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AJC Truth-o-Meter


Comments on steel, voter turnout and Hitler: None true

Last week we looked at three statements that all missed the mark pretty widely on truthfulness: the White House press secretary’s statement about Hitler’s use of chemical weapons, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ claim about low voter turnout in the recent presidential election, and President Donald Trump’s assertion about requiring all pipelines to be made of American steel. Abbreviated...
Trump overstates effect of memo of American steel in pipelines

Trump overstates effect of memo of American steel in pipelines

In Kenosha, Wis., on April 18, President Donald Trump said in an interview with WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee: “I approved a pipeline, right, called the Keystone pipeline, and other pipelines. And I want them to use American steel, American product. I want it manufactured here. And I made those changes just before we signed it. I said, Where’s the steel coming from? So...
Sanders wrong about 2016 voter turnout: It wasn’t lowest

Sanders wrong about 2016 voter turnout: It wasn’t lowest

Was voter turnout in the 2016 presidential election the lowest in decades? Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who ran in the Democratic primaries before losing the nomination to Hillary Clinton, said so on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. Sanders said, in part, “So many of our people are giving up on the political process. It is very frightening. In the last presidential election...
Claims in 6th District race offer incomplete pictures

Claims in 6th District race offer incomplete pictures

Last week PolitiFact checked a couple of claims in the special election to fill Tom Price’s seat in Georgia’s 6th congressional district. Neither presented the whole truth. We also looked at a Democratic senator’s statement about Republican filibusters, and the whole truth was elusive there, too. Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Full versions can be found at www...
Handel’s claim of balancing Fulton budget leaves out some points

Handel’s claim of balancing Fulton budget leaves out some points

In the special election to fill Tom Price’s former House seat, Republican Karen Handel often reminds voters of a key line in her political resume. “As chairman of the Fulton board of commissioners, I turned a $100 million deficit into a balanced budget,” she said in an 11Alive news report. The claim is the second sentence on her biography page on her website. Did Handel actually...
Ad citing Al Jazeera payments to Ossoff uses selective information

Ad citing Al Jazeera payments to Ossoff uses selective information

Jon Ossoff is a Democratic candidate to replace Republican Tom Price in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, a seat no Democrat has held since 1979. The Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan, posted a web video that ties Ossoff to Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based news organization. The focus of this fact-check is the ad’s statement that Al Jazeera...
Spicer comment overlooked Hitler’s infamous gas chambers

Spicer comment overlooked Hitler’s infamous gas chambers

Sean Spicer turned heads in the White House briefing room last week when he wrongly claimed Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons. Spicer, President Donald Trump’s top spokesman, was discussing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s attacks on his own people. “You had someone who is despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons,” Spicer told reporters...
Senator has a point, but ‘filibuster’ count misses mark

Senator has a point, but ‘filibuster’ count misses mark

Republicans changed Senate rules to break a Democratic filibuster and confirm Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, and blamed Democrats for necessitating the change along the way. On “Fox News Sunday” this week, Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., said both parties are to blame, noting that Republicans engaged in the same type of action during President Barack Obama’s first term, when Republicans...

Trump’s Syria stance did change; Ossoff overstates experience

Last week PolitiFact considered a Georgia congressional candidate’s characterization of his national-security experience, President Trump’s description of Obama’s economic stimulus and Trump’s boast that he had received environmental awards. Our findings varied. Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. “I&rsquo...

Trump can claim some credit for environmental awards

At a Tuesday town hall with CEOs, President Donald Trump said his administration will be able to get rid of 90 to 95 percent of regulations “and still have the same kind of protection. “We want safety and we want environmental protection,” Trump said April 4. “I’ve won awards on environmental protection. I’m a big believer, believe it or not. But we want that kind...

PolitiFact: Stimulus focused more on tax cuts than infrastructure

Just over eight years ago, President Barack Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, more commonly known as the stimulus. Its supporters give it a measure of credit for making the Great Recession milder than it could have been. But critics, including President Donald Trump at a town hall Tuesday for CEOs, say it was a whole lot of nothing. “You know, there was a very large infrastructure...
Ossoff doesn’t give full picture of his Capitol Hill experience

Ossoff doesn’t give full picture of his Capitol Hill experience

In Georgia’s closely watched congressional special election to succeed Republican Tom Price in the U.S. House, Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff has touted his policy experience in national security — and taken heat for allegedly embellishing it. A news release announcing his campaign on Jan. 5 reads: “A Georgia native who grew up in the Sixth District, Ossoff served Georgia as a national...

‘News’ stories on cancer comment, Muslim culture ban, were fake

We fact-checked a couple of fake-news items involving Georgia politicians last week. One was a callous remark about cancer patients purportedly from Tom Price, the former Georgia congressman who’s now Secretary of Health and Human Services. Another related to a bill briefly proposed last year by State Rep. Jason Spencer to ban wearing burqas, niqabs and veils. We also examined another health...
No evidence that Medicaid health outcomes ‘worst’ in world

No evidence that Medicaid health outcomes ‘worst’ in world

Rep. Ted Yoho, a Florida Republican and critic of the Affordable Care Act who opposed his party’s health care plan, described Medicaid as a worldwide failure. The ACA passed under President Barack Obama included the expansion of Medicaid, which provides health coverage for about 74 million poor Americans. (Yoho’s state of Florida rejected the expansion.) “With the Affordable Care...
Georgia did not ‘ban Muslim culture,’ as fake-news websites claimed

Georgia did not ‘ban Muslim culture,’ as fake-news websites claimed

A post that appears to have originated from fake news purveyors in Macedonia falsely said Georgia (our state, not the country) outlawed “Muslim culture.” A March 13 post on USANewsPost.us carried the headline, “Georgia becomes first state to ban Muslim culture in historic move to restore Western values.” Facebook users flagged the post as potentially fake. PolitiFact Georgia...
PolitiFact: ‘News’ site made up words attributed to Tom Price

PolitiFact: ‘News’ site made up words attributed to Tom Price

A fake news story pegged to a real forum with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price falsely quotes him as saying it’s better for cancer patients to die than to waste taxpayer money. “Tom Price: ‘It’s better for our budget if cancer patients die more quickly,’ ” reads the headline on a March 16, 2017, post on USPOLN.com. The post was flagged by Facebook...
PolitiFact: Trump’s budget cuts afterschool programs. Do they work?

PolitiFact: Trump’s budget cuts afterschool programs. Do they work?

White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney triggered a storm of complaints when he defended elimination of a large federal after-school program. When asked in a press conference about the impact on students in Pennsylvania, Mulvaney couched his answer as pertaining to “after-school programs generally.” “They’re supposed to be educational programs, right,” he said March 16...

U.S. Sen. David Perdue’s mostly right about Power Africa’s success

President Donald Trump’s budget outline is just the starting point for debate, but the cuts he’s seeking in foreign aid are among the deepest for any government activity. Under his plan, overall spending for the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development would fall by about 28 percent. Congress controls the purse strings, of course. And, in the Senate, David Perdue...
PolitFact: Is Kingston right about CBO’s prognastication skills?

PolitFact: Is Kingston right about CBO’s prognastication skills?

“I remember years ago looking at a CBO report that in 1964 predicted that Medicare would cost $9 billion 10 years later. And I think it was already over $100 billion at that point.” — Former U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston in a March 12 CNN interview Supporters of the House GOP’s proposal to overhaul the health care system are throwing cold water on a report from the nonpartisan Congressional...
PolitiFact: Did Tom Price understate how many insured by Obamacare?

PolitiFact: Did Tom Price understate how many insured by Obamacare?

Republicans supporting the House GOP’s effort to repeal and replace Obamacare are pushing back on criticism that the plan would strip health insurance away from an estimated 6 million to 15 million Americans. In comments on the Sunday shows March 12, surrogates for President Donald Trump drew a distinction between being insured and being able to access affordable health care. Health and Human...
Fact-checkers take a look at Trump, McConnell and Schumer

Fact-checkers take a look at Trump, McConnell and Schumer

President-elect Donald Trump, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer. They all took a recent ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter, courtesy of PolitiFact and PolitiFact Georgia. Want to see how they fared? Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com/georgia/. Want to comment on our rulings or suggest one...
Trump mostly correct about the Russian hackers and the RNC

Trump mostly correct about the Russian hackers and the RNC

After months of discounting Russian involvement in the election, President-elect Donald Trump admitted that Russia was behind the campaign hacks and document leaks. “As far as hacking, I think it was Russia,” he said at a Jan. 11 press conference from Trump Tower in New York, his first press conference in several months. Government intelligence agents have concluded that Russia tried to...
Trump wrong about public’s view of his income tax returns

Trump wrong about public’s view of his income tax returns

In his first press conference since July 2016, President-elect Donald Trump scolded reporters for asking about his tax returns, saying members of the media are the only ones who care about the records. Trump said on Jan. 11, 2017, that he had no financial ties or business deals with Russia. He then dismissed the concerns of a reporter who asked Trump whether he would be releasing his tax returns to...
Pence criticism of Obamacare rate hikes swings wide on dollar amount

Pence criticism of Obamacare rate hikes swings wide on dollar amount

As part of his visit to Capitol Hill to kick off Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Vice President-elect Mike Pence blasted the law — also known as Obamacare — for its impact on ordinary Americans’ finances. “Right now, the American people are laboring under extraordinary increases in premiums,” Pence told reporters. “The average deductible for...
PolitiFact fact-checkers rate Obama’s major campaign promises

PolitiFact fact-checkers rate Obama’s major campaign promises

Barack Obama amassed a record of more than 500 campaign promises when he campaigned in 2008 and 2012. Some were almost oddly specific on policy (giving Al Gore a role on global warming, or increasing funding for programs that conserve lands and habitat for select species such as the Osceola turkey). A couple were light-hearted (get his daughters a puppy). Other pledges — ending the wars in Iraq...
Trump on target with criticism of foreign-made Chevy Cruze

Trump on target with criticism of foreign-made Chevy Cruze

President-elect Donald Trump put General Motors on notice for tariff-free imports of vehicles from Mexico, warning of heavy taxes if vehicles are not instead manufactured in the United States. “General Motors is sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border,” Trump tweeted Jan. 3. “Make in U.S.A. or pay big border tax!” Imposing hefty...
Fake “news” article claims Air Force One crew refuses flight

Fake “news” article claims Air Force One crew refuses flight

The claims circulated on social media that Air Force One won’t transport the Obamas for vacation are flights of fancy. The website BuzzFeedUSA.com, which appears to be registered to an address in Macedonia and has no connection to the real BuzzFeed.com, posted an article on Dec. 20 with the headline, “Breaking: Crew of Air Force One Refuses to Fly Obama 6000 miles ‘Just to Play Golf...
Fact-checkers take on guns, fake news sites and House Speaker Ryan

Fact-checkers take on guns, fake news sites and House Speaker Ryan

U.S. gun violence, a few fake news sites and U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan. They all took a recent ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter, courtesy of PolitiFact and PolitiFact Georgia. Want to see how they fared? Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Want to comment on our rulings or suggest one of your own? Just go to our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/politifact.georgia). You can also follow...
Obama breaks campaign pledge of more government contract transparency

Obama breaks campaign pledge of more government contract transparency

In his 2008 campaign, President Barack Obama promised to produce a public database that would show information about federal contractors and their lobbying habits. But Obama’s proposed “contracts and influence” database never came into being. He made some effort to make federal contractor spending and other data more transparent. For example, his administration created the website...
Fake news strikes again with tall take about a tell-all Obama book

Fake news strikes again with tall take about a tell-all Obama book

Social media users continue to be fooled by a fake news story touting a book allegedly written by a Secret Service agent claiming President Barack Obama is both Muslim and gay, but the entire claim should be cataloged under fiction. “Secret Service Agent Says Obama Is Muslim & Gay In New Tell-All Book,” the headline on a story from the site NewsExaminer.net reads. The post is dated only...
Obama compromises on 2012 promised fixes to voting system

Obama compromises on 2012 promised fixes to voting system

Tweets about illegal voting and hacked voting machines may grab headlines, but the average voter is arguably more disrupted by a breakdown in the boring mechanics of running the polls. After long lines marred the 2012 election, President Barack Obama reassured voters that it would get better during his acceptance speech: “I want to thank every American who participated in this election. Whether...
Sanders’ statement about older workers needs more context

Sanders’ statement about older workers needs more context

At a post-election town hall meeting in Kenosha, Wis., 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders opined on why Republican Donald Trump is headed for the Oval Office and not the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton. “One of the arguments as to why Trump won is the belief that most of – or many of — his supporters are sexist or are racist or are homophobes. I happen not...
Price on target about federal budget bills missing targets

Price on target about federal budget bills missing targets

Before Georgia Rep. Tom Price was nominated for a position in Donald Trump’s cabinet, he was in charge of the House Budget Committee. The physician-turned-congressman has been an outspoken critic of Obamacare — and Washington gridlock. Price will continue to be the chairman until he is confirmed for a Cabinet position by the Senate. At a recent event in Washington D.C. at the Brookings...
Trump, Newt and Uber all take a ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter

Trump, Newt and Uber all take a ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter

Donald Trump, Newt Gingrich, the governor of Florida and the ride-sharing service Uber. They all took a recent ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter, courtesy of PolitiFact and PolitiFact Georgia. Want to see how they fared? Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Want to comment on our rulings or suggest one of your own? Just go to our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/politifact.georgia). You can...
No, Republicans are not trying to immediately cut social security

No, Republicans are not trying to immediately cut social security

A newly introduced bill to overhaul Social Security has prompted a wave of urgent appeals to current and future Social Security beneficiaries to prevent the program from being gutted. A reader noticed an Internet post being widely shared and asked us if it was accurate. The post in question, from a website called the New Century Times, is headlined, “Republicans Looking To Cut Social Security...
Obama keeps early campaign promise about high schoolers

Obama keeps early campaign promise about high schoolers

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Barack Obama said he would “set a goal of increasing the number of high school students taking college level or AP courses by 50 percent in the coming years.” AP, or advanced placement, courses are taken in high school and can be used for college credit if the student earns a high enough score on the final exam. On this metric, Obama hit his target...
Gingrich right: Death used to beat most people to Social Security age

Gingrich right: Death used to beat most people to Social Security age

Social Security today is not the program President Franklin D. Roosevelt had in mind when he signed it into law in 1935, according to former Georgia congressman and House Speaker Newt Gingrich. “We adopted the modern Social Security system at a time when the average person died before they were old enough to get Social Security,” he said during a Dec. 2 interview on “The John Fredericks...
Trump and fake news take a ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter

Trump and fake news take a ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter

President-elect Donald Trump, his pick for health secretary and fake news all took =a spin on the Truth-O-Meter recently, courtesy of PolitiFact and PolitiFact Georgia. Want to see how they fared? Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below.Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com/georgia. Want to comment on our rulings or suggest your own? Go to our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/politifact...
President fails on campaign promise to cut U.S. oil consumption

President fails on campaign promise to cut U.S. oil consumption

President Obama promised in 2010 to “reduce oil consumption by 35 percent, or 10 million barrels, by 2030.” But U.S. oil consumption has continued to rise. Earlier this year, we rated the promise Stalled, as new laws were passed, or in the works, to attempt to bring down oil consumption. But because the promise lasts until 2030, there weren’t any final numbers. The numbers still...
Price wants to overhaul Medicare not get rid of it

Price wants to overhaul Medicare not get rid of it

Donald Trump’s pick for Health and Human Services secretary, Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., has a plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. But a Democratic website says he wants to go further and nix Medicare, the federal health insurance program for seniors and the disabled. “Trump’s Health Secretary Pick Wants a Medicare Phase Out by Summer 2017,” reads a headline on a...
Pence mostly right about Trump’s ability to win U.S. counties

Pence mostly right about Trump’s ability to win U.S. counties

With a split in the 2016 Electoral College and popular votes, there’s been an unusual amount of jockeying this year over how to frame the Election Day results. On the Dec. 4, 2016, edition of NBC’s Meet the Press, Vice President-elect Mike Pence used the yardstick of counties won to explain why Donald Trump’s victory was a watershed. “To be around Donald Trump, as you know...
Fact-checkers look at Trump, Stein, Clinton flag burning

Fact-checkers look at Trump, Stein, Clinton flag burning

Donald Trump, Jill Stein, bloggers blogging about Lady Gaga and a conservative website that stated Hillary Clinton wanted to jail flag burners when she was a senator. They all took a recent ride on the AJC Truth-O-Meter, courtesy of PolitiFact and PolitiFact Georgia. Want to see how they fared? Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com/georgia/...
No, Lady Gaga will not cover her face until Trump is fired

No, Lady Gaga will not cover her face until Trump is fired

A story about recording artist Lady Gaga announcing she would cover her face until President-elect Donald Trump is out of office appears to be masking the truth. A Nov. 25, 2016, post on TheRightists.com claimed that Gaga — née Stefani Germanotta — revealed her protest plan on a CBS Sunday Morning interview. The original post, with the headline “Lady Gaga Reveals Plan To Cover...
It’s True, Clinton as senator did want to jail flag burners

It’s True, Clinton as senator did want to jail flag burners

One thing has become apparent in the world of President-elect Donald Trump — no incendiary tweet goes to waste. Just this week, Trump lobbed an early-morning zinger across the globe, opining on Twitter: “Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag - if they do, there must be consequences - perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail!” The chattering class lit up the morning...
U.S. Rep. Tom Price on the Truth-O-Meter over the years

U.S. Rep. Tom Price on the Truth-O-Meter over the years

U.S. Rep. Tom Price, a orthopedic surgeon who has represented his Roswell-based House district for 12 years, was picked Tuesday by President-elect Donald Trump’s to be scretary of health and human services. Price has been an outspoken critic of the Affordable Care Act as well as the federal tax code and the soaring national debt. The congressman has also spent some time on the AJC Truth-O-Meter...
Cruz largely correct on growing number of political arrests in Cuba

Cruz largely correct on growing number of political arrests in Cuba

The son of a Cuban immigrant, Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said that he hoped President-elect Donald Trump could press for change for Cubans following Fidel Castro’s death. But in a Nov. 27 interview on ABC’s This Week, Cruz expressed some skepticism that anything will be better under Castro’s brother Raúl Castro, who began taking over in 2006. “What the Obama administration...
No clear information on number of “green” jobs created by Obama

No clear information on number of “green” jobs created by Obama

(Editor’s note: As President Obama nears the end of his final term, PolitiFact will be rating the last of the more than 500 campaign promises he made during his 2008 and 2012 campaigns. For a full list of those promises and our ratings on the Obameter, please see http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/obameter\.) During his 2008 campaign, President Obama promised to “create 5...
Obama fails to deliver on manufacturing jobs or exports promise

Obama fails to deliver on manufacturing jobs or exports promise

After a presidential election decided by Rust Belt voters’ Republican shift, it’s an opportune time to evaluate President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election promise to “create 1 million new manufacturing jobs by the end of 2016” and to “double American exports over the next five years.” First, manufacturing jobs. Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that between...
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