Fact Check: Keeping The 5th Dem Debate Honest

Fact Check: Keeping The 5th Dem Debate Honest

The Democratic Party’s presidential wannabes met for their fifth debate recently, and as before there were some dramatic claims being made. Not all of those claims were what you might call “true,” but of course this is the Democrats we’re talking about, so the mainstream media outlets weren’t exactly quick to call them out on their misrepresentations. Luckily we’re here to do it for them.

Highlights

  • Joe Biden got off to a good start by claiming most Dems don’t support the Medicare for All plan being pushed by Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. The trouble is, recent polling shows that 77% of registered Democrats do support it.
  • Warren claimed the college system is racially biased; she said 94% of white graduates have paid off their student debt, but only 5% of black ones. In fact, she turned the figures for white students around; the real number is 49%. As for black students, the real figure is 26%, so it looks like she just made that one up.
  • Bernie Sanders repeated the claim he made in the third and fourth debates that 87 million Americans have no health insurance. The trouble is it’s no more true now than it was then — his figure includes almost 20 million people who weren’t insured last year but are now.
  • Kamala Harris accused President Trump of “shutting down” military collaboration with South Korea. Which would be a great point, except he hasn’t done that. The US and South Korean militaries continue to work and train together.
  • Harris also said the pay gap between men and women is for people doing equal work. It isn’t. The pay gap disappears when factors like experience, seniority and career breaks are taken into account.
  • Pete Buttigieg claimed that the president had to “confess in writing, to a court” that he’d illegally diverted charitable contributions for campaign purposes. In fact, Trump’s campaign did run a veterans’ fundraiser that was in breach of some funding laws — but the money raised was donated to veterans’ charities.
  • Finally, Elizabeth Warren claims that the top rate of the wealth tax she wants to impose would be “a couple of cents.” In fact, it’s 6% — of all wealth, not just annual income. Economists say this tax will cost people more than Warren claims, but raise less revenue than she expects.

So, while the fiction on display may have been entertaining, anyone assuming they were going to get facts from the candidates was sorely disappointed.

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