, who knows, to sign nondisclosure agreements both for sexual harassment and for gender discrimination in the workplace.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;So, Mr. Mayor,&quot; Warren continued, &quot;are you willing to release all of those women from those nondisclosure agreements, so we can hear their side of the story?&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg did not give in as the pair went back and forth on the issue.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;I&#39;ve said we&#39;re not going to end these agreements because they were made consensually, and they have every right to expect that they will stay private,&quot; Bloomberg said during the Feb. 19 Democratic presidential primary debate.</p>\n\n<p>Nondisclosure agreements, commonly called NDAs, are legally binding contracts that prevent parties from disclosing information. PolitiFact is not privy to those agreements, so we don&rsquo;t know exactly what they detail. Still, we wanted to give readers an overview of the allegations made against Bloomberg and his company, Bloomberg L.P., based on available news reports.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\"><strong>What Bloomberg said about the nature of the NDAs</strong></div>\n\n<p>Bloomberg said there were &quot;very few&quot; NDAs and that they involved things he said, and not things he did.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;None of them accuse me of doing anything, other than maybe they didn&#39;t like a joke I told,&quot; Bloomberg said.</p>\n\n<p>He suggested that his reluctance to end the NDAs was based on what other parties preferred. &quot;The company and somebody else, in this case &mdash; a man or a woman, or it could be more than that &mdash; they decided when they made an agreement they wanted to keep it quiet for everybody&#39;s interests,&quot; Bloomberg said.</p>\n\n<div>&quot;There are no NDAs in which Mike is a party, only the company and individuals,&quot; Natalie Harland, a spokeswoman for Bloomberg L.P., told PolitiFact Feb. 21.</div>\n\n<div>&nbsp;</div>\n\n<div>Harland said no one has approached the company asking to be released from the NDAs.</div>\n\n<div>&nbsp;</div>\n\n<div>Bloomberg on Feb. 21 <a href=\"https://twitter.com/MikeBloomberg/status/1230959194825797632\">tweeted</a> that his company had identified three NDAs &quot;signed over the past 30+ years with women to address complaints about comments they said I had made.&quot; Bloomberg said that if any of them wanted to be released from their NDAs, they should reach out to the company.</div>\n\n<div>&nbsp;</div>\n\n<div>Bloomberg&#39;s tweet linked to a <a href=\"https://www.mikebloomberg.com/news/statement-from-mike-bloomberg-on-non-disclosure-agreements?utm_source=twitter&amp;utm_medium=social&amp;utm_campaign=&amp;utm_content=\">statement</a> posted to his campaign website.</div>\n\n<div>\n<p>&quot;I&rsquo;ve done a lot of reflecting on this issue over the past few days and I&rsquo;ve decided that for as long as I&rsquo;m running the company, we won&rsquo;t offer confidentiality agreements to resolve claims of sexual harassment or misconduct going forward,&quot; Bloomberg&#39;s statement said.</p>\n\n<p>He added: &quot;I recognize that NDAs, particularly when they are used in the context of sexual harassment and sexual assault, promote a culture of silence in the workplace and contribute to a culture of women not feeling safe or supported. It is imperative that when problems occur, workplaces not only address the specific incidents, but the culture and practices that led to those incidents. And then leaders must act.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg also said he asked his company to consult with experts to review and reform policies &quot;where necessary with regard to equal pay and promotion, sexual harassment and discrimination, and other legal tools that prevent culture change.&quot;</p>\n</div>\n\n<p><strong><em>RELATED</em>: </strong><a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2019/dec/03/who-michael-bloomberg-bio-democratic-presidential-/\">Who is Michael Bloomberg? A bio of the Democratic presidential candidate</a></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\"><strong>News reports on accusations against Bloomberg and his company</strong></div>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/bloomberg-digs-doesnt-female-employees-freed-ndas/story?id=68307778\">ABC News</a> in January reported that the news organization reviewed court records showing that at least 17 women had taken legal action against Bloomberg&rsquo;s company over the past 30 years.</p>\n\n<p>Several lawsuits contend that Bloomberg fostered a hostile workplace for women in the 1990s, and three cases specifically claimed that Bloomberg made lewd remarks, such as &quot;I&#39;d like to do that piece of meat,&quot; and &quot;I would do you in a second,&quot; ABC News reported.</p>\n\n<p>Three active cases involve alleged misconduct between 2012 and 2016, and Bloomberg is a named defendant in two of those cases. One of those two cases involves a woman who accused her manager of sexual assault (the manager was fired before the lawsuit&rsquo;s filing), and the other involves a former sales executive who accused the company of age and gender discrimination, according to ABC News. The third case is about a woman accusing the company of wrongful termination. Bloomberg and his company denied those allegations.</p>\n\n<p>During a Jan. 15 appearance on &quot;The View,&quot; Bloomberg said he had nothing to hide and that the nondisclosure agreements had to be respected.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Did I ever tell a bawdy joke? Yeah, sure I did. Do I regret it? Yes, it&#39;s embarrassing,&quot; Bloomberg said. &quot;But, you know, that&#39;s the way I grew up.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>The Washington Post on Feb. 15 <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/politics/michael-bloomberg-women/\">outlined</a> an unspecified number of lawsuits against Bloomberg and his company filed over the years alleging discrimination against women.</p>\n\n<p>The cases the Post reviewed did not involve accusations of inappropriate sexual conduct, but were about things Bloomberg said and the workplace culture he created. The story said Bloomberg was blamed for &quot;creating a culture of sexual harassment and degradation.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>The Post also told of a present Bloomberg got for his 48th birthday in 1990: a <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/context/the-portable-bloomberg-the-wit-wisdom-of-michael-bloomberg/ba5281b4-886d-42dc-a28d-e67eceb60719/\">booklet</a> titled &quot;The Portable Bloomberg: The Wit &amp; Wisdom of Michael Bloomberg.&quot; It included sexist quotes attributed to Bloomberg.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg&#39;s spokesman told the Post both that Bloomberg &quot;simply did not say the things somebody wrote in this gag gift&quot; and that Bloomberg &quot;openly admits that his words have not always aligned with his values and the way he has led his life and some of what he has said is disrespectful and wrong.&quot;</p>\n\n<p><strong><em>RELATED</em>: </strong><a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/feb/20/fact-checking-las-vegas-democratic-debate-bloomber/\">Bloomberg on the defensive, fact-checking the Las Vegas Democratic debate</a></p>\n\n<p><em><strong>RELATED</strong>: </em><a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/feb/14/stump-speech-analyzer-michael-bloomberg/\">The Stump Speech Analyzer: Michael Bloomberg</a></p>\n\n<p><em>This story was updated Feb. 21 at 4:19 p.m. to include a statement and tweet posted by Bloomberg after our story published.</em></p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-21T14:42:29-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "fastest-growing-and-fastest-declining-jobs-us",
            "personalities": [],
            "headline": "The fastest-growing, and fastest-declining, jobs in the US",
            "entry": "<p>What are the fastest-growing &mdash; and fastest-declining &mdash; jobs in the United States?</p>\n\n<p>According to federal data, there&rsquo;s plenty of upside for solar panel installers, but times could be tough for parking attendants and watch repairers.</p>\n\n<p>We looked at the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics <a href=\"https://www.bls.gov/ooh/about/ooh-faqs.htm\">projections</a>, which are federal economists&rsquo; best guesses at which jobs will be expanding and contracting between 2018 and 2028. Several academic and industry economists say the BLS projections are the best data source available.</p>\n\n<p>The aging of the Baby Boom generation is producing a need for workers in health care and long-term care. Roughly half of the 20 <a href=\"https://www.bls.gov/ooh/fastest-growing.htm\">fastest-growing jobs</a> fall into one of these two categories.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Growth in health care jobs is a safe bet since the aging population is a near-certainty,&quot; said Jed Kolko, the chief economist for the jobs site Indeed.com.</p>\n\n<p>Renewable energy &mdash; notably solar and wind power &mdash; is also poised to expand significantly.</p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<p>&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>But as renewable energy jobs expand, jobs in coal mining will continue to decline. Coal mining jobs have <a href=\"https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/CES1021210001\">declined by 71%</a> from their 1985 peak.</p>\n\n<p>Another trend from the 20 <a href=\"https://www.bls.gov/emp/tables/fastest-declining-occupations.htm\">fastest-shrinking jobs</a>: The march of technology continues. Jobs in legacy sectors &mdash; such as telephones, mail and non-digital photography &mdash; are all projected to shrink through 2028. And continuing automation in manufacturing is poised to decrease the number of workers in aircraft and vehicle assembly.</p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 2 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<p>&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The projections show that there will be continued demand for internet and quantitative skills, in such sectors as cybersecurity, statistics and software development.</p>\n\n<p>And climate change is expected to have an effect by increasing the demand for forest fire inspectors and prevention specialists.</p>\n\n<p>Economists caution that percentage increases such as those on the two lists above don&rsquo;t tell the whole story. Some of the jobs on these lists will see a large percentage increase from a small initial number. More modest increases (or decreases) in jobs that start with a lot of workers can make a bigger difference on the job pool as a whole.</p>\n\n<p>BLS offers an <a href=\"https://www.bls.gov/emp/tables/occupations-most-job-growth.htm\">additional statistic</a> that addresses this question, tracking the largest projected increases in the number of jobs, rather than the highest percentage increases.</p>\n\n<p>There is some overlap between these two lists, other jobs will see large numerical increases even though they don&rsquo;t crack the list of percentage increases.</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Food service workers (including general workers, cooks, and first-line supervisors)</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Janitors</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Landscaping and groundskeepers</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Construction laborers</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Truck drivers</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Carpenters and electricians</p>\n\n<p>&bull; Market research analysts and marketing specialists</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What about pay?</div>\n\n<p>Also important for gauging the economic implications are the income prospects in the growing and shrinking sectors.</p>\n\n<p>On the whole, the top 20 jobs for growth have a higher average wage ($61,818) than do the 20 jobs that are shrinking the fastest ($43,115).</p>\n\n<p>That said, lower-paying medical jobs are mainstays of the &quot;gaining&quot; list, especially in health and personal care. Some of these jobs are paid even less than the average for shrinking jobs.</p>\n\n<p>According to Indeed.com, middle-wage jobs are growing more slowly than either higher- or lower-wage jobs, and that jobs requiring higher and lower levels of education were growing faster than jobs for people with a high school degree only.</p>\n\n<p><img src=\"https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/mj_m51XLE9n6kFWwVbnY1eg92-X0epdPVk19LWTVLK5AEu_fMrAr6zJuDlmv0lzP2KXvhS8e2XCdNPRC7LO9PJHh31GthpV3LX93yPGf-ohZFZHiR8OpuiTS29A3k0tNjroE6ImT\"></p>\n\n<p>Indeed also found that BLS employment projections favor urban areas, with rural areas growing the most slowly and suburban areas in the middle.</p>\n\n<p><img src=\"https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/M4TBxIak58SrGvS5AJHaPvaqUJnRWOBRdhcEmM2i7XZxFfFykQit4zbCfgV_nyzUs4S11iRfYlitzL3yw7fpKUarLeV4zvwWVD3MFlw7zZycrE-qloxRqF6YGqfHxhTKIu01jzBT\"></p>\n\n<p>A final caveat: Some occupations include a lot of older workers, many of whom would be expected to retire during the next five to 10 years, said Brookings Institution economist Gary Burtless. Taking these retiring workers into account &mdash; which the data above does not do &mdash; it&rsquo;s possible that some shrinking industries could still end up hiring new workers, and that some growing industries may ultimately hire at an even faster clip than the basic projections indicate.</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-21T12:08:29-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "fact-checking-las-vegas-democratic-debate-bloomber",
            "personalities": [],
            "headline": "Bloomberg on the defensive, fact-checking the Las Vegas Democratic debate",
            "entry": "<p>After saying he wouldn&rsquo;t run and then changing his mind, after altogether skipping Iowa and New Hampshire, after spending <a href=\"https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/10/bloomberg-ad-spending-spree-is-a-bonanza-for-local-broadcasters.html\">$250 million of his fortune on television and radio</a> ads, Mike Bloomberg stood at the end of a debate stage in Las Vegas days before Democrats vote there and got battered by his five opponents.</p>\n\n<p>The talk was a bit different than the &quot;Mike will get it done&quot; line you might have heard on TV.</p>\n\n<ul>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>&quot;A billionaire who calls women &lsquo;fat broads&rsquo; and &lsquo;horse-faced lesbians&rsquo; &mdash; and no, I&rsquo;m not talking about Donald Trump. I&rsquo;m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>&quot;From the moment we passed that signature legislation (Obamacare), Mike called it a disgrace.&quot; &mdash; former Vice President Joe Biden</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>&quot;Our party has a tradition that includes excellent presidents like Barack Obama who Mayor Bloomberg opposed.&quot; &mdash; former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg</p>\n\t</li>\n\t<li>\n\t<p>&quot;Mayor Bloomberg was busy blaming blacks and Latinos for the housing crisis.&quot; &mdash; Warren</p>\n\t</li>\n</ul>\n\n<p>PolitiFact&rsquo;s team of fact-checkers examined the veracity of each of those attacks, as well misleading or incomplete claims about the candidate&rsquo;s health care plans, Bloomberg&rsquo;s defense of New York&rsquo;s stop-and-frisk policy, and the donors of the candidates&rsquo; campaigns.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;A billionaire who calls women &lsquo;fat broads&rsquo; and &lsquo;horse-faced lesbians&rsquo; &mdash; and no, I&rsquo;m not talking about Donald Trump. I&rsquo;m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.</div>\n\n<p>These descriptions came from a booklet distributed in 1990 as part of Bloomberg&rsquo;s 48th birthday, and were reported as words said by Bloomberg.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Images of every page have been posted by the <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/context/the-portable-bloomberg-the-wit-wisdom-of-michael-bloomberg/ba5281b4-886d-42dc-a28d-e67eceb60719/\">Washington Post</a>. According to the <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/politics/michael-bloomberg-women/?itid=hp_hp-top-table-main_bloomberg-9a%3Ahomepage%2Fstory-ans\">Washington Post</a>, the booklet was produced by Elisabeth DeMarse, Bloomberg L.P.&rsquo;s former chief marketing officer. She wrote in the introduction, &quot;Yes, these are all actual quotes. No, nothing has been embellished or exaggerated. And yes, some things were too outrageous to include.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>In the booklet, the remark is described as referring to members of the British royal family. In full, the quotation reads, &quot;The Royal family &mdash; what a bunch of misfits &mdash; a gay, an architect, that horsey faced lesbian, and a kid who gave up Koo Stark for some fat broad.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>The Guardian, the British newspaper, <a href=\"https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/feb/15/michael-bloomberg-booklet-sexist-remarks-abortion\">translated</a> the identities of the royals cited in the quotation as being, in order, Prince Edward, Prince Charles, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew. (We had to refresh our memory on who Koo Stark was. She is an <a href=\"https://www.msn.com/en-au/lifestyle/lifestyleroyals/when-prince-andrew-met-koo-stark-his-most-scandalous-girlfriend/ar-BBYCkit\">American actress and photographer who once dated Prince Andrew</a>.)</p>\n\n<p>So it&rsquo;s clear that the quotation appeared in the booklet.</p>\n\n<p>Despite what&rsquo;s written in the introduction, Bloomberg and his spokespersons have disputed that he actually said that quote, though with somewhat evolving explanations over time.</p>\n\n<p>Neither the Bloomberg campaign nor the Warren campaign responded to PolitiFact on debate night. However, Bloomberg spokesman Stu Loeser told the Post that &quot;Mike simply did not say the things somebody wrote in this gag gift, which has been circulating for 30 years and has been quoted in every previous election Mike has been in.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>He added, &quot;Mike openly admits that his words have not always aligned with his values and the way he has led his life, and some of what he has said is disrespectful and wrong.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>The Post also reported that a Bloomberg spokesman had said in 2001 that Bloomberg apologized to &quot;anyone that was offended by&quot; the comments, which Bloomberg himself once referred to as &quot;a bunch of Borscht Belt jokes.&quot;</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Louis Jacobson</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;From the moment we passed that signature legislation (Obamacare), Mike called it a disgrace.&quot; &mdash; former Vice President Joe Biden</div>\n\n<p>Bloomberg said exactly that in a speech at Dartmouth College a few months after the Affordable Care Act passed in March 2010. This claim rates <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/feb/20/joe-biden/obamacare-disgrace-biden-highlights-bloombergs-neg/\">True</a>.</p>\n\n<p>In a video of the speech we reviewed, Bloomberg was unsparing. &quot;We passed a health care bill that does absolutely nothing to fix the big health care problems in this country. It is just a disgrace,&quot; he said. &quot;The president, in all fairness, started out by pointing out what the big problems were, but then turned it over to Congress, which didn&#39;t pay any attention to any of those big problems and just created another program that&#39;s going to cost a lot of money.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Those aren&rsquo;t standalone remarks. As recently as 2014, Bloomberg called the law <a href=\"https://money.cnn.com/2014/11/10/investing/bloomberg-financial-regulation-obamacare/index.html\">&quot;really dysfunctional&quot;</a> during remarks to a financial industry trade group.</p>\n\n<p>It is worth noting that Bloomberg&rsquo;s <a href=\"https://www.mikebloomberg.com/policies/health-coverage-plan\">current health care plan</a> would build on the Affordable Care Act, largely by increasing subsidies for people buying private insurance on the exchanges, and by installing a Medicare-like public option.</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Victoria Knight and Shefali Luthra, Kaiser Health News</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;Our party has a tradition that includes excellent presidents like Barack Obama who Mayor Bloomberg opposed.&quot; &mdash; former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg</div>\n\n<p>You might not know it from watching Bloomberg&rsquo;s ads, but Bloomberg did not endorse Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign. Bloomberg, who was registered as an Independent at the time, did not endorse Obama or Republican John McCain in that race.</p>\n\n<p>In a July 2008 <a href=\"https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/288-08/mayor-bloomberg-proposes-taxpayers-stop-paying-political-party-primaries-address-the\">speech</a> to the Independence Party Of Minnesota, Bloomberg said that both Obama and McCain had shown &quot;on at least some issues, that they are capable of thinking and acting independently of the special interests.&quot; Bloomberg said both candidates needed to state where they stood on issues and how they&rsquo;d get them through Congress.</p>\n\n<p>He said this of Obama: &quot;Sen. Obama &mdash; whether you support him or not &mdash; has shown a willingness, I think it&#39;s fair to say, to stand up to the ideological police on some important issues, such as ending the gun show loophole which puts guns in the hands of criminals, and he is- willing to stand up and say we should maintain the federal gasoline tax during the summer when there was a cry to reduce it.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg did <a href=\"https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2012-11-01/a-vote-for-a-president-to-lead-on-climate-change\">endorse Obama&rsquo;s re-election</a> in 2012, but not until a week before the election. And the endorsement included criticism. Bloomberg said Obama failed to develop and sustain a coalition of centrists that could work on key issues, including immigration and tax reform. <a href=\"https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/bloomberg-obama-more-complicated-relationship-ads-suggest-n1138366\">Bloomberg also said Obama</a> &quot;engaged in partisan attacks&quot; and &quot;embraced a divisive populist agenda focused more on redistributing income than creating it.&quot;</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash;&nbsp;Miriam Valverde</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<p><em>Associated Press</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;Mayor Bloomberg was busy blaming African Americans and Latinos for the housing crisis in 2008.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.</div>\n\n<p>This rates <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/feb/20/elizabeth-warren/mike-bloombergs-redlining-remarks-distorted-elizab/\">Mostly False</a>.</p>\n\n<p>The Warren campaign pointed to <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/13/us/politics/michael-bloomberg-redlining.html\">what Bloomberg said</a> at a forum in <a href=\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXhND01U734\">September 2008 at Georgetown University</a>. At various points in the hourlong <a href=\"https://www.c-span.org/video/?281174-1/urban-economics\">interview</a>, Bloomberg spoke broadly about loose lending as a factor in the financial crisis. Bloomberg identified pressure by Congress to expand lending after the ban on <a href=\"https://www.federalreserve.gov/boarddocs/supmanual/cch/fair_lend_fhact.pdf\">redlining</a> as one of those causes. The term &quot;redlining&quot; comes from when bankers would draw lines on maps indicating poorer neighborhoods where they would avoid offering mortgages. Those areas often include large minority populations.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg did not talk about the racial aspects of redlining or bring up any minority groups. He seemed to define redlining narrowly as excluding loan applicants in poor neighborhoods. And he described a system in which, by enacting a ban on redlining, Congress encouraged banks to give mortgages to people whether or not they could afford them.</p>\n\n<p>In the same interview, Bloomberg talked about how the mortgage crisis accelerated after mortgages were approved too easily for borrowers who didn&rsquo;t have the means to repay them.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There was pressure to open up the spigot and to sell mortgages to everyone,&quot; he said.</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Amy Sherman</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;When we discovered, I discovered, that we were doing many, many, too many stop and frisks, we cut 95% of it out.&quot; &mdash; former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg</div>\n\n<p>The number of stop-and-frisk searches ballooned 600% while Bloomberg was mayor. They later declined 95%. We rated Bloomberg&rsquo;s claim <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/feb/20/michael-bloomberg/fact-checking-mike-bloombergs-claim-95-decline-sto/\">Half True</a>.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg&rsquo;s campaign told PolitiFact his claim relied on data for the first quarter of 2012 and the last quarter of 2013. From January to March 2012, the New York Police Department recorded 203,500 stops, compared with approximately 12,500 stops from October to December 2013. That&rsquo;s close to a 95% drop.</p>\n\n<p>What happened in the years before that while Bloomberg was still mayor?</p>\n\n<p>The New York Civil Liberties Union compiled data using NYPD&rsquo;s annual reports and found that, in Bloomberg&rsquo;s first 10 years in office, stop and frisk numbers increased significantly. In 2002, there were 97,296 stops recorded &mdash; that <a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/press-releases/nyclu-analysis-reveals-nypd-street-stops-soar-600-over-course-bloomberg\">increased more than 600%</a> by 2011, when there were nearly<a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/stop-and-frisk-data\"> 686,000 stops</a>. Stops fell dramatically in 2013 to just under 192,000.</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Miriam Valverde</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 2 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<p><em>Associated Press</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;You don&#39;t start out by saying, I have 160 million people, I&#39;m going to take away the insurance plan that they love.&quot; &mdash; former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg</div>\n\n<p>It is true that Medicare for All, Sanders&rsquo; signature health proposal, would eliminate private health insurance, replacing it with a single public plan that covers everybody. That would include the roughly 160 million Americans who get employer-sponsored insurance</p>\n\n<p>But Bloomberg&rsquo;s argument that those people &quot;love&quot; their plans is complicated.</p>\n\n<p>When we previously checked a similar claim that 160 million people &quot;like their health insurance&quot; we rated it <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2019/nov/21/joe-biden/do-160-million-americans-like-their-health-insur/\">Half True</a>. Cursory polling suggests people with that coverage are mostly satisfied.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>But most isn&rsquo;t all. And once Americans try to use that coverage, many find it lacking. In a Kaiser Family Foundation/ Los Angeles Times poll, for instance, 40% of people with employer-sponsored insurance still reported having trouble paying for medical bills, premiums or out-of-pocket costs. In that same poll, about half said they skipped or delayed health care because, even with coverage, they couldn&rsquo;t afford it.</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Shefali Luthra, Kaiser Health News</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 3 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<p><em>Associated Press</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;Last year the health care industry made $100 billion in profits.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.</div>\n\n<p>This is <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/jan/15/bernie-sanders/sanders-medicare-all-plan-targets-health-industrys/\">True</a>. The number comes from adding the 2018 net revenues from 10 pharmaceutical companies and 10 health insurance companies. We redid the numbers and they added up. Experts said it was even likely that the figure was an underestimate.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Victoria Knight, Kaiser Health News</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;Amy, I looked online at your (health care) plan. It&rsquo;s two paragraphs.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.</div>\n\n<p>This is highly misleading.</p>\n\n<p>Warren&rsquo;s campaign told PolitiFact that she was referring specifically to Klobuchar&rsquo;s plan for &quot;universal health care.&quot; It pointed to the two paragraphs at the end of this Klobuchar campaign web page, which come under the heading &quot;Propose legislation to get us to universal health care.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>But that ignores most of Klobuchar&rsquo;s health care plan, which she outlines in quite a bit of detail on four different web pages &mdash; <a href=\"https://amyklobuchar.com/issue/health-care/\">a main health care policy page</a>, <a href=\"https://amyklobuchar.com/turning-ideas-into-action-senator-klobuchar-on-health-care-and-prescription-drugs/\">a more detailed sub-page</a>, <a href=\"https://amyklobuchar.com/turning-ideas-into-action-senator-klobuchar-on-health-care-and-prescription-drugs/\">a sub-page on prescription drugs</a> and <a href=\"https://medium.com/@AmyforAmerica/amys-plan-to-combat-addiction-and-prioritize-mental-health-b0207531c9ab\">a sub-page on mental health</a>.&nbsp;Klobuchar supports building on the Affordable Care Act and adding a public option that expands Medicare and Medicaid.</p>\n\n<p><em>&mdash; Louis Jacobson</em></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">&quot;Those CEOs are contributing to Pete&#39;s campaign and other campaigns up here.&quot; &mdash; Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.</div>\n\n<p>When discussing the profits of the pharmaceutical industry, Sanders also charged that drug companies are donating to Buttigieg and other campaigns. We previously fact-checked Sanders&rsquo; claim that Buttigieg was a &quot;favorite of the health care industry&quot; and rated it <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/feb/19/bernie-sanders/sanders-claim-buttigieg-favorite-health-care-indus/\">Half True</a>.</p>\n\n<p>This is in part because Sanders has received the most donations of any Democratic candidate from the entire health care sector, which includes the pharmaceutical industry, health insurance industry, hospitals/nursing homes and health professionals. But, while checking this claim we also found that Buttigieg has received donations from employees and executives of pharmaceutical and health insurance companies such as AbbVie, Aetna, Anthem, Eli Lilly and Co., Merck &amp; Co. and Pfizer.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><em>&nbsp;&mdash; Victoria Knight, Kaiser Health News</em></p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T21:54:41-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "live-fact-checking-las-vegas-democratic-presidenti",
            "personalities": [],
            "headline": "Live fact-checking the Democratic presidential debate in Las Vegas",
            "entry": "<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</div>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T20:18:22-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "mike-bloombergs-record-stop-and-frisk",
            "personalities": [
                {
                    "slug": "michael-bloomberg",
                    "full_name": "Michael Bloomberg",
                    "first_name": "Michael",
                    "last_name": "Bloomberg"
                }
            ],
            "headline": "Mike Bloomberg’s record on stop and frisk",
            "entry": "<p>Mike Bloomberg&rsquo;s rise as a presidential contender has pushed one controversial New York policy to the forefront of attacks in the Democratic primary: stop and frisk.</p>\n\n<p>The practice allowed police to stop, question and frisk any person they believed was involved in criminal activity or in possession of a weapon. It expanded in New York under Mayor Rudy Giuliani in the 1990s, and Bloomberg continued the policy during his three terms as mayor.</p>\n\n<p>Data shows that police disproportionately targeted African Americans and Latinos. <a href=\"https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/750446/stop-and-frisk-memoranda.pdf\">A federal judge in 2013 ruled</a> that the New York Police Department&rsquo;s stop-and-frisk tactics violated the constitutional rights of minorities in the city.</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://www.mikebloomberg.com/news/statement-from-mike-bloomberg\">Bloomberg</a> has defended himself as other Democrats and <a href=\"https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/02/11/nation/trump-posts-deletes-tweet-calling-bloomberg-racist-over-stop-frisk-policy-he-has-endorsed/\">President Donald Trump</a> have bashed the tactic as racist and unconstitutional. Bloomberg says he &quot;inherited&quot; the stop-and-frisk policy and that he &quot;cut it back by 95%&quot; by the time he left office.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg&rsquo;s messaging ignores his role in expanding the practice and the <a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/publications/stop-and-frisk-during-bloomberg-administration-2002-2013-2014\">dramatic</a> <a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/publications/stop-and-frisk-during-bloomberg-administration-2002-2013-2014\">increases</a> in stops during most of his tenure. He also omits that the decline in his last years as mayor came amid public outcry about the policy and an impending lawsuit.</p>\n\n<p>We put together this guide for understanding Bloomberg&rsquo;s defenses on the policy, as well as the attacks.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\"><strong>Bloomberg as mayor embraced, expanded stop and frisk</strong></div>\n\n<p>Like Bloomberg has said, he did not start the policy of stop, question and frisk.</p>\n\n<p>The term was created in 1964, when New York City <a href=\"https://www.jstor.org/stable/1339108?seq=1\">passed a law</a> allowing police to stop, interrogate and frisk any person based on a reasonable suspicion that they were involved in a crime. This was further supported in the Supreme Court&#39;s 1968 decision in <a href=\"https://www.ncjrs.gov/App/Publications/abstract.aspx?ID=78657\">Terry vs. Ohio, </a>upholding the law.</p>\n\n<p>But Bloomberg obscures his consistent <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/19/us/politics/michael-bloomberg-stop-and-frisk.html\">support</a> of the policy during his time in office and for years after.</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://gothamist.com/news/testy-bloomberg-blames-press-for-stop-and-frisk-controversy\">In May 2012</a>, toward the end of his 12 years in office, Bloomberg dismissed critics of the practice as a vocal minority.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;My understanding is that the polls show overwhelming support by the public for the tactics we&rsquo;ve been using to bring down crime,&quot; he said. &quot;I think you&rsquo;d find that it&rsquo;s a minority of people who don&rsquo;t like the tactic.<em> </em>We are very careful to follow the law. We go where the crime is.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg also suggested that the policy saved thousands of lives and that he would not apologize.</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/151-13/mayor-bloomberg-delivers-address-public-safety-nypd-leadership\">In April 2013</a>, Bloomberg rebuked criticism that stop and frisk targeted people based on their race or ethnicity. He called it a &quot;common sense&quot; policing tactic that helped get guns off the streets.</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/08/26/after-bloomberg\">In July 2013</a>, Bloomberg told the New Yorker: &quot;I would suggest to the next mayor, whoever it is, that saving lives is the most important thing, more so than pandering. Stop-and-frisk has been shown to be&mdash;not the only, but the most effective tool in getting guns out of the hands of kids.&quot;</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/275-13/statements-mayor-bloomberg-commissioner-kelly-federal-court-ruling\">In August 2013</a>, after a <a href=\"https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/750446/stop-and-frisk-memoranda.pdf\">federal judge ruled</a> that the NYPD engaged in unconstitutional behavior under the policy, Bloomberg claimed the judge &quot;ignored the real-world realities of crime&quot; and that the city did not get a fair trial. &quot;You&rsquo;re not going to see any change in tactics overnight,&quot; he <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/13/nyregion/stop-and-frisk-practice-violated-rights-judge-rules.html\">told the New York Times</a>.</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg has defended it in <a href=\"https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-news/michael-bloomberg-isnt-afraid-of-the-nra-83455/\">one way</a> or <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/11/us/politics/bloomberg-stop-and-frisk.html\">another</a> over the years and was still backing the policy in <a href=\"https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/22/politics/bloomberg-stop-and-frisk/index.html\">January 2019</a>, saying it led to a decline in New York Cirty&rsquo;s murder rate. (Those numbers have <a href=\"https://eji.org/news/new-york-crime-falls-as-police-end-stop-and-frisk/\">continued to drop</a> even as the practice diminished.)</p>\n\n<p>We reached out to Bloomberg&rsquo;s campaign but did not hear back.</p>\n\n<p>He publicly renounced the policy for the first time a week before launching his presidential campaign in November 2019.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Over time, I&rsquo;ve come to understand something that I long struggled to admit to myself: I got something important wrong. I got something important really wrong,&quot; <a href=\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_wj8hTM15I&amp;feature=youtu.be&amp;t=500\">Bloomberg said</a> Nov. 17 at a church in Brooklyn.</p>\n\n<p>He added: &quot;I didn&rsquo;t understand that back then the full impact that stops were having on the black and Latino communities ... I now see that we could and should have acted sooner and acted faster to cut the stops. I wish we had. I&rsquo;m sorry that we didn&rsquo;t. But, I can&rsquo;t change history. However, today, I want you to know that I realize back then I was wrong, and I&rsquo;m sorry.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>He apologized again on Feb. 11, 2020, after <a href=\"https://www.essence.com/news/bloomberg-campaign-stop-frisk-audio-apologizes/\">audio surfaced</a> from 2015 where Bloomberg can be heard saying one method to seize guns from male minorities is to &quot;throw them up against the wall and frisk them.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Bloomberg said in a <a href=\"https://www.mikebloomberg.com/news/statement-from-mike-bloomberg\">statement</a> that he should have ended the policy faster and sooner. &quot;I regret that and I have apologized &mdash; and I have taken responsibility for taking too long to understand the impact it had on Black and Latino communities.&quot;</p>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</div>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\"><em>In this June 17, 2012 photo, Rev. Al Sharpton, center, walks with thousands along Fifth Avenue, during a silent march to end the &quot;stop-and-frisk&quot; program in New York. (AP/Seth Wenig)</em></div>\n\n<div class=\"artembed\">&nbsp;</div>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\"><strong>Stop-and-frisk data shows spike during Bloomberg&rsquo;s tenure</strong></div>\n\n<p>Bloomberg as a presidential candidate has tried to downplay his enforcement of the policy. His <a href=\"http://web.archive.org/web/20200219210427/https://www.mikebloomberg.com/news/statement-from-mike-bloomberg\">campaign website said</a> stops fell by 95% by the time he left office.</p>\n\n<p>That defense ignores the upswing in stops while he was mayor.</p>\n\n<p>The New York Civil Liberties Union compiled data using NYPD&rsquo;s annual reports and found that, in Bloomberg&rsquo;s first 10 years in office, stop-and-frisk numbers <a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/press-releases/nyclu-analysis-reveals-nypd-street-stops-soar-600-over-course-bloomberg\">increased by 600%,</a> reaching a peak of nearly <a href=\"https://www.nyclu.org/en/stop-and-frisk-data\">686,000 stops in 2011</a>. Stops fell dramatically in 2013 to nearly 192,000.</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/09/21/it-looks-like-rudy-giuliani-convinced-donald-trump-that-stop-and-frisk-actually-works/\">Some data</a> also show that stop and frisk may not have had a significant impact, as crime was beginning to drop in New York before the policy was implemented. It <a href=\"https://eji.org/news/new-york-crime-falls-as-police-end-stop-and-frisk/\">continued to decline</a> after the practice dwindled.</p>\n\n<p>An <a href=\"https://crim.sas.upenn.edu/fact-check/does-stop-and-frisk-reduce-crime\">analysis</a> by the University of Pennsylvania&rsquo;s Criminology Department found that deploying more police officers to high-crime areas in New York reduced crime by as much as 15%, but the additional use of stop and frisk &quot;made almost no difference.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;The stops only had a detectable impact on crime when the stops were based on probable cause, and these kinds of stops were very rare,&quot; the report said.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\"><strong>Is stop and frisk unconstitutional?</strong></div>\n\n<p>Other candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination are calling out Bloomberg for his handling of stop and frisk, calling the policy <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/17/us/politics/nevada-bloomberg-sanders-biden-trump.html\">racist</a> and <a href=\"https://twitter.com/TPMLiveWire/status/1229165974303236099\">unconstitutional</a>.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;As for what Michael Bloomberg did &mdash; stop and frisk &mdash; that is unconstitutional,&quot; Sen. Amy Klobuchar <a href=\"https://www.cbsnews.com/news/transcript-amy-klobuchar-on-face-the-nation-february-16-2020/\">said</a> on &quot;Face the Nation&quot; Feb. 16.</p>\n\n<p>There&rsquo;s more nuance needed for Klobuchar&rsquo;s broad label.</p>\n\n<p>A federal judge in 2013 found that the way the NYPD was carrying out its policy was unconstitutional, but the judge didn&rsquo;t say that stop and frisk as a general policy was unconstitutional.</p>\n\n<p>Judge Shira Scheindlin <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2016/sep/28/donald-trump/debate-donald-trump-says-stop-and-frisk-constituti/\">found</a> the city had been conducting unconstitutional stops and frisks on two grounds: Officers were stopping and frisking people without reasonable suspicion, in violation of a 1968 Supreme Court case, <em>Terry vs. Ohio</em>,<em> </em>and the Fourth Amendment; and a disproportionate number of those stopped and frisked were minorities, in violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.</p>\n\n<p>PolitiFact looked into the constitutionality of the stop-and-frisk policy back in 2016, when then-candidate Donald Trump defended it during a presidential debate. Trump&rsquo;s defense of the policy back then put him in line with Bloomberg&rsquo;s past position. We rated that Trump claim <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2016/sep/28/donald-trump/debate-donald-trump-says-stop-and-frisk-constituti/\">Mostly False</a>.</p>\n\n<p>In the ruling, Scheindlin <a href=\"https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/750446/stop-and-frisk-memoranda.pdf\">wrote</a> that the NYPD engaged in &quot;indirect racial profiling,&quot; leading officers to routinely stop &quot;blacks and Hispanics who would not have been stopped if they were white.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Scheindlin said the NYPD could do stops and frisks as long as it made some changes to its practices. Stop and frisk continues in New York City, though it has largely diminished.</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T16:45:18-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "trump-attack-former-stone-prosecutors-ignores-crit",
            "personalities": [
                {
                    "slug": "william-barr",
                    "full_name": "William Barr",
                    "first_name": "William",
                    "last_name": "Barr"
                },
                {
                    "slug": "roger-stone",
                    "full_name": "Roger Stone",
                    "first_name": "Roger",
                    "last_name": "Stone"
                },
                {
                    "slug": "donald-trump",
                    "full_name": "Donald Trump",
                    "first_name": "Donald",
                    "last_name": "Trump"
                }
            ],
            "headline": "Trump attack on former Stone prosecutors ignores critical facts",
            "entry": "<p>President Donald Trump has been tweeting zealously about the trial of longtime friend Roger Stone, who was convicted of several charges and is scheduled for sentencing Feb. 20.</p>\n\n<p>The president has&nbsp;<a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227122206783811585\">condemned</a> <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227109357726445568\">Stone&rsquo;s situation</a>, <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1229752039040782336\">called for</a> <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1229756038469079040\">a new trial</a>, <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227939838751657984\">accused a juror of bias</a>, <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227408775855976449\">blasted the judge</a> on the case and <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227561237782855680\">praised Attorney General William Barr</a> for his handling of it.</p>\n\n<p>He has <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1229756032693473280\">also</a> <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227423392078409728\">attacked</a> the four prosecutors who withdrew from the case after the Justice Department stepped in to scale back the seven-to-nine-year sentence they recommended.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Who are the four prosecutors (Mueller people?) who cut and ran after being exposed for recommending a ridiculous 9 year prison sentence to a man that got caught up in an investigation that was illegal, the Mueller Scam, and shouldn&rsquo;t ever even have started?&quot; Trump wrote <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227423392078409728\">Feb. 11</a>.</p>\n\n<p>See Figure 1 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>The tweet muddles many facts. The Justice Department&rsquo;s inspector general concluded that the Russia probe led by former special counsel Robert Mueller was <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2019/dec/11/william-barr/barr-disputes-inspector-generals-report/\">justified</a>, and <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2017/jun/26/donald-trump/trump-wrongly-calls-muellers-special-counsel-clint/\">two</a> of the four lawyers who quit the Stone case were on <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2018/mar/21/donald-trump/fact-checking-donald-trumps-claims-about-Mueller/\">Mueller&rsquo;s team</a>.</p>\n\n<p>Additionally, the prosecutors were not &quot;exposed&quot; in the sense that they were caught red-handed or hiding something, since they filed their sentencing recommendation in a public court memo.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>And while Trump may think the sentencing recommendation was &quot;ridiculous,&quot; it fell within the federal sentencing guidelines for Stone&rsquo;s offense.</p>\n\n<p>The White House did not respond to a request for comment.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">What you need to know about Stone&rsquo;s case</div>\n\n<p>Stone was <a href=\"https://www.factcheck.org/2020/02/roger-stones-crimes/\">convicted</a> in November for witness tampering, lying to Congress and obstructing a congressional investigation after a jury found him guilty of seven counts related to his 2017 House testimony and efforts to access hacked Democratic emails ahead of the 2016 election.</p>\n\n<p>On Feb. 10, the Justice Department&rsquo;s prosecutors <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.279.0_5.pdf\">filed a sentencing memo</a> in court recommending that Stone serve a prison term lasting between 87 and 108 months, or 7.25 and 9 years. Trump sounded off on Twitter, calling the recommendation <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227109357726445568\">&quot;disgraceful&quot;</a> and a <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1227122206783811585\">&quot;miscarriage of justice.&quot;</a></p>\n\n<p>See Figure 2 on PolitiFact.com</p>\n\n<p>On Feb. 11, a senior Justice Department official <a href=\"https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/justice-dept-to-reduce-sentencing-recommendation-for-trump-associate-roger-stone-official-says-after-president-calls-it-unfair/2020/02/11/ad81fd36-4cf0-11ea-bf44-f5043eb3918a_story.html\">told reporters</a> the department was &quot;shocked&quot; by the recommendation and found it &quot;extreme and excessive and grossly disproportionate to Stone&#39;s offenses.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>In a rare move, the department submitted a <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.286.0_9.pdf\">new memo</a> undercutting the original recommendation and asking the court to sentence Stone to a shorter, unspecified term in prison.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><strong><em>RELATED: <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/feb/19/ask-politifact-can-president-intervene-federal-cri/\">Can the president intervene in a federal criminal case?</a></em></strong></p>\n\n<p>The development spurred concerns that Barr was letting Trump guide his decision-making, which Barr and the <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/11/us/politics/roger-stone-sentencing.html\">Justice Department</a> have <a href=\"https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/barr-blasts-trumps-tweets-stone-case-impossible-job/story?id=68963276\">denied</a>. Thousands of former Justice Department attorneys signed a <a href=\"https://medium.com/@dojalumni/doj-alumni-statement-on-the-events-surrounding-the-sentencing-of-roger-stone-c2cb75ae4937\">letter</a> calling for Barr to resign.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">Prosecutors&rsquo; actions were not taken in secret</div>\n\n<p>In the aftermath of the Justice Department&rsquo;s intervention, four <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/11/us/politics/roger-stone-federal-prosecutors.html\">career prosecutors</a> on Stone&rsquo;s case &mdash; <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.282.0_7.pdf\">Aaron Zelinsky</a>, <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.283.0_8.pdf\">Jonathan Kravis</a>, <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.285.0_12.pdf\">Adam Jed</a> and <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.287.0_17.pdf\">Michael Marando</a> &mdash; filed notices to withdraw from it. Kravis resigned from the Justice Department entirely.</p>\n\n<p>We were unable to reach Kravis and Jed, and Zelinsky and Marando declined to comment.</p>\n\n<p>Regardless of their motivations for withdrawing, it&rsquo;s misleading for Trump to say they &quot;cut and ran&quot; and were &quot;exposed&quot; for proposing a seven-to-nine-year sentence for Stone.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>There was <a href=\"https://apnews.com/da2b132d335daf00e292aa6c8b873940\">nothing secret</a> about their sentencing request, which was submitted in a <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.279.0_5.pdf\">public court filing</a> that all four attorneys signed.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">Sentencing recommendation was within guidelines</div>\n\n<p>Trump called the recommended prison sentence &quot;ridiculous,&quot; and other conservative commentators have said the seven-to-nine-year penalty is more fitting of a violent offender.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>But legal experts told us that federal prosecutors often recommend sentences for nonviolent criminals that are within federal sentencing guidelines but may seem extreme to outsiders.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There are thousands of cases where the recommended sentencing range under the guidelines would produce a sentence that most reasonable people would think is excessively long, but DOJ routinely asks for those guidelines sentences to be imposed,&quot; said Rachel Barkow, professor of law and policy at New York University Law.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>When a person is sentenced in federal court, <a href=\"https://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/research-and-publications/research-projects-and-surveys/miscellaneous/201811_fed-sentencing-basics.pdf\">two factors</a> come into play: The punishment allowed under the law in question, and the U.S. Sentencing Commission&rsquo;s <a href=\"https://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/about/overview/Overview_Federal_Sentencing_Guidelines.pdf\">Federal Sentencing Guidelines</a>. Judges ultimately decide which punishments to hand down.</p>\n\n<p>The maximum and minimum punishments written into any law are binding, but since 2005, the federal sentencing guidelines have been considered advisory, rather than mandatory.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The Supreme Court <a href=\"https://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/about/overview/Overview_Federal_Sentencing_Guidelines.pdf\">ruled</a> at that time that federal district courts, &quot;while not bound to apply the guidelines, must consult those guidelines and take them into account when sentencing.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>In Stone&rsquo;s case, obstruction of a congressional investigation and lying to Congress each provide for prison sentences of up to five years, while witness tampering provides for up to 20 years. Stone had no criminal history and decided to proceed with a trial rather than plead guilty.</p>\n\n<p>Following the federal sentencing guidelines, which use a point system to calculate an offense level and the corresponding sentencing range, the prosecutors in Stone&rsquo;s case <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.279.0_5.pdf\">calculated</a> that the longtime Trump ally deserved 87 to 108 months in jail.</p>\n\n<p>That recommendation relied on several &quot;enhancements&quot; that elevated Stone&rsquo;s punishment above the base level for his offenses because of the flagrant way in which he committed his crimes. Specifically, Stone threatened a witness&rsquo;s life and dog, posted a <a href=\"https://twitter.com/jonswaine/status/1097574608692264961?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1097574608692264961&amp;ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2019%2F02%2F19%2Fus%2Froger-stone-instagram-judge.html\">photo</a> of the judge with crosshairs beside her head, and repeatedly defied judges&rsquo; orders.</p>\n\n<p>Stone&rsquo;s defense argued against the threat-related enhancement because the witness testified that he didn&rsquo;t take Stone&rsquo;s threats seriously. Prosecutors rebutted that &quot;it is the threat itself, not the likelihood of carrying out the threat, that triggers the enhancement.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Legal experts said the prosecutors were not misguided in their original assessment. Stanford Law School professor Robert Weisberg told us the requested sentencing was &quot;harsh but not ridiculous,&quot; and Georgetown Law professor Rosa Brooks said it was &quot;entirely reasonable.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;The recommended sentence was consistent with the sentencing guidelines,&quot; Barkow said.</p>\n\n<p>Even the Justice Department&rsquo;s <a href=\"https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583/gov.uscourts.dcd.203583.286.0_9.pdf#page=2\">second memo</a> overruling the initial sentencing request acknowledged that the original recommendation was &quot;perhaps technically applicable.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There were a couple of arguable aspects in the government&rsquo;s calculation of the range in this case, but I don&rsquo;t think anything so patently unreasonable as to qualify as &lsquo;ridiculous,&rsquo;&quot; said Michael O&rsquo;Hear, professor of law at Marquette University Law School and an expert in criminal procedure and sentencing.</p>\n\n<p>Federal judges sentence below the guidelines range in <a href=\"https://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/research-and-publications/annual-reports-and-sourcebooks/2018/Table29.pdf\">nearly half of all cases</a>, O&rsquo;Hear said. But these lesser sentences typically occur when defendants plead guilty or are especially cooperative and helpful with the government&rsquo;s other investigations.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Since Stone did neither of these things, there was nothing extraordinary about the government&rsquo;s initial request that Stone be sentenced within the guideline range,&quot; O&rsquo;Hear said.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;If the Department of Justice now takes the position that sentences of 87-108 months are excessive in cases that do not involve serious violent crime, then the department will have to reconsider its recommendations in many more cases than just Stone&rsquo;s,&quot; he added.</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T15:51:41-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "ask-politifact-can-president-intervene-federal-cri",
            "personalities": [
                {
                    "slug": "william-barr",
                    "full_name": "William Barr",
                    "first_name": "William",
                    "last_name": "Barr"
                },
                {
                    "slug": "donald-trump",
                    "full_name": "Donald Trump",
                    "first_name": "Donald",
                    "last_name": "Trump"
                }
            ],
            "headline": "Ask PolitiFact: Can the president intervene in a federal criminal case?",
            "entry": "<p>After President Donald Trump complained about the Justice Department&rsquo;s proposed seven-to-nine year sentence for longtime Trump ally Roger Stone, the department reduced the sentence it was proposing for Stone.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>This move alarmed Trump&rsquo;s critics, who perceived it as the president meddling in a criminal case &mdash; a breach of the usual arm&rsquo;s-length relationship on criminal cases between the White House and the Justice Department.</p>\n\n<p>With so much attention now focused on the Justice Department and its independence from politics, a PolitiFact reader asked us to take a closer look at how much influence the president is permitted to have on prosecutorial decisions at the Justice Department.</p>\n\n<p>It&rsquo;s actually a bit more nuanced than one would think from how the debate has played out so far, legal experts say. Trump does have the right to intervene &mdash; though within limits.</p>\n\n<p><strong><em>Do you have a question for us? Email us at <a href=\"mailto:[email protected]?subject=Ask%20PolitiFact\">[email protected]</a>, and we&rsquo;ll try to answer it. Put &quot;Ask PolitiFact&quot; in the subject line.</em></strong></p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">Roger Stone&rsquo;s sentencing</div>\n\n<p>The current controversy emerged after the initial Justice Department recommendation for Stone&rsquo;s sentencing was rescinded. Four prosecutors protested by withdrawing from the case. Meanwhile, hundreds of veterans of the Justice Department <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/16/us/politics/barr-trump-justice-department.html\">spoke out</a> in an open letter, calling for Attorney General William Barr to resign and <a href=\"https://medium.com/@dojalumni/doj-alumni-statement-on-the-events-surrounding-the-sentencing-of-roger-stone-c2cb75ae4937\">writing</a> that they &quot;strongly&quot; condemned Trump&rsquo;s and Barr&rsquo;s &quot;interference in the fair administration of justice.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Barr, meanwhile, sat for an <a href=\"https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/transcript-attorney-general-bill-barrs-exclusive-interview-abc/story?id=68975178\">ABC News interview</a> on Feb. 13 and <a href=\"https://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2020/02/17/business/bc-us-fact-check-week.html\">urged</a> Trump to stop tweeting about Justice Department cases, saying it makes &quot;it impossible for me to do my job and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that we&rsquo;re doing our work with integrity.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Trump responded in a <a href=\"https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/1228311415192215553\">tweet</a> that he has &quot;the legal right&quot; to intervene in cases handled by the Justice Department.</p>\n\n<p>Does he? Yes, within some limits.</p>\n\n<p>We asked Peter Zeidenberg, a partner at the law firm Arent Fox LLP who previously spent 17 years as a federal prosecutor, including in the Justice Department&rsquo;s public integrity section and in the U.S. Attorney&rsquo;s Office for the District of Columbia.</p>\n\n<p>He said the president &quot;has the legal right to ask the attorney general to intervene in a federal criminal case,&quot; though such actions are generally frowned upon.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;There is strong precedent and custom that the Justice Department is meant to be apolitical and that it is unquestionably improper for the department to permit political considerations to affect its investigative, charging, or sentencing decisions,&quot; Zeidenberg said.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">Presidential interventions: context matters</div>\n\n<p>Whether presidential involvement in a Justice Department case is allowed or prohibited depends heavily on the nature of the case.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;The president has a constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed,&quot; said Barbara L. McQuade, a University of Michigan law professor. &quot;It would be proper, for example, for a president to ask the attorney general to decline to file charges if it would interfere with a drone strike being planned by the Defense Department, or a treaty negotiation being conducted by the State Department.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>By contrast, actions that would benefit the president personally, or aid presidential friends and allies, would be problematic.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;It would be improper for the president to ask the attorney general to investigate a political rival, or to be lenient on a friend or family member,&quot; McQuade said.</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">The law on obstruction of justice</div>\n\n<p>The clearest barrier to presidential intervention in a case involves statutes against obstruction of justice.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Three elements are generally <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/article/2019/mar/25/martha-stewart-donald-trump-can-there-be-obstructi/\">required</a> for a conviction on obstruction of justice: the existence of a pending federal judicial proceeding; the defendant&rsquo;s knowledge of the proceeding; and the defendant&rsquo;s corrupt intent to interfere with, or attempt to interfere with, the proceeding.</p>\n\n<p>Presumably, the president in this example would know about a pending federal proceeding. So the question would be whether the presidential action was undertaken with corrupt intent, said Robert Weisberg, director of the Stanford University Criminal Justice Center.</p>\n\n<p>However, even if a president&rsquo;s corrupt intent seemed clear, longstanding Justice Department guidelines would block the indictment of a sitting president. This would mean that the only immediate remedy is impeachment &mdash; a process that has already been tried against Trump. Trump has already been impeached, but the Senate voted against removing him.</p>\n\n<p>The attorney general would not have to obey an order they believed was improper, though if they didn&rsquo;t, they would risk being fired, said Vanderbilt University law professor Christopher Slobogin.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<div class=\"pf_subheadline\">Norms and traditions</div>\n\n<p>So if there isn&rsquo;t much of a legal bar against presidential involvement in Justice Department decisions, why the outcry? It has to do with the erosion in longstanding norms and traditions.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The backlash to President Richard Nixon&rsquo;s efforts to influence law enforcement actions during the Watergate scandal led presidents of both parties to put more distance between themselves and the Justice Department.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Nixon was criticized for telling his attorney general to drop an antitrust prosecution of ITT, and his attorney general, Richard Kleindienst, actually pled guilty to lying to Congress about the affair,&quot; said James Robenalt, an attorney who teaches a course about Watergate.</p>\n\n<p>To affirm the separation, attorneys general have issued memos that set limits on the communications between the Justice Department and the White House.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>For instance, a memo released in <a href=\"https://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/ag/legacy/2008/04/15/ag-121907.pdf\">2007</a> under President George W. Bush prefaced the policy by saying that communications on pending criminal and civil-enforcement matters &quot;must be limited&quot; to situations &quot;where it is important for the performance of the president&#39;s duties and where appropriate from a law enforcement perspective.&quot; The goal, the memo said, is to ensure that there is &quot;public confidence that the laws of the United States are administered and enforced in an impartial manner.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>A <a href=\"https://lawfare.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/staging/2017/2009%20Eric%20Holder%20memo.pdf\">2009</a> memo released under President Barack Obama used even stronger language to support the idea of distance between the White House and the Justice Department to ensure impartiality.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;The rule of law depends upon the evenhanded administration of justice,&quot; the 2009 memo said. &quot;The legal judgments of the Department of Justice must be impartial and insulated from political influence. It is imperative that the department&#39;s investigatory and prosecutorial powers be exercised free from partisan consideration. It is a fundamental duty of every employee of the department to ensure that these principles are upheld in all of the department&#39;s legal endeavors.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>The memo issued by the Trump administration in <a href=\"https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015a-dde8-d23c-a7ff-dfef4d530000\">2017</a> upheld the gist of the previous memos, but its prefacing language was more restrained.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;These rules exist to ensure both efficient execution of the administration&rsquo;s policies and the highest level of integrity with respect to civil or criminal enforcement proceedings handled by DOJ,&quot; the 2017 memo said. &quot;In order to ensure that DOJ exercises its investigatory and prosecutorial functions free from the fact or appearance of improper political influence, these rules must be strictly followed.&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Ultimately, Zeidenberg said, interventions like Trump&rsquo;s &quot;infect&quot; the process and weaken public confidence in how the Justice Department comes to its decisions.</p>\n\n<p>&quot;But it is not, strictly speaking, illegal.&quot;</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T12:25:26-05:00"
        },
        {
            "slug": "fact-checking-democratic-us-senate-debate-texas",
            "personalities": [],
            "headline": "Fact-checking the Democratic U.S. Senate debate in Texas",
            "entry": "<p>As Texas voters took to the polls on Tuesday, the first day of early voting in the state&rsquo;s March 3 primary, all but one of the Democratic candidates running for the U.S. Senate participated in their second debate of the race.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The debate featured 11 candidates, each hoping to be the one voters choose to challenge Republican Sen. John Cornyn in the general election: Chris Bell, Michael Cooper, Amanda Edwards, Jack Daniel Foster Jr., Annie &quot;Mam&aacute;&quot; Garcia, Victor Hugo Harris, MJ Hegar, Sema Hernandez, Adrian Ocegueda, Cristina Tzinzt&uacute;n Ramirez and Royce West.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The 90-minute debate featured questions targeted to each candidate, with an emphasis on those with the<a href=\"https://www.texastribune.org/2020/02/17/mj-hegar-leads-democratic-us-senate-candidates-texas-poll-finds/\"> highest recent polling numbers</a>: Hegar, Tzinzt&uacute;n Ramirez, Bell, Edwards and West. Even these candidates, however, are widely unknown &mdash; a recent University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll found that most voters hadn&rsquo;t heard of any of the candidates in the race.</p>\n\n<p>Responses during Tuesday&rsquo;s debate were limited to 45 or 30 seconds, but candidates still found time to make claims to check.</p>\n\n<p>Here are a few statements from the debate, in context:&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><strong>Royce West: &quot;When you began to think about our federal prison system, some 2.3 million people incarcerated at a cost of about $31,000 per year&hellip;&quot;</strong></p>\n\n<p>When moderators asked each candidate to identify an action President Donald Trump has taken that they support, West, a state senator from Dallas, pointed to the Republican&rsquo;s actions on criminal justice reform.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;When you began to think about our federal prison system &mdash; some 2.3 million people incarcerated at a cost of about $31,000 per year &mdash;the First Step Act was an act that was a step in the right direction, but there&rsquo;s still more to do.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>West&rsquo;s statement needs clarification.</p>\n\n<p>The latest federal figures on &quot;correctional populations in the United States&quot; are available in a <a href=\"https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/cpus16.pdf\">2018 report from the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics</a> examining 2016 figures. In 2016, the incarcerated population in the United States was more than 2.16 million</p>\n\n<p>But not all of those individuals are in the federal prison system, as West said. The same report shows that, at the end of 2016, there were 188,300 people in federal prisons, 1,228,800 in state prisons and 740,700 in local jails.</p>\n\n<p>In terms of cost, <a href=\"https://www.vera.org/publications/price-of-prisons-2015-state-spending-trends/price-of-prisons-2015-state-spending-trends/price-of-prisons-2015-state-spending-trends-prison-spending\">a 2015 estimate on prison spending from the Vera Institute of Justice</a> found that, on average, the annual cost per inmate in the United States was $33,274, for a grand total of more than $42.8 billion annually.</p>\n\n<p>In Texas, the average annual cost per inmate was estimated at $22,012 in 2015.</p>\n\n<p><strong>Jack Daniel Foster Jr.: &quot;Ten to 15 counties in the state of Texas are urban; the rest are rural.&quot;</strong></p>\n\n<p>Foster, who teaches GED classes to state prison inmates in Dayton, said his Democratic opponents are too focused on representing issues of interest to urban voters and don&rsquo;t focus enough on the needs of voters in rural communities.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>&quot;Ten to 15 counties in the state of Texas are urban; the rest are rural,&quot; he said. &quot;Most of our candidates are out of touch with rural counties.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Of the state&rsquo;s 254 counties, 34 counties are members of the<a href=\"https://cuc.org/\"> Texas Conference of Urban Counties</a>. Counties are eligible to join the conference if they have a population of 100,000 people or more or are part of an urban cluster with neighboring counties.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The 34 counties in the organization contain 79% of the state&rsquo;s population, according to the group.</p>\n\n<p>The <a href=\"https://www.dshs.texas.gov/chs/hprc/counties.shtm\">Texas Department of State Health Services</a> uses &quot;non-metropolitan and metropolitan&quot; classifications from the U.S. Office of Budget and Management interchangeably with &quot;rural and urban,&quot; and says Texas has 82 urban counties and 172 rural counties.</p>\n\n<p><strong>Chris Bell: &quot;When you mention failed campaigns, I&rsquo;m really in pretty good company there: Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, Bernie Sanders, Sheila Jackson Lee&hellip;&quot;</strong></p>\n\n<p>Moderators asked Bell: &quot;You&rsquo;re running on your experience, but that experience only includes two years in Congress and a series of failed campaigns. If voters are looking for experience, why should they select you over someone like state Sen. Royce West?&quot;</p>\n\n<p>Before entering the Senate race, Bell ran for elected office numerous times at the city, state and federal level.</p>\n\n<p>Bell served on the Houston City Council from 1997 but lost a bid to be mayor of Houston in 2001. The following year, he was elected to the U.S. House, where he served one term. He was defeated in his re-election bid by Rep. Al Green.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>In 2006, he was the Democratic nominee in the Texas governor&rsquo;s race and lost the general election to Republican Rick Perry. In 2015, he ran for Houston mayor again but was unsuccessful.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>What about the politicians Bell named? Did they lose races during their political careers?&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><em>Abraham Lincoln: </em>Before being elected president in 1860, Lincoln ran for a seat in the Illinois state legislature, Congress and the U.S. Senate, according to an <a href=\"https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/abraham-lincoln-failure/\">account of his election history from Snopes</a>. He lost his campaign for a seat in the statehouse in 1832 and then won election there two years later.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>While serving in the legislature, he ran two unsuccessful campaigns to be speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives. Lincoln served one term as a congressman from Illinois, following the Whig Party practice of the time of not seeking re-election.</p>\n\n<p>Lincoln also expressed interest in serving in the U.S. Senate, which at the time were positions appointed by the Illinois state legislature.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Lincoln withdrew from consideration for a Senate seat in 1854 after the process was deadlocked and he didn&rsquo;t receive a majority of votes. In 1858, when he was again interested in a Senate seat, his party did not gain control of the state legislature and he was not appointed.</p>\n\n<p><em>Ronald Reagan: </em>Reagan served as governor in California before he was elected president in 1980, but his winning campaign wasn&rsquo;t his first bid for the White House.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>Reagan first sought his party&rsquo;s nomination for the presidency in 1968, but Richard Nixon secured the nomination. In 1976, Reagan lost the nomination to Gerald Ford.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><em>Bernie Sanders:</em> <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/jan/15/elizabeth-warren/democratic-debates-biggest-electoral-losers-number/\">PolitiFact looked at the election history</a> of Democratic presidential nominees in January, including Vermont&rsquo;s senator. Sanders has lost seven elections during his political career, including campaigns for governor of Vermont and seats in Congress.</p>\n\n<p><em>Sheila Jackson Lee: </em>The U.S. representative has represented Texas&rsquo; 18th Congressional District since the 1995 election, which came after years of service at the city level and some unsuccessful election bids.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p><a href=\"http://www.sheilajacksonlee18.com/wordpress/bio/early-career/\">On her campaign website</a>, Jackson Lee&rsquo;s biography glosses over these early losses: &quot;In 1983, Jackson Lee chose to pursue elected office to become Harris County judge. After several close races, she was appointed to the City of Houston Municipal Court to serve as judge in 1987.&quot;</p>\n\n<p><strong>Annie &quot;Mam&aacute;&quot; Garcia: &quot;In this country, we are such an outlier compared to any other country in the world. We have more people that die at the end of a barrel every week than most countries experience in an entire year.&quot;</strong></p>\n\n<p>PolitiFact has examined a number of similar claims.</p>\n\n<p>As a presidential candidate, Democrat Beto O&rsquo;Rourke said that &quot;no other country comes even close to&quot; the number of people who die due to gun violence in the United states. <a href=\"https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2019/aug/02/beto-orourke/are-there-more-gun-deaths-united-states-any-other-/\">We rated that Claim Mostly False</a>.</p>\n\n<p>Studies show that the United States experiences more firearm injury deaths than other countries, but only countries of <a href=\"https://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343%2815%2901030-X/fulltext#tbl4\">similar socioeconomic standing</a>. Garcia&rsquo;s claim, like O&rsquo;Rourke&rsquo;s remark, was about &quot;any other country in the world.&quot;&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>A study of <a href=\"https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2698492\">worldwide firearm deaths in 2016</a> shows that Brazil experienced more firearm injury deaths, and <a href=\"https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/theres-a-new-global-ranking-of-gun-deaths-heres-where-the-u-s-stands\">a separate analysis</a> of the study found that more than a dozen countries had more firearm deaths per capita than the United States.</p>\n\n<p><strong>Cristina Tzinzt&uacute;n Ramirez: &quot;When LBJ was our president, the highest income bracket in this country paid 70%. Today it is just 37%.&quot;</strong></p>\n\n<p>Tzinzt&uacute;n Ramirez&rsquo;s statement about the current tax rate for the highest income bracket, <a href=\"https://taxfoundation.org/2019-tax-brackets/\">based on 2019 figures</a>. The 37% rate is for people with taxable income higher than $510,300 for single filers and $612,350 for married couples.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>What about under President Lyndon B. Johnson?</p>\n\n<p>When Johnson took office in 1963, the tax rate for the highest income bracket was at 91% for people with taxable income higher than $300,000, or $400,000 for married couples, according to historical figures from the <a href=\"https://files.taxfoundation.org/legacy/docs/fed_individual_rate_history_nominal.pdf\">Tax Foundation.</a></p>\n\n<p>In 1964, the rate was 77%. Then the rate for the highest income bracket fell to 70%, where it stayed for the remainder of Johnson&rsquo;s presidency.&nbsp;</p>\n\n<p>The rate stayed at 70% until 1982, when it dropped to 50% for the highest income bracket. It fell to 38.5% in 1987 and has fluctuated in the intervening years.</p>",
            "publication_date": "2020-02-19T11:09:13-05:00"
        }
    ]
}