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Bill Adair
By Bill Adair October 2, 2008

SUMMARY: Vice presidential candidates Sarah Palin and Joe Biden meet in St. Louis. We check their facts and find some stretching and mistakes from both.

It began with a friendly handshake and a folksy question from Palin, "Can I call you Joe?"

That was fine with Joe. But it didn't take long for the two vice presidential candidates to get into some sharp exchanges about tax policy, bipartisanship and the Iraq war.

We examined many of their claims and found that:

•  Biden was wrong that John McCain's tax plan provides "virtually nothing to the middle class." We rated that one Barely True .

•  Palin wrongly characterized Barack Obama's health plan when she said it would be "government-run." Another Barely True.

•  Biden was pretty much on the mark when he quoted McCain saying he was "surprised there was a subprime mortgage problem." We rated that one Mostly True .

•  Palin was right that Obama has voted with the Democrats 96 percent of the time. True .

•  Biden distorted McCain's comments about whether he would meet with the prime minister of Spain. Biden got a Barely True for that one.

• Palin was right that Biden "said that Barack Obama was not ready to be commander in chief." He said it in a Democratic debate in August 2007. We ruled this True.

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