Stand up for facts and support PolitiFact.
Now is your chance to go on the record as supporting trusted, factual information by joining PolitiFact’s Truth Squad. Contributions or gifts to PolitiFact, which is part of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit Poynter Institute, are tax deductible.
I would like to contribute
The left-leaning advocacy group MoveOn.org is known for its willingness to take on conservative targets point-blank. Remember the controversy over last year's "General Betray Us" ads the group placed in the New York Times ?
A reader forwarded us MoveOn's latest e-mail salvo against Republican candidate John McCain. (MoveOn has endorsed Barack Obama for president.) In the e-mail, MoveOn appears to be taking a page from the anonymous chain e-mails we've checked out that urge you to forward the e-mail to everyone you know:
"His carefully crafted positive image relies on people not knowing this stuff — and you might be surprised by some of it," the e-mail states. "Please check out the list below, and then forward it to your friends, family, and co-workers. We can't rely on the media to tell folks about the real John McCain — but if we all pass this along, we can reach as many people as CNN Headline News does on a good night."
The e-mail then goes on to list a number of attacks on McCain, from his positions on foreign and domestic policy to his personal wealth and his alleged hot temper.
There's a lot here to check, so we've started by looking at the e-mail's attacks on McCain on domestic policy. (There will be more to come on the other items soon.)
On domestic policy, we found MoveOn was on solid factual ground with its attacks, with a few minor quibbles. Here's what we checked:
* McCain did oppose a Martin Luther King Jr. holiday early in his career as an elected official, and now says he was wrong . We found MoveOn's statement on this matter True.
* McCain opposes abortion and said he wants to see Roe vs. Wade overturned. MoveOn is right again, so we give them another True.
* McCain has a low rating from the Children's Defense Fund, voted against the state children's health program in 2007, and defended Bush's veto of it . There are few mitigating factors voters might want to consider, but it's still True.
* McCain did get a zero rating from the League of Conservation Voters . But the e-mail gives the impression that McCain is rock-bottom on environmental issues. We rate this charge to be Half True.