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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Abramowitz: Who’s telling the truth and who’s lying to the American public?

The following post is by TDS contributor Alan I. Abramowitz, author of The Polarized Public:
Are both sides equally guilty of making false or misleading statements, as media commentators often assume, or is one side more guilty than the other? Well, based on analyses by the investigative website Politi-Fact of statements made by President Obama and presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, there is a clear winner here.
As of today, Politi-Fact has rated 380 statements by President Obama and 141 by Mitt Romney, more than enough statements by each to come to a clear conclusion: Romney has been far more guilty of lying and misleading the public than the President. Thus far, 46% of Obama’s statements have been rated as “true” or “mostly true” compared with only 31% of Romney’s statements. On the other hand, 41% of Romney’s statements have been rated as “mostly false,” “false” or “pants on fire” compared with only 28% of the President’s statements.
And even though Politi-Fact has rated more than two times as many Obama statements as Romney statements, Romney has received almost three times as many dreaded “pants on fire” ratings, 13 versus 5 for the President. Almost 10 percent of Romney statements have been given the pants on fire designation compared with barely one percent of the President’s statements.

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