Saturday, December 12, 2015

If Facts Matter in Elections

I could look at this graph from the New York Times all day:

  • O'Malley never says anything completely true or pants-on-fire false, but more than half of his statements are half of each. What's up with that?
  • Sanders has no pants-on-fire ratings and the highest total true or mostly true. He's the only one who gets noticeably above the 50% line for at least mostly true. (Hillary is just at the line.)
  • Jeb! does best among the Republicans, with Rand Paul not far off. And look where that's gotten them.
  • Ben Carson and Donald Trump have never said anything that's completely true, though Trump is slightly better on the mostly true front. But Trump also has the most flaming pants of any candiate.
  • Lindsey Graham may have the most even distribution among the varying amounts of truth (omitting pants on fire, which he has managed to avoid). In this case, balance is not a good thing, though.
I suppose a conservative might look at this and say the ratings are biased. But I bet if you dig into the stories behind each data point, you'll find that it's very middle-of-the-road. I know when I've read the PolitiFact ratings on the (liberal or progressive) candidates I like when they're rated badly, I often disagree with the writer's premise. So I don't believe they're in the bag for the Democrats. Reality, as some say, just has a liberal bias.

1 comment:

Gina said...

Oh, this is interesting and not at all surprising! Thanks for posting.