May 31, 2011 10:39 am ET filed under Fact Check
The Sunday political talk shows cranked out their usual smorgasbord of misinformation and talking points this weekend. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) misled NBC viewers about the relationship between President Bush's tax cuts and our current national debt, and implied that President Obama has raised taxes when the opposite is true. On CBS, Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) claimed the House GOP's "Path to Prosperity" budget will "save" Medicare (though it would in fact replace the entire program with undervalued health care vouchers) and deflected all criticism of the GOP's plan by claiming that "Democrats have not put forward any plan whatsoever," even though that's not true. Cantor capped his appearance by exaggerating the debt reduction in the GOP plan by about $6 trillion. 2012 hopeful Tim Pawlenty told ABC viewers the president is "doing nothing" on Medicare, even though that program's trustees say President Obama's signature health care law extended the life of the program by eight years. And on Fox, freshman Rep. Allen West (R-FL) falsely claimed that 'only Democrats' have voted to cut Medicare.
May 23, 2011 1:03 pm ET filed under Video
Sen. McConnell's Half-Hearted Defense Of Medicare Vouchers: "Paul Ryan Would Say It's Not A Voucher Plan"
From the May 22, 2011, edition of Fox News Sunday:
May 23, 2011 11:18 am ET filed under Blog
May 23, 2011 10:52 am ET filed under Fact Check
The absurd ginned-up right-wing outrage over President Obama's reiteration of a long-standing tenet of mainstream Middle East peace plans continued on Sunday morning, even as the president drew applause from the crowd at AIPAC for repeating his call for a Palestinian state based on "the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps." Newt Gingrich, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-MI) each misrepresented the president's words in order to attack him. Honest conservatives were no easier to find on domestic policy issues either. McConnell joined Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) in claiming the House GOP budget 'saves Medicare' (although it in fact replaces the program with something utterly different) and that the White House would ration seniors' care (another falsehood). McConnell also claimed tax cuts aren't driving the debt and lied about President Obama's position on the Bush tax cuts. Meanwhile, Ryan claimed the Republican Medicare scheme polls better when you explain the details (nope), insisted Democrats haven't put forth any debt reduction plans (wrong again), and said his plan cuts $6 trillion in spending when on net it only cuts $155 billion. On CBS, Gingrich repeated an exaggeration of his record as Speaker of the House. And, not to be outdone, pizza magnate Herman Cain misled Fox viewers about the Fair Tax and claimed that failing to raise the debt ceiling would increase "market confidence," even though the market is saying the opposite.
May 16, 2011 10:49 am ET filed under Blog
May 16, 2011 10:39 am ET filed under Fact Check
The Sunday political talk shows were full of conservatives spouting misinformation about everything from energy policy and taxes to the debt and recent economic history. Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) falsely claimed the economy isn't creating jobs, despite 2.1 million new private-sector jobs added over 14 straight months of growth. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) misled on Social Security, Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) claimed the Bush tax cuts haven't hurt the national debt picture, and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) exaggerated the spending cuts in the House GOP budget, which total a mere $155 billion after you factor in the deep tax cuts the plan offers to the wealthiest. Each of those three claimed that ending tax subsidies for oil companies would increase gas prices, but it won't — and Kyl had to blatantly misrepresent a Congressional Research Service report to support his claim. And in a statement that sums up GOP insincerity on a negotiated debt-reduction agreement, Ryan rewrote the last decade of Republican policy by claiming that "the whole reason we're running into this debt limit so soon is because of the spending spree that has occurred over the last two years."
April 13, 2011 6:06 pm ET filed under Blog
April 05, 2011 5:27 pm ET filed under Blog
March 25, 2011 3:29 pm ET filed under Blog
March 23, 2011 3:51 pm ET filed under Fact Check
This morning on Fox News, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) declared that President Obama and supporters of the Affordable Care Act "keep saying things that aren't true" about the law, while Republicans continue to "put the facts out and our facts are backed up by the authorities." Of course, Hatch has it exactly backwards, which was evident today as Republicans commemorated the health care law's one-year anniversary by repeating worn out lies about a "government takeover" that will destroy jobs, cut Medicare benefits, increase the deficit, and raise premiums. Let's examine the real facts about the Affordable Care Act.
March 14, 2011 1:19 pm ET filed under Blog
March 14, 2011 9:57 am ET filed under Blog
March 14, 2011 9:50 am ET filed under Fact Check
Natural disasters nearly crowded out political chatter on the Sunday talk shows, but conservative guests dutifully plugged talking points into the spaces between stories about leaking reactors and coastal devastation in Japan. Sens. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Jon Kyl (R-AZ) are still clinging to the notion that the Recovery Act didn't lead to the current economy recovery, and each man blamed President Obama for the spike in gas prices that's followed recent political turmoil in the Middle East. McConnell also claimed the government's done nothing to address entitlement costs, although the Affordable Care Act took a number of steps to reign in the health care spending that's darkening our fiscal horizon. Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-TN) falsely insisted that tax cuts increase revenues on Fox News Sunday, while Gov. Mitch Daniels (R-IN) misled Meet the Press viewers about Gov. Scott Walker's (R-WI) campaign rhetoric.
March 08, 2011 5:33 pm ET filed under Blog
March 07, 2011 10:17 am ET filed under Blog
March 07, 2011 10:06 am ET filed under Fact Check
For the first time in weeks, the Sunday political shows didn't touch on GOP union-busting efforts in Wisconsin and elsewhere, choosing instead to focus on national economic issues. That meant a series of tired talking points from familiar Republican faces. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) implied Democrats have raised taxes, when in fact they've cut taxes by hundreds of billions. Reps. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) and Michele Bachmann (R-MN) ignored economic growth and 1.5 million new private sector jobs in the past year to attack President Obama's economic policies. Bachmann also misled NBC viewers about the Affordable Care Act and the partisan nature of the Tea Party. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) claimed the administration has protected government workers at the expense of private sector jobs. On less familiar topics, Rep. Peter King (R-NY) dishonestly insisted American Muslims don't cooperate with law enforcement despite much evidence to the contrary, and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) foolishly claimed that Apple electronics are manufactured in America. Somebody should tell that to the Chinese factory workers who built your iPhone.
February 02, 2011 11:46 am ET filed under Blog
January 31, 2011 12:03 pm ET filed under Blog
January 31, 2011 10:15 am ET filed under Blog
January 31, 2011 10:13 am ET filed under Fact Check
With the eyes of the world on Egypt, the political talk shows on Sunday still found time to let the Republican leaders in Congress recite dishonest talking points about domestic policy. On NBC's Meet the Press, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) declared that President Obama's economic philosophy "doesn't work," even after 12 consecutive months of private-sector job growth, and repeated the false claim that the Affordable Care Act cuts $500 billion from Medicare. On Fox News Sunday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) described the Affordable Care Act as "job killing," despite the fact that nonpartisan experts disagree, and falsely stated that repealing the law would save money.
January 26, 2011 5:31 pm ET filed under Video
January 24, 2011 10:04 am ET filed under Blog
January 24, 2011 10:02 am ET filed under Fact Check
On the Sunday shows, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) showed why they hold leadership roles in the modern GOP: they are maestros of misinformation. Appearing on Fox News, McConnell dissembled about everything from corporate taxes to the Recovery Act. He even suggested that the private sector isn't growing right now (although 1.3 million new jobs in the past year make the claim laughable) and claimed that "nobody's talking about" voting against the debt ceiling, despite well over a dozen prominent Republicans who are on record opposing the debt vote. For his part, Cantor told NBC viewers that the entitlement program cuts in Rep. Paul Ryan's "Roadmap" are not "draconian," but the reality is that Ryan's plan would effectively dismantle the social safety net provided by Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Later on Meet the Press, former Bush adviser Karen Hughes told a whopper about job losses during President Obama's tenure.
December 20, 2010 5:25 pm ET filed under Blog
December 20, 2010 10:18 am ET filed under Blog
December 20, 2010 10:17 am ET filed under Fact Check
With "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and the DREAM Act each put to bed, the Sunday shows shifted focus squarely to the New START arms-reduction treaty with Russia. On Fox News Sunday, Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) claimed that Condaleeza Rice wants the Senate to amend the treaty, but Rice actually called for changes to the resolution of ratification — a move more in keeping with the Senate's "advise and consent" role. Furthermore, Kyl's underlying concerns about missile defense are not grounded in fact. On CNN, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) blamed the treaty's verification provisions for his decision to vote 'no,' and accused Democrats of "rushing" the process. But that's foolish — we've already gone more than a year without nuclear inspectors in Russia because the Senate is dragging its feet on START, and the vetting process that began in the spring has been unusually thorough compared to previous arms treaties. Elsewhere, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) said the judge who ruled the individual mandate unconstitutional got it right despite an error in his decision that one conservative legal expert called "obvious." And Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) ignored the Bush administration's terrible fiscal legacy in claiming that "every bit" of our debt problem comes from entitlements.
December 06, 2010 4:46 pm ET filed under Blog
December 06, 2010 12:12 pm ET filed under Blog
December 06, 2010 9:46 am ET filed under Blog
December 06, 2010 9:43 am ET filed under Fact Check
The lame duck session may be young, but lame Republican arguments on Sunday morning talk shows are a tradition in this town. This week, Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) deceived Fox News viewers about the Affordable Care Act's impact on the cost of health care; former House Speaker Newt Gingrich labeled Democrats' tax proposal "class warfare," when the data show tax breaks for the wealthy are bad for the economy (and worse for the debt); and Gingrich suggested that business owners aren't hiring because of tax uncertainty, but that doesn't explain the decade of economic stagnation that followed the "certainty" of the Bush tax cuts. Meanwhile, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) claimed Democrats are "just spending, spending, spending and taxing, taxing, taxing," despite the fact that Democrats passed 25 separate tax relief measures in 2009 alone. Hatch and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) each claimed that "700,000 small businesses" will be affected by higher tax rates on the wealthy, a number that counts athletes, authors, and Wall Street giants as "small." Finally, Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) flagrantly misrepresented a recent Gallup poll showing Americans want Bush's tax giveaways to the rich to end.