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November 04, 2011 3:05 pm ET

GOP Responses To Jobs Report Ignore Main Obstacle To Growth

With the news this morning that the private economy added 104,000 jobs but the public sector shed 24,000, prominent Republicans had a chance to trot out the same tired, debunked explanation for slow economic growth they've been using throughout the Obama presidency. According to the GOP, job creators are not hiring because of regulations and high spending from Washington, D.C. But according to the job creators themselves, regulations, taxes and spending are not the issue — they simply don't have enough customers to justify expanding their workforces. The problem continues to be weak demand.

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October 31, 2011 10:24 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - October 30, 2011

This week's Sunday talk shows included several GOP presidential contenders who have figured out that ignoring facts is a winning formula among their party's voters. While all the candidates who appeared on the shows parroted the same points they've been making for the past several months, there were also several new allegations. On Face the Nation, GOP frontrunner Herman Cain, after having adjusted his 9-9-9 tax plan to avoid tax hikes on those living in poverty, claimed that the exemption was there all along and that his critics simply misreported his plan. That's unlikely given that Cain has been on record defending taxing the income of those living in poverty. On This Week, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) was called out for misrepresenting immigration statistics. Rather than acknowledge her mistake and move on, Bachmann claimed that she did not say what the video clearly showed her saying. And on Fox News Sunday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) repeated a slew of easily debunked economic talking points, including that President Obama had overseen the creation of "practically no jobs."

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October 11, 2011 4:20 pm ET

The Facts About Texas' In-State Tuition Law

In 2001, Texas Gov. Rick Perry signed a law granting in-state tuition benefits to undocumented immigrants. Now that Perry is running for president, his critics, including GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney, are using Perry's support for the law to accuse him of being insufficiently tough on immigration. However, Texas' in-state tuition law is both good for the economy and legally sound. Given those facts, critics like Romney should explain why Perry's judgment about the best policy for Texas was wrong instead of simply pandering to anti-immigrant sentiment among GOP primary voters.  

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September 16, 2011 4:56 pm ET

Gov. Perry Shows His Ignorance On The Israeli/Palestinian Conflict

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has written an op-ed, published in both the Jerusalem Post and Wall Street Journal, assailing the impending Palestinian statehood initiative before the United Nations and, unsurprisingly, putting much of the blame on the Obama administration. Perry, of course, has little knowledge of foreign policy, which is evident by the fact that he signed his name to such easily refutable claims. Highlighting his inability to accurately connect interrelated issues or make logical conclusions, Perry writes that through their statehood efforts at the U.N., "the Palestinians are signaling that they have no interest in a two-state solution." Of course, the whole point of the U.N. move, as even opponents understand, is to create a Palestinian state alongside Israel. By definition, those would be two different states. This sort of ignorance permeates the piece.

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August 15, 2011 4:27 pm ET

Rick Perry's Ethics: Pay-To-Play Government And "Junk" Justice

Now that Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) is officially running for president, his record as a chief executive deserves national scrutiny. Non-partisan watchdog Citizens for Ethics and Responsibility in Washington named Perry one of the most unethical governors in the country, in part because of Perry's brand of graft is particularly efficient: One of every five dollars his campaign raised through 2010 came from political appointees. The rest of the picture is even uglier. The case of Cameron Todd Willingham — where Perry allowed a man to be executed despite being given scientific evidence may have exonerated him, and then sought to derail an investigation into the episode years later — may prove more damaging to Perry's candidacy.

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August 15, 2011 4:27 pm ET

Rick Perry's Convenient Constitution: Views Shift With The Political Tides

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) owes his fame in large part to his prominent statements about the federal government intruding on states' rights, but he supports imposing his repressive right-wing ideas on abortion and sexuality upon the whole nation through constitutional amendments. According to Perry, safety net spending and the direct election of U.S. senators are also on the wrong side of the Constitution.

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August 15, 2011 4:26 pm ET

Rick Perry's Texas: Not All It's Cracked Up To Be

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) is quick to take credit for the Texas economy, boasting that his time in office has seen Texas lead the nation in growth. But the reality is that Texas' job growth has not kept up with its population growth, and as a result its unemployment rate throughout the recession has been comparable to that of other states. Moreover, Texan jobs come more from the natural blessings of location and resources that Texas enjoys than from Perry's policies.

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November 22, 2010 9:37 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - November 21, 2010

On Meet the Press, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) accused the Obama administration of coddling terrorists when in fact we have killed nearly 30 Taliban and al Qaeda leaders since the president took office, and military commissions have produced weaker results than did the much-discussed civilian trial of Ahmed Ghailani last week. Jindal rounded out his performance by dipping into dishonest right-wing rhetoric about Obama seeking to "apologize for America." Meanwhile, on Fox News Sunday, another southern Republican governor told some very different tall tales. Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) repeated his claim that Social Security amounts to "a Ponzi scheme," and when host Chris Wallace pointed out the basic dishonesty of Perry's rhetoric — far from a massive fraud, Social Security is a long-successful and honest system that is in some long-term trouble because of changing demographics — Perry smiled and claimed Wallace had just proven the program is a criminal enterprise.

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November 08, 2010 11:19 am ET

Fact Checking The Sunday Shows - November 7, 2010

The Sunday shows were crowded with naked falsehoods yesterday. Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) claimed on Fox News that President Obama "has killed jobs" despite the fact that a resurgent private sector has added 1.1 million jobs so far this year. On CBS, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) claimed that 750,000 small businesses pay income taxes in the top two brackets, but that number only works if you include massive corporations like Bechtel and PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which play accounting games to avoid corporate tax rates, in your definition of "small businesses." Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) absurdly claimed on NBC that Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) entitlement-slashing debt reduction plan requires more sacrifice from bureaucrats than from average Americans. Worst of all, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) claimed on ABC that tax cuts for the wealthy are good for the economy and don't increase the deficit. In the real world, of course, Pence is wrong on both counts.

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April 20, 2009 12:26 pm ET

Gov. Rick Perry and the Secessionists

Washington, DC - Today, Media Matters Action Network released a memo outlining Texas Governor Rick Perry's ties to a Texas secessionist group whose former leaders are responsible for numerous acts of domestic terrorism. "From bomb threats, to kidnapping, to planning attacks using biological weapons, the Texas Nationalist Movement has a long violent history that cannot be ignored," Media Matters Action Network Managing Director Ari Rabin-Havt said. "Governor Perry should be ashamed of his association with these domestic terrorists."

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