Truth Squad: Fact checking the GOP debate
November 13th, 2011
05:50 AM ET

Truth Squad: Fact checking the GOP debate

CNN's Truth Squad fact-checked some of the claims made at Saturday night's Republican presidential debate in Spartanburg, South Carolina. We'll take a look at some of the questions posed to the candidates, then share with you how they answered the question.

Romney: Repealing health plan will save billions

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney targeted the Affordable Care Act during Saturday's Republican candidates' debate in Spartanburg, South Carolina, saying a repeal would save billions of dollars.

The statement: "A lot of programs we like but we simply can't afford. The first one we'll eliminate, however, we're happy to get rid of. That's Obamacare. And that'll save us $95 billion by my fourth year," Romney said.

The verdict: True, but incomplete

Read why

Bachmann: CIA interrogation is lacking

The statement: During Saturday night's Republican candidates' debate on national security issues, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota said the United States has nowhere to take terrorists for interrogation and said the CIA does not interrogate anymore.

The verdict: Misleading

Read why

Santorum challenges Obama, Bush on Iran funding

The Statement: "I've been working on Iran since back in 2004 and proposed exactly the things that Herman and Mitt Romney suggested, which was to give money to the rebel forces there to help the pro-democracy movement and put tough sanctions in place. I was opposed by President Bush, and yet we were able to overcome that and pass the Iran Freedom and Support Act. I was able to get that done, and then President Bush didn't provide money for the pro-democracy movement and President Obama cut that money."

The verdict: Misleading

Read why

Bachmann challenges administration on deficit

The statement: "In October, we just added another $203 billion in debt. When you consider the last time that Republicans controlled the budget, it was 2007 and debt was $160 billion per year. For every man, woman and child in the United States, it means each of us took $650 in debt for the month of October," Bachmann said.

The verdict: True, but incomplete

Read why

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Filed under: Politics • Republican Party • U.S.
soundoff (454 Responses)
  1. Goronpaul

    Lets fact check Ron Paul Ohh wait he was given only 89 seconds of talk time in the whole debate. Wake up America the Media is picking your canidate, Will you allow a corporation to tell you who will be your leader?

    November 13, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate (Seattle, WA)


      The reason the media doesn't focus on Ron Paul is that anyone with a 90 IQ or above realizes that Ron Paul is not a serious candidate. Republicans have had the chance to elect him before, and he's never come close. As to corporations telling you who your leaders will be, perhaps no candidate is more willing to sign your government over to corporate interests than Ron Paul. To Paul, no regulation is justified, every government function should be privatized, corporate restrictions and taxes should be cut to the bone.

      You're really clueless if you don't see that this guy is dumber than a box of rocks, without a shred of willingness to stand up to corporate control.

      November 13, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hector


      You idiot! Every other candidate BUT Ron Paul is bought and paid for by the big Wall Street banks! Get your fluoridated head out of your behind! You are living proof of the gullibility of the American citizen!

      November 13, 2011 at 10:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ghost of O'Reilly

      Hate, And Bachmann and Perry ARE serious candidates?

      November 14, 2011 at 2:20 am | Report abuse |
  2. Peikovianii

    The GOP stresses religion because as conservatives they automaticaly endorse whatever tradition they find, and because as pragmatists they (1) don't see any point in intellectualizing the subject and (2) know there are many votes to be gained in the meantime. By contrast the Dems as liberals are automatically against religion, unless it would upset black churchgoers, whose votes the Dems desperately need. In that case the Dems dance like it's all a Blues Brothers movie.

    November 13, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      Isn't it? Really?

      November 13, 2011 at 6:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Peikovianii

      It's like the first movie. The good one.

      November 13, 2011 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      Were there others? 😉

      November 13, 2011 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Allen

      It's fascinating how someone can simply say "conservatives – religion, liberals against." Really? Do you mean to say that everyone who labels him/herself as conservative is automatically devoutly religious, and every one else is just a heathen. I dunno, it sounds a lot like radical Muslims calling every non-Muslim an infidel. This kind of simplistic, black-white thinking is what gets us candidates who offer simple minded solutions to complex problems. Yes we do need to "intellectualize" issues. The world is a complex place and the last thing we need in office is someone who can't grasp that.

      November 13, 2011 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate (Seattle, WA)

      You're a flaming idiot. Are you aware that only 15% of this country are non-believers (in God)? Since the country is split roughly down the middle in terms of Democrats and Republicans, that means that even if every single Republican believes in God, which certainly isn't true, that a majority of Democrats also do. Even if you break the country down into left, right, and center, you find that a majority of Democrats are believers. So, your comment is basically bat guano.

      November 13, 2011 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dr. Bombay

      "...Dems as liberals are automatically against religion, unless it would upset black churchgoers..." This post makes absolutely no sense.

      November 13, 2011 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Palin 2112

      You are lucky we live in a free country. In some countries Internet access is denied to idiots.

      November 13, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • National Jester

      When will CNN make a serious attempt to Fact Check the Obama White House?

      November 13, 2011 at 10:18 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jeff Frank ( R - OHIO ) "Яight Wing Иutcase"

    Truth squad...actually it's quite appropriate. It's not the "left" vs. the "right". No. This is a battle about RIGHT vs. WRONG.

    November 13, 2011 at 6:58 pm | Report abuse |
  4. zip

    The target audience for these guys are America's trailer parks. Those folks aren't too smart, so it's a race to see who can say the most outrageous things and get things stirred up. Then the trailer parker flips to Fox Fake News for affirmation. Which is verbatim what was said in the debate. God, what a great country!!

    November 13, 2011 at 7:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. s kel


    November 13, 2011 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  6. sickofalldems

    CNN "truth squad" as laughable as a responsible democrat. What about fact checking the 57 states that His Highness campainged in?

    November 13, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bert in UT

      So after almost 3 years in office, the only factual mistake you can find for Obama is one slip of the tongue?

      November 13, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate (Seattle, WA)

      What amounts to a verbal "typo" is not the same thing as an intentional lie. If you asked Obama again, he'd say that he meant to say that he'd been to 47 of the 50 states. However, when the GOP tells you Obama has raised your taxes, that health care reform had death panels, that Democrats are soft on terrorism, or that the stimulus didn't create one job, those are all lies.

      November 13, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Palin 2112

      Yes Just like you guys wanted to see his long form birth certificate.

      November 13, 2011 at 10:16 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Tough USA

    Fact: Ron Paul won as usual and was blacked out.

    November 13, 2011 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • henry

      i am beginning to wonder can the us live without war?

      November 13, 2011 at 8:52 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Fiveacre65

    That's right. Conservatives are deeply religious folks. Don't you remember that part in the Bible about if your brother is sick and needs health care, screw 'em. If Jesus was a republican, Lazerus would still be laying there...

    November 13, 2011 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • bamaFan123

      Nice.... : )

      November 13, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Palin 2112


      November 13, 2011 at 10:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. AZLib

    GOP such thing.. When was the last time the 1% cared at all about truth.. they will say whatever they can to get a vote... In Truth the GOP politicians will turn their back on you minute one after the vote and do exactly what their 1% masters tell them to do, say vote. They will stoop to any new lows... they will use racism, religion, guns, hatred, anything to put a fire in your belly to vote their way... they are masters at the negitive campaign and back by $$$$$$ streaming in from their masters who in turn are flooding your airwaves and phoney news channels to keep anything but the truth in front of you. end result the 1% win, the elected GOP politicans end up rich and the voter is sold down the river. Don't believe me just look at the mormon.. he has flip floped his message so many times it requires a deadicated computer to just track the changes. Or Cain / Perry as far as using hatred to drum up their voters... Always have to attach a label and de-humanize your oppononet (first law of propagnda).

    November 13, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • mozart

      Honestly? Do you even bother to think through things before you start ranting? You aren't one of those clowns who really believes that Bill Gates owes you part of his wealth because he is rich (which automatically makes him evil) and you are what? Seriously, what is it about you that people who have worked hard and made a success of themselves, owes you anything. How about if you stop your whining and go out and make a success of yourself? Yes, life is tough and it sure isn't always fair but it is what it is so get off your backside and contribute to the world in general.

      November 13, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
  10. IMAH

    SNL says it all.

    November 13, 2011 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mfb

    I find it interesting that C N N or any other major media outlet would claim to be truth checking politicians' statements and offering "verdicts" such as as "true, but incomplete" and "misleading." These same "verdicts" could be rendered on nearly every story printed by most of the major "news" outlets.

    November 13, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate (Seattle, WA)

      We're not voting to elect CNN President. We are trying to evaluate the ninnies on stage, so fact-checking their statements is kind of important.

      November 13, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • mfb

      true. and we also need to be able to evaluate the "ninnies" in the White House and Congress as well. however, I don't place any more trust in C N N 's self procalimed "truth squad" status than I do that of any of our politicians in or running for office.

      November 13, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Report abuse |
  12. s kel

    WAR is what most republicans sould strive for and in up being. Weak.....Ass..... Republicans.

    November 13, 2011 at 10:03 pm | Report abuse |
  13. dinak

    Wow, a truth squad for the GOP candidates. Gee, could CNN run a weekly truth squad special on Obama, starting with his promises and assertions during his initial campaign, and throughout his 3 yrs as President? Amazing how much analysis CNN is willing to do on the GOP. Since Obama is the one who is currently President, wouldn't it be nice to have an ongoing analysis os his and other Dem promises and statements, too?

    November 13, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Palin 2112

      One question..just one. Do you get paid more for posting under multiple aliases?

      November 13, 2011 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joshua Ludd

      Yes, because its unfair that they do exactly what they did during the Democratic primaries during the GOP primary. Once again, Reality has a liberal bias.

      November 14, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  14. bud

    Let me give CNN a fact. They openly admit giving more time to candidates who rate higher in the polls. This is done for ratings obviously. A true political debate gives all candidates equal time. So our very Republic is being shaped by TV ratings. Sad, very sad

    November 13, 2011 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. David Trachtenberg

    OK, great – can I assume that the CNN "truth squad" is checking President Obama and the Democrats in Congress? It seems that there is as much unrealtiy on one side as the other....

    November 13, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Palin 2112

      Dinak you again? Ca ching!

      November 13, 2011 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
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