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Spin Control

GOP presidential debate: What’s fact, what’s fiction?

Republican presidential candidates seemed very sure of their statements on immigration, Planned Parenthood, vaccines and each other during Wednesday night's debate.

Some hold up to the light of day, others don't, according to analysts who mined the debate for facts to check. (That's unlike the rest of us, who watched the debate like something between a football game and a prize fight to determine a winner.)

Here are some analyses of the statements. raised questions about claims linking vaccines to autism, Donald Trump's denial about supporting gambling in Florida, and Carly Fiorina's description of the Planned Parenthood tapes. called Ben Carson's statement about spreading out the number and dosages of vaccines a Pants on Fire claim, it's highest (or lowest) category for untruths. It found some other falsehoods, partial falsehoods, partial truths and truths.

CNN, the network that broadcast the debate, said Carson's statement that studies don't show a link between vaccines and autism was true. It said Chris Christie misstated the timing of his appointment as U.S. attorney in 2001, and was misleading on his opposition to Planned Parenthood funding in New Jersey. Trump was wrong about Scott Walker and the finances of Wisconsin, and Ted Cruz misstated some aspects of the Iran nuclear deal.

FOX News, which broadcast the first debate, dissected the comments on this one as well. They get into some of the same topics as the others, as well as medical marijuana in New Jersey and fences along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The Washington Post, includes "memorable quotes" from the debate as well as a range of fact checks.

USA Today provides its fact checks in its standard bullet format.


Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981 and retired in 2021. He is currently the political and state government correspondent covering Washington state.

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