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[Barney Frank talks 'bundling' on Colbert Report]

The Trail

Barney Frank talks 'bundling' on Colbert Report

On the "Colbert Report," last night, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) made the case for a Consumer Financial Protection Agency. "If the Founding Fathers were really worried about mortgage bundling or ATM fees wouldn't they have said so in the Constitution?" asked "Colbert Report" host Stephen Colbert asked. 10:16 AM ET | More »

Archive: John McCain

Farewell Edition

The Fact Checker is shutting up shop on the last day of the 2008 election campaign. For this farewell edition, he selects a few of his favorite bloopers and howlers from the long, winding campaign trail.

Posted on November 3, 2008 at 09:55 AM ET | Comments (34)

John McCain's 'Trick or Treat'?

The McCain camp has come up with a new villain to scare away votes from Barack Obama on the eve of Halloween: a professor of Middle East studies at Columbia University. Boo!

Posted on October 30, 2008 at 06:13 PM ET | Comments (120)

Palin and the Maybe Pipeline

The McCain-Palin campaign talks about the "$40 billion" Alaska natural gas pipeline as if it is a done deal--when it does not even have a price tag.

Posted on October 29, 2008 at 06:31 PM ET | Comments (21)

John McCain and the Middle Class

Barack Obama claims that the McCain tax plan will do nothing for "100 million American families." Where does he get his figures from?

Posted on October 28, 2008 at 07:09 PM ET | Comments (48)

Obama's Redistribution 'Bombshell'

The McCain campaign is attempting to paint Barack Obama as a "Socialist" on the basis of a 2001 interview in which he spoke positively about "the redistribution of wealth." But the quotes have been somewhat garbled.

Posted on October 27, 2008 at 04:56 PM ET | Comments (97)

McCain, Obama, Biden, and JFK

The McCain camp has seized on an unguarded comment by Joe Biden to reintroduce the experience argument into the closing days of the presidential campaign. What do Obama and McCain have to learn from JFK and the Cuban missile crisis?

Posted on October 23, 2008 at 04:26 PM ET | Comments (28)

Just a Four-Letter Word?

John McCain has twisted the meaning of Obama quotes by the addition of a seemingly innocuous, four-letter word. The Illinois senator never said that William Ayers was "just" a guy in his neighborhood.

Posted on October 22, 2008 at 01:52 PM ET | Comments (61)

Obama Scares Seniors

Barack Obama is trying to convince American retirees that their Medicare benefits will be slashed under a McCain administration. He is relying on some highly selective quotes.

Posted on October 21, 2008 at 02:03 PM ET | Comments (91)

Fighting for Joe the Plumber

John McCain claims that "Joe the Plumber" will end up subsidizing non-taxpayers under the Obama tax plan. It is a classic straw man argument.

Posted on October 20, 2008 at 04:14 PM ET | Comments (72)

Final Presidential Debate Fact Check

Join the Fact Checker and Friends for live truth squadding of the final presidential debate from Hofstra University.

Posted on October 15, 2008 at 08:12 PM ET | Comments (321)

'Jobs, Baby, Jobs'

The Obama and McCain campaigns have provided widely different estimates about the cost of a new Obama job creation plan. The Fact Checker adjudicates.

Posted on October 14, 2008 at 05:44 PM ET | Comments (87)

Did Obama "lie" about Ayers?

The McCain campaign claims that Barack Obama "lied" about his relationship with the former Weather Underground leader Bill Ayers. It would be more accurate to say that he "told the truth slowly."

Posted on October 10, 2008 at 04:48 PM ET | Comments (880)

Nashville Presidential Debate part II

More glitches and misstatements from the presidential debate. Obama misfires on health savings; McCain twists his rival's health care plan.

Posted on October 8, 2008 at 01:42 PM ET | Comments (14)

Second Presidential Debate: Nashville

Join the Fact Checker and friends for live coverage of tonight's presidential debate from Nashville.

Posted on October 7, 2008 at 05:02 PM ET | Comments (199)

McCain fudges his Navy record

John McCain claims that his first plane crash, back in December 1960, was the result of engine failure. A U.S. Navy investigation makes clear that it was caused by pilot error.

Posted on October 6, 2008 at 11:26 AM ET | Comments (473)

VP Debate Part II

More bloopers from the vice presidential debate, including gaps in both candidates' foreign policy expertise.

Posted on October 3, 2008 at 06:36 PM ET | Comments (79)

Vice Presidential Debate: St Louis

The Fact Checker and Friends truth-squad the vice presidential debate from St. Louis. Join us on-line.

Posted on October 2, 2008 at 07:35 PM ET | Comments (149)

The Art of Meaningless Spin

In post-debate spin, both candidates are accusing the other of failing to use words like "middle class" or "victory." So what?

Posted on September 29, 2008 at 11:35 AM ET | Comments (25)

McCain 'Works the Refs'

The McCain campaign has accused the New York Times of being "150 percent in the tank" for Barack Obama but has been unable to demonstrate factual errors in the newspaper's reporting on ties between campaign manager Rick Davis and failed mortgage giants.

Posted on September 24, 2008 at 06:10 PM ET | Comments (80)

Obama misleads on Social Security

Barack Obama has distorted John McCain's position on Social Security reform -- just as McCain has twisted Obama's words on raising taxes.

Posted on September 22, 2008 at 10:54 AM ET | Comments (93)

Obama's Fannie Mae 'Connection'

The McCain campaign is attempting to link Barack Obama to the mortgage crisis by claiming that he received advice on housing and mortgages from the former head of Fannie Mae, Franklin Raines. The evidence for the Obama-Raines link is pretty flimsy.

Posted on September 19, 2008 at 10:24 AM ET | Comments (1387)

McCain, Obama Mislead on Immigration

Both John McCain and Barack Obama have made misleading statements on immigration reform in an attempt to win support from Hispanic-Americans.

Posted on September 19, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (91)

Taxing Promises

The McCain campaign has repeatedly accused Barack Obama of planning to raise taxes on middle-income families. The claim is based on flimsy evidence.

Posted on September 17, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (90)

Obama Confuses his Verb Tenses

An Obama campaign ad claims that top McCain advisers "lobby" for special interests. The Democratic presidential candidate is grammatically challenged.

Posted on September 15, 2008 at 12:02 PM ET | Comments (193)

Weekend edition

John McCain claims that his running mate, Sarah Palin, never took earmarks as governor of Alaska. That's like trying to argue that black is white.

Posted on September 12, 2008 at 05:44 PM ET | Comments (207)

Spreading dirt on Palin--and Obama

Three pinocchios for a McCain campaign ad claiming that Barack Obama has "air-dropped a mini-army" of opposition researchers into Alaska in an attempt to "destroy" Sarah Palin.

Posted on September 12, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (101)

McCain attacks on education

John McCain says that Obama's only accomplishment in education policy is passing a sex education bill for kindergartners. That is a gross distortion.

Posted on September 10, 2008 at 12:15 PM ET | Comments (184)

Convention Edition

The Fact Checker is back, with a look at some of the more questionable claims aired at the Democratic and Republican conventions.

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 09:20 AM ET | Comments (57)

McCain on equal pay

The presumptive Republican nominee says his record proves that he is committed to "equal pay for equal work." But he has opposed legislation to allow victims of salary discrimination to sue employers beyond a 180-day deadline.

Posted on July 11, 2008 at 04:32 PM ET | Comments (273)

From GITMO to the Battlefield

John McCain claims that 30 released Guantanamo detainees have "tried to attack America again." The presumptive Republican nominee is twisting the facts.

Posted on June 30, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (173)

What the President Didn't Know

Both Obama and McCain have pointed to JFK's handling of the Cuban missile crisis to emphasize their own readiness for the commander-in-chief position. But history has become confused with myth.

Posted on June 23, 2008 at 12:45 PM ET | Comments (56)

McCain forgets his own votes

John McCain says he supported "every investigation" into the New Orleans tragedy. But he twice voted against a Democratic proposal for a 9/11 style commission.

Posted on June 5, 2008 at 11:13 AM ET | Comments (274)

McCain's Fantasy War on Earmarks

John McCain has promised to save $100 billion by abolishing earmarks. His economic calculations contain a large dose of fantasy.

Posted on May 23, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (123)

Barack in Wonderland

Barack Obama takes a lesson from Lewis Carroll to wriggle out of a meeting with Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. His words mean what he wants them to mean.

Posted on May 22, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (58)

McCain, Obama, and Kissing Dictators

John McCain has slammed Barack Obama for being willing to meet with foreign tyrants. But American presidents have a long tradition of shaking hands with mass murderers.

Posted on May 21, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (94)

John McCain's Birthplace

Some bloggers are challenging John McCain's claim that he was born inside the Panama Canal Zone. But a review of the archival record substantiates the senator's account.

Posted on May 20, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (13)

Citizen McCain

The Senate has declared that John McCain is a "natural-born citizen," eligible to be president of the United States. But the non-binding Senate resolution does not resolve an arcane constitutional debate about the meaning of "natural-born."

Posted on May 2, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (43)

Guilt by Association

Despite decrying the practice of "guilt by association," John McCain has been using the tactic a lot on the campaign trail recently. The Fact Checker looks at his rhetoric.

Posted on May 1, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

A holiday from gas prices?

John McCain and Hillary Clinton are calling for a "gas tax holiday." Barack Obama calls the idea a "short-term quick fix" that won't help consumers. Who is right?

Posted on April 29, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Dr. Obama and Dr. McCain

Barack Obama and John McCain both believe there is good evidence of a link between autism and childhood vaccines. The medical establishment says otherwise.

Posted on April 22, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (60)

Cindy's Recipegate

At least four McCain "family recipes" featured on the campaign website turn out to have been cribbed from the Internet. The McCain campaign is using the "clueless intern" defense.

Posted on April 15, 2008 at 02:58 PM ET | Comments (0)

Still no light at the end of the tunnel

A rare Geppetto checkmark to General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker for acknowledging that there is still no "light at the end of the tunnel" in Iraq. The three remaining presidential candidates have been less honest about the flaws in their own Iraqi exit strategies.

Posted on April 9, 2008 at 01:55 PM ET | Comments (30)

Name, Rank, and Service Number

A new television ad paints a picture of a defiant John McCain resisting his North Vietnamese captors. But it omits some important context. The Fact Checker investigates.

Posted on April 3, 2008 at 02:03 PM ET | Comments (95)

McCain's '100-year war'

Barack Obama continues to claim on the campaign trail that John McCain wants to fight a 100-year war in Iraq. Both he and Hillary Clinton have twisted McCain's words.

Posted on April 2, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (162)

McCain's Foreign Policy 'Gaffe'

Did John McCain mix up Sunnis and Shiites? Is there evidence to show that Iran (a Shiite theocracy) supports Sunni extremist groups in Iraq? The Fact Checker investigates.

Posted on March 20, 2008 at 11:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

Pinocchios for John McCain

John McCain has claimed that he is the "only" presidential candidate not to receive money from "special interests". Is he telling the truth?

Posted on February 29, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (73)

Bombs Away!

Macho alert! John McCain suggested changing the Beach Boys song "Barbara Ann" to "Bomb, bomb, Iran." But he is blasting Barack Obama for talking about bombing al Qaeda targets in Pakistan.

Posted on February 21, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

John McClinton?

A new Romney ad depicts John McCain and Hillary Clinton as almost identical. We look at his facts.

Posted on February 7, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (28)

Who is the Champion Flip-flopper?

Who is the champion flip-flopper? On the eve of Super Tuesday, we take a look at the records of Mitt Romney and John McCain.

Posted on February 5, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (51)

GOP Debate, Jan. 30, 2008.

Join the Fact Checker and diplomatic reporter Glenn Kessler for live truth squadding of tonight's GOP debate from the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, CA.

Posted on January 30, 2008 at 06:08 PM ET | Comments (90)

Mitt pumps gas

Mitt Romney claims that a family of four will pay $1000 more for gas under a McCain energy bill. His logic is flawed.

Posted on January 30, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Partial Quote Alert!

The art of the partial quote is alive and well in the 2008 presidential campaign. The Fact Checker digs up some recent examples of an old advertising trick.

Posted on January 29, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

McCain attacks Romney on Iraq

John McCain has accused Mitt Romney of wanting to set a date for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. He has distorted his rival's actual words.

Posted on January 28, 2008 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (516)

The GOP debate in Florida

Bloopers from the GOP debate in Florida. The candidates avoided challenging each other's records directly, but still made a number of questionable statements.

Posted on January 25, 2008 at 12:20 PM ET | Comments (104)

Mitt's Memory Lapse

Campaigning in Michigan, Mitt Romney is presenting himself as the automakers' friend. He has conveniently forgotten a 2002 campaign proposal that would have led to higher taxes on SUVs.

Posted on January 14, 2008 at 01:45 PM ET | Comments (0)

GOP Debate Myrtle beach

The Fact Checker and diplomatic reporter Glenn Kessler truth squad the Republican presidential debate from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Posted on January 10, 2008 at 07:40 PM ET | Comments (0)

Poetry versus Prose

The Fact Checker shares his impressions from four days on the road in New Hampshire. The Poetry party is beating the Prose party.

Posted on January 8, 2008 at 10:53 AM ET | Comments (26)

NH: One Day to Go

One day to the New Hampshire primary. The Fact Checker is on the road, following the candidates.

Posted on January 6, 2008 at 10:36 AM ET | Comments (0)

Saint Anselm College Presidential Debates

Join the Fact Checker for live truth squadding of the Republican and Democratic debates from Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire.

Posted on January 5, 2008 at 10:44 PM ET | Comments (0)

The 2007 Pinocchio Awards

The Fact Checker announces the 2007 Pinocchio Awards and a special Geppetto prize for truth-telling.

Posted on December 31, 2007 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (80)

Most Revealing Fibs: John McCain

A squabble over supply side economics appears to have broken out on board the "Straight Talk Express," pitting John McCain against his top domestic policy adviser. The Fact Checker adjudicates.

Posted on December 13, 2007 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

'Bomb, Bomb, Bomb; Bomb, Bomb, Iran'

Some presidential candidates have claimed flatly on the campaign trail that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. But their assertions are undercut by the latest National Intelligence Estimate released yesterday.

Posted on December 4, 2007 at 06:00 AM ET | Comments (43)

One Up, One Down for John McCain

The Fact Checker awards his first Geppetto checkmark, along with three Pinocchios, to the inventor of the Straight Talk Express.

Posted on October 31, 2007 at 08:45 AM ET | Comments (0)

Romney and Abortion

Mitt Romney has publicly acknowledged changing his views on abortion, from what was an "effectively pro-choice" position to a "firmly pro-life" stand.

Posted on September 21, 2007 at 09:15 AM ET | Comments (0)

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