Do politicians lie? Yes, from time to time they do. That’s what we all know. Hillary Clinton made it easy to disprove her creative narrative of getting into sniper fire in Bosnia in March 1996. At that time the war was over journalists quickly asserted.But often it’s difficult to prove a lie as such. Factcheck.org tries to do so and provides transparency for the election campaigns the candidates are currently running in the USA. They do it by monitoring the factual accuracy of what is said by main political players in the U.S. to reduce the level of deception and confusion in US politics. Factcheck.org is part of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania and primarily funded by the Annenberg Foundation.
To be fair and taking into account that one can not be sure about the origin of and the motivation for the way politicians address the public factcheck.org does not call it lying but „misleading“. That’s a nice way to put it keeping in mind that the techniques of publicly telling something else but the truth become ever more sophisticated.
One example: In a TV ad produced by the Obama campaign from January 2008 about his health care plan it is said: „The Obama plan saves $2.500 for a typical family“. For this quote the Washington Post is referred to as source. Interestingly enough this actually happened: The Washington Post quoted the Obama campaign in an article and the Obama campaign quoted this quote again as one of the Washington Post. A perfect example of self-serving political communication.