Articles from May, 2011

Mailbag: Nitpickers, or 'masters of understatement'?

It's been a busy few weeks for PolitiFact. Here's what our readers had to say about what we did, and how well we did it.

Holding officials accountable with new promise meters

We've expanded our promise meters to the local level. Today, PolitiFact Florida unveils the Buck-O-Meter, tracking the promises of Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn.

Perry on a presidential run: 'I’m going to think about it'

The Texas governor said Friday he'll consider running for president. That's contrary to a campaign promise that he would not. So PolitiFact Texas moves the Perry-O-Meter needle on that promise to Stalled.

Are auto companies paid up with American taxpayers?

Chrysler Group LLC announced this week that it had repaid all its government loans, with interest, six years ahead of schedule. GM made similar claims last year. But does this really settle the tab with the American taxpayer? We take a look.

Over a cliff, yes; but is this ad also over the top?

It's an eye-catching -- if not eye-popping -- ad. But is the plan by Rep. Paul Ryan  really tantamount to throwing Granny from the cliff?

Banned light bulbs? Is the government saying no to incandescents?

It's a popular talking point for conservative lawmakers: They say Democrats are expanding government so much that they're now banning the trusty light bulb. But the law doesn't ban the bulbs, it just sets efficiency standards. And it passed with bipartisan support and was signed into law by a Republican president.

The Truth-O-Meter, with a Jersey accent

The Star-Ledger will launch our ninth state site, PolitiFact New Jersey, next month.

They built the danged fence . . . or did they?

In the fall campaign, Sen. John McCain said the government was dragging its heels on border security and should just "complete the danged fence."  President Obama said last week it's pretty much done. We find that depends on how you define "fence."

The (false) talking point that simply won't die

Mitt Romney calls the health care law a "government takeover." The Truth-O-Meter bursts into flames.

Perry and Obama remain miles apart

The White House says the Texas governor turned down an invitation to meet with the president. PolitiFact Texas puts that claim to the Truth-O-Meter.

Gingrich: One web video, two false claims

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich announced his run for the presidency in a web video. But he was less than accurate in two of his claims.

False ratings for both Obama, Boehner

Both President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner turned to the economy in recent comments. We found that each said something that earned a rating of False.

On the border -- and sometimes over the line

As President Barack Obama goes to the U.S.-Mexico border to talk immigration policy and border security, we review some of our major fact-checks on those issues.

Fact-checking Newt Gingrich

With Newt Gingrich's hat hovering in the air above the ring, we decided to look at his record on the Truth-O-Meter.

Fact-checking the first Republican debate

The South Carolina debate was missing several of the most prominent candidates, but there were still plenty of facts to check.

New PolitiFact feature highlights work of other fact-checkers

We're introducing Beyond the Truth-O-Meter, a new feature that links to work by, the Washington Post and other fact-checkers.

Pants on Fire to race in Kentucky Derby

The horse got his name from his father's passion, not the Truth-O-Meter rating. But he's still our pick for Saturday's race.

Is there a difference today between war and peace?

Mitt Romney, a possible Republican presidential candidate, drew derision when he wrote in an op-ed that we're currently in "peacetime." But despite military action in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, the distinctions betwen wartime and peacetime are no longer what they once were.

Pledge to kill Osama bin Laden earns Promise Kept

We post new Obameter items involving the death of Osama bin Laden. The promise to kill him gets a Kept; the vow to "crush al-Qaida" is rated In the Works.

In 2008, Obama vowed to kill Osama bin Laden

With the announcement that Osama Bin Laden is dead, many PolitiFact readers have pointed out President Obama's vow to kill him from October 2008. Is it the president's most significant Promise Kept?