AJC Truth-o-Meter


Schumer wrong, gas prices sometimes do go down

What goes up must come down, the old saying goes. But, according to Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., that’s not the case for oil prices. As part of a round of appearances to tout a new Democratic economic-policy agenda, Schumer took a moment on “ABC’s This Week” to promote his party’s plan to curb mergers that aren’t in the interest of consumers....
Trump signed many laws, but Pence counts savings not yet realized

Trump signed many laws, but Pence counts savings not yet realized

Vice President Mike Pence says that when it comes to deregulation, President Donald Trump’s record is historic. But it’s not so easy to quantify laws that cut red tape. Experts we spoke with said that other presidents have cut through more red tape than Trump so far, citing the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980, and the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of...
PolitiFact: Claims on Medicare suit, Ga. business climate hold truth

PolitiFact: Claims on Medicare suit, Ga. business climate hold truth

PolitiFact last week looked at statements from two candidates for governor of Georgia, one about a Medicare-fraud lawsuit and one about the state’s climate for business. We also checked a Wisconsin senator’s statement that people pay a smaller portion of health care costs out of their own pockets today than they did decades ago. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions...
Sen. Johnson correct, health cost people pay themselves has fallen

Sen. Johnson correct, health cost people pay themselves has fallen

Amid the Senate’s efforts to pass a new health bill, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., has been adamant that spending on health care must come down. We examined whether he’s right about the big drop in the percentage of health care costs paid directly by the people served. The structure of American health care has changed plenty over the decades. According to a May 2008 article in the American...
Cagle calls Georgia No. 1 for business but rankings vary

Cagle calls Georgia No. 1 for business but rankings vary

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle has pitched his candidacy for Georgia governor as a promise to maintain Georgia’s reputation as one of the most business-friendly states in the country. “Keep Georgia the No. 1 state to do business,” the Republican’s campaign website says. In saying Georgia is the No. 1 state to do business, Cagle was citing a list put together by Site Selection, a magazine...
Evans can rightly claim big win in Medicare-fraud case

Evans can rightly claim big win in Medicare-fraud case

Rep. Stacey Evans, D-Smyrna, is running for governor of Georgia, and she’s touting a major Medicare fraud case she argued with her private law practice in a campaign video. She argued a civil lawsuit she argued alongside three other firms representing the U.S. government against DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., a leading provider of dialysis services in the United States. They represented two...
PolitiFact: Many crimes can be tied to collusion

PolitiFact: Many crimes can be tied to collusion

PolitiFact last week looked at statements about whether collusion is a crime, health insurance and Medicaid in particular. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. “Collusion is not illegal.” — Eric Bolling on Tuesday, July 11, 2017, in comments on “Fox News Specialists” Bolling’s statement came after Donald...
PolitiFact: Senator’s claim about Medicaid’s share of deficit is flawed

PolitiFact: Senator’s claim about Medicaid’s share of deficit is flawed

U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., defended the Senate health care bill’s curbing of Medicaid spending by calling Medicaid the single-biggest driver of the federal budget deficit. Toomey said the proposed cuts to Medicaid spending would slow the growth of entitlement programs, which he claimed are “driving the fiscal train wreck we’re on” in a “Morning Joe” interview...
PolitiFact: The actions of collusion could lead to a number of charges

PolitiFact: The actions of collusion could lead to a number of charges

Following Sean Hannity’s exclusive interview with Donald Trump Jr., Fox News host Eric Bolling repeated an argument the network’s personalities have used before — that even if someone from the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government, collusion itself is not a crime. Bolling and his “Fox News Specialists” co-hosts Eboni Williams and Kat Timpf appeared on the...
Trump adviser has a point, but shaky number, on health bill score

Trump adviser has a point, but shaky number, on health bill score

White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short said recently that the CBO is counting millions of nonexistent people in its estimate of the number of Americans who stand to lose insurance coverage under the Senate’s proposed health care bill. Short’s claim is a variation on a recent Republican talking point: The CBO report did not use its most recent baseline estimates when scoring...
PolitiFact: Trump wrong on CNN ratings, misstated gas price low

PolitiFact: Trump wrong on CNN ratings, misstated gas price low

PolitiFact last week looked at statements by the president on CNN ratings and low gas prices, and a comment by an that Trump had never promoted violence. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. CNN’s ratings are “way down.” — Donald Trump on Tuesday, June 27th, 2017 in a tweet Trump is flat wrong. Trump’s claim...
Trump’s words show that yes, he has encouraged violence

Trump’s words show that yes, he has encouraged violence

Has President Donald Trump promoted violence? At a White House briefing, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders answered with a definitive no. We’re not considering Trump’s tweet of a GIF showing him body-slamming a figure labeled CNN at a professional wrestling match, which Trump sent several days after Huckabee Sanders’ comment. However, the record shows at least one clear...
Trump hailed low price July 4, but gas price has been lower

Trump hailed low price July 4, but gas price has been lower

On July 4, one of the major travel weekends, President Donald Trump tweeted, “Gas prices are the lowest in the U.S. in over ten years! I would like to see them go even lower.” On the one hand, the American Automobile Association told PolitiFact that gasoline prices were the lowest they have been on Independence Day weekend in 12 years — since 2005. “Gas prices have been declining...
Trump way off on CNN ratings

Trump way off on CNN ratings

Days before President Donald Trump tweeted a video of him assaulting a CNN logo, Trump took aim at another place he said CNN was hurting: its ratings. “Fake News CNN is looking at big management changes now that they got caught falsely pushing their phony Russian stories,” Trump tweeted June 27, before adding: “Ratings way down!” The reality TV star-turned-president has a well-documented...
PolitiFact checks politicians’ comments on Senate health care bill

PolitiFact checks politicians’ comments on Senate health care bill

The Senate’s health care bill to replace Obamacare was the focus of lots of people last week, and PolitiFact, too. We looked at comments about the bill by three prominent politicians, and found a little truth. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. The Senate bill “hands enormous tax cuts to the rich and to the drug and insurance...

Ryan leaves much out in describing report on Senate bill’s effect

One of the complaints about the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, is it requires everyone to have insurance. To one degree or another, both the Senate and House bills do away with that requirement. When asked about the estimated 22 million people who would become uninsured under the Senate bill, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., emphasized the upside, giving people the freedom to choose...
PolitiFact: Coulter no-deport numbers were right, Trump tweets weren’t

PolitiFact: Coulter no-deport numbers were right, Trump tweets weren’t

PolitiFact last week found two recent Donald Trump tweets lacked full truth, and Ann Coulter’s comment on Trump’s immigration policy so far had the numbers right but described the effect as ‘amnesty,’ a term open to lots of interpretation. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. “The new Rasmussen Poll, one of...
PolitiFact: Coulter correct on no-deportation number; ‘amnesty’ is debatable

PolitiFact: Coulter correct on no-deportation number; ‘amnesty’ is debatable

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter, a staunch supporter of Donald Trump during the presidential campaign, called him out for stalling on immigration promises, including deportation of hundreds of thousands of young immigrants. Her tweet linked to an article from conservative news outlet The Daily Caller, headlined “Nearly 100,000 ‘Dreamers’ Granted Amnesty In Trump’s Opening Months&rdquo...
Trump’s tweet overlooks millions covered who weren’t before

Trump’s tweet overlooks millions covered who weren’t before

In its drive to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, the Trump administration turned to Twitter with a list of how bad the program is. An accompanying video described multiple failings. One of its assertions jumped out at us as particularly wrong: that Obamacare has led to fewer health insurance options for millions of Americans. Before passage of the Affordable...
Donald Trump tweet on 50 percent approval cherry-picks polling data

Donald Trump tweet on 50 percent approval cherry-picks polling data

President Donald Trump opened his first Father’s Day as president with a bright-and-early boast about his poll numbers. “The new Rasmussen Poll, one of the most accurate in the 2016 Election, just out with a Trump 50% Approval Rating. That’s higher than O’s #’s!” Rasmussen Reports retweeted the president’s message (and so did more than 21,000 other accounts)...
PolitiFact: Ossoff, Sanders on health bill; Handel on Iran: None ‘True’

PolitiFact: Ossoff, Sanders on health bill; Handel on Iran: None ‘True’

PolitiFact last week found Jon Ossoff’s assessment of an impact of Republicans’ health care bill went too far. So did Karen Handel in saying Iran has violated the 2015 nuclear deal. And Sen. Bernie Sanders was also off in his comparison of Democrats’ and Republicans’ allowing debate on Obamacare and its proposed replacement. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks...
PolitiFact: Sanders misleads in chart on health care bill processes

PolitiFact: Sanders misleads in chart on health care bill processes

Sen. Bernie Sanders tweeted a graphic that tried to make that argument in stark statistical terms that Senate Republicans are working in secret to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The graphic, which Sanders tweeted on June 13, 2017, limits its comparison to the Senate, and it looks at 2009 to 2010, when the Affordable Care Act was under consideration, and 2017, for the legislation the Senate...
PolitiFact: Handel says Iran broke nuclear deal; Monitors say Iran’s complying

PolitiFact: Handel says Iran broke nuclear deal; Monitors say Iran’s complying

In the campaign for Georgia’s 6th, Congressional District, Republican Karen Handel has been sharply critical of the 2015 agreement for Iran to scale back its nuclear program in exchange for relief from economic sanctions. “From the things that I have seen, they are and (have) already violated the terms of the deal,” Handel said in a June 8 debate against Democrat Jon Ossoff ahead...
PolitiFact: Ossoff presumes too much about GOP health care bill

PolitiFact: Ossoff presumes too much about GOP health care bill

The treatment of pre-existing conditions has emerged as one of the thorniest issues in health care, which dominated the final debate in the special election to fill Georgia’s 6th Congressional District seat. Democrat Jon Ossoff said the House Republican’s American Health Care Act, “guts protections against massive price hikes for Georgians with pre-existing conditions.” Both...
PolitiFact review: Trump overstated requirements of climate deal

PolitiFact review: Trump overstated requirements of climate deal

In addition to one of President Trump’s stated reasons for pulling the United States out of the Paris climate accord, PolitiFact last week paid attention to the Tuesday debate between candidates in Georgia’s 6th District congressional race. We looked at statements by Democrat Jon Ossoff about Republican Karen Handel’s past role in reduced funding for breast cancer screening and by...
Clinton bases deterred-voter claim on flawed report

Clinton bases deterred-voter claim on flawed report

While reflecting on the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton was asked why she didn’t campaign more in Wisconsin, a state that hadn’t gone Republican since 1984, but one she lost to Donald Trump. Appearing May 31 at a conference in California sponsored by the Vox Media site Recode, Clinton replied by saying “we thought we were doing really well in Wisconsin,” but &ldquo...
Handel’s, Ossoff’s claims on opponent’s fund sources contain truth

Handel’s, Ossoff’s claims on opponent’s fund sources contain truth

The special election to fill a closely contested Georgia congressional seat has broken a campaign cash record. With about $36 million spent, it is now the most expensive race for Congress the country has ever seen. The seat, left vacant when President Donald Trump named Tom Price as secretary of health and human services, had been a solid Republican seat for years. But Democrats think they may be...
Gore correct on Florida drought, but it’s not too unusual

Gore correct on Florida drought, but it’s not too unusual

Criticizing President Donald Trump’s “reckless” decision to pull out of the Paris climate change agreement, Former Vice President Al Gore said evidence abounds that climate change is real, and people “don’t have to rely on the virtually unanimous opinion of the scientific community anymore. “Mother nature is telling us every night on the TV news now is like a nature...
PolitiFact: Handel overstates U.S. money in Iran aiding terrorists

PolitiFact: Handel overstates U.S. money in Iran aiding terrorists

Karen Handel said in the debate Tuesday night that in the Barack Obama-era deal with Iran, “Nearly $2 billion in cash was flown over to Iran, money that the Obama administration has admitted is being used for terrorists and to support further activities there.” Handel’s staff pointed to a March 17, 2016, letter from the State Department saying Iran had received about $1.7 billion...
PolitiFact: Ossoff claim about Handel, breast screenings has some basis

PolitiFact: Ossoff claim about Handel, breast screenings has some basis

The Democratic contender for Georgia’s open congressional seat, Jon Ossoff, accused his Republican opponent of spearheading a controversial decision to cut off funding for breast cancer screenings. Ossoff charged that Karen Handel, while working as a top official at Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation, worked to pull funding for screenings performed by Planned Parenthood. &ldquo...
PolitiFact: GOP ad about ISIS wrong; so is Sanders on Trump tax plan

PolitiFact: GOP ad about ISIS wrong; so is Sanders on Trump tax plan

Last week PolitiFact looked at Health and Human Secretary Tom Price’s claim about new federal spending to combat the opioid epidemic, a political ad’s claim about ISIS infiltrators in the United States, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ interpretation of how President Trump’s tax proposals would affect three very rich families. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions...
PolitiFact: Sanders misstates impact on rich of Trump’s tax plan

PolitiFact: Sanders misstates impact on rich of Trump’s tax plan

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., called President Donald Trump’s budget a massive transfer of wealth from working families, the elderly, children, the sick and the poor to the top 1 percent. “Why is it more important to give a $100 billion tax break to 3 of the wealthiest families than to feed, house and educate 15 million people?” Sanders tweeted May 25. The accusation runs away with...
PolitiFact: Ad against Ossoff incorrect about Syrians ‘infiltrating’ U.S. for ISIS

PolitiFact: Ad against Ossoff incorrect about Syrians ‘infiltrating’ U.S. for ISIS

An ad by the National Republican Congressional Committee against 6th District Democratic congressional candidate Jon Ossoff begins, “ISIS is infiltrating America and using Syrians to do it,” and continues, “The FBI warned we can’t safely screen every Syrian. Yet Jon Ossoff’s liberal party bosses brought 10,000 Syrian refugees to America. And Ossoff supports their dangerous...
PolitiFact: New budget funds aren’t whole story on opioid epidemic

PolitiFact: New budget funds aren’t whole story on opioid epidemic

Tom Price, secretary for Health and Human Services, and Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump, reiterated Trump’s commitment to end the opioid crisis when they visited New Hampshire this month a week after it was announced that the administration planned to cut the Office of National Drug Control Policy’s budget by $364 million, about 95 percent. The proposed cut in Trump&rsquo...
PolitiFact checked claims on prisons, leaked emails and Ossoff donors

PolitiFact checked claims on prisons, leaked emails and Ossoff donors

Last week PolitiFact checked out a Senator’s claim about the U.S. prison population, a former House Speaker’s claim about leaked Democratic Party emails and a murder victim, and an ad about donations from California to Jon Ossoff’s campaign for the 6th Congressional District of Georgia. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www.politifact...
PolitiFact: ad misstates Ossoff’s Calif. aid: More donors, not dollars

PolitiFact: ad misstates Ossoff’s Calif. aid: More donors, not dollars

Both sides have launched attack ads in the race for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District. Recently, Democrats accused Republican Karen Handel of wallowing in administrative bloat. (We rated that Mostly False). Now, the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan, has an ad that paints Democrat Jon Ossoff as beholden more to people in California than voters...
Evidence doesn’t back Gingrich’s accusation about leaked emails

Evidence doesn’t back Gingrich’s accusation about leaked emails

It’s been several months since the intelligence community concluded Russia tampered in the election in ways that included stealing Democratic Party emails and giving them to WikiLeaks. Yet an unfounded conspiracy theory persists that WikiLeaks got the emails from a Democratic National Committee staffer who was shot and killed in July 2016. Seth Rich, who worked on voter access projects for the...
Inmate population did decrease during Obama’s presidency

Inmate population did decrease during Obama’s presidency

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently urged federal prosecutors to take a more aggressive approach to charging defendants, including seeking mandatory minimum sentences. The guidelines, signed May 10, moved in a different direction than the Department of Justice had taken under President Barack Obama. Under Obama, the department focused on prosecuting the most serious crimes and finding ways to...
Gauging Trump remark on bird deductions, Democrats’ ad against Handel

Gauging Trump remark on bird deductions, Democrats’ ad against Handel

Topics of claims by or about politicians that PolitiFact took a look at last week included tax deductions for birds, the potential impact of the Republican health care bill on veterans, and Karen Handel’s budget history as Georgia secretary of state. You might be surprised at which was the only one rated true. Here are abbreviated versions of our fact checks. Full versions can be found at www...
PolitiFact: Democrats’ ad on Handel office budgets misleads

PolitiFact: Democrats’ ad on Handel office budgets misleads

The race in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District tests whether Democrats can turn anger toward President Donald Trump into votes, and whether Republicans can transcend that anger in a district that has long been safe GOP territory. With a little over a month before the June 20 special election, the Democratic ad campaign went on the attack. Both the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee...
PolitiFact: Senator exaggerates GOP health care bill’s impact on vets

PolitiFact: Senator exaggerates GOP health care bill’s impact on vets

Among Democrats’ many gripes with the House Republican health care bill is that it’s missing a special protection for veterans. “What does Trumpcare do? Yank tax credits away from veterans unlike any other American,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., at a May 9 press conference. This issue is more complex and less far-reaching than Blumenthal’s exaggerated one-liner...
PolitiFact: Yes, Trump knows, some tax deductions can be for the birds

PolitiFact: Yes, Trump knows, some tax deductions can be for the birds

One line in President Donald Trump’s interview with The Economist posted on May 11, that raised our eyebrows was about tax deductions for birds. “I get more deductions,” Trump said. “I mean I can tell you this, I get more deductions. They have deductions for birds flying across America. They have deductions for everything.” At first, we were mystified, but he’s...
PolitiFact: Loudermilk’s assertion on women’s health care incomplete

PolitiFact: Loudermilk’s assertion on women’s health care incomplete

A PolitiFact reader asked us to fact-check an email Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., sent to constituents just after the House passed the latest health care bill. We zeroed in on part of a “frequently asked questions” section that sought to explain some of the bill’s provisions: Loudermilk’s office told us the information in the FAQ section came from the office of House Speaker...
PolitiFact: Price, Loudermilk comments on health bill mostly false

PolitiFact: Price, Loudermilk comments on health bill mostly false

Last week PolitiFact checked out two statements about the latest health care bill and a comment by the attorney general about treatment in criminal cases for noncitizens here illegally. None measured up in our findings to full truthfulness. Abbreviated versions of our fact checks are below. Full versions can be found at www.politifact.com. “We have got 20 million folks out there across this...
PolitiFact: Sessions omits some info on prosecuting noncitizens

PolitiFact: Sessions omits some info on prosecuting noncitizens

Attorney General Jeff Sessions told New York law enforcement officers that “we’ve seen district attorneys openly brag about not charging cases appropriately under the laws of our country, so that provides an opportunity for individuals not to be convicted of a crime that might lead to deportation. Some have advertised that they will charge a criminal alien with a lesser offense than presumably...
PolitiFact: Price has numbers right, maybe not motive, on Obamacare tax penalty

PolitiFact: Price has numbers right, maybe not motive, on Obamacare tax penalty

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price argued that many people are uninsured because they don’t like Obamacare. “When I talk to the doctors that I used to practice with right here in Atlanta, what they tell me is that the current system isn’t working for them or for their patients,” Price said in a May 7 interview on CNN’s “State of the Union.” &ldquo...
Did Paul Ryan flip-flop on how to pass a big health care bill?

Did Paul Ryan flip-flop on how to pass a big health care bill?

As legislation to dramatically overhaul the Affordable Care Act neared a vote in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives, critics said that Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., was hypocritical in how he brought a revised bill to the floor. In March, a bill known as the American Health Care Act was pulled from the floor by GOP leaders because it didn’t have enough votes to pass. That was...
PolitiFact: Perdue’s claims about new school-food rules mostly false

PolitiFact: Perdue’s claims about new school-food rules mostly false

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue went to an elementary school lunchroom in Virginia to announce new rules for the food schools serve. Under the banner of trimming the childhood obesity rate, combating rising levels of diabetes and other health problems, Congress passed and the Obama administration implemented new targets for schools. Perdue gave schools more time to comply in two areas...
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