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Covering 2016

NEWS

PolitiFact is getting ready to rate the promises of the new president

In a week's time, Americans will finally elect their 45th President. PolitiFact, however, isn't waiting for Election Day to start work on a new feature that will track the promises of Barack Obama's successor. The Obameter, PolitiFact's current "promise meter," will be retiring at the same time as its namesake. The new meter will build on the lessons … Read More
NEWS

Fox News' Chris Wallace earns praise for debate performance

Despite saying he wasn't going to do any "truth-squadding" at the final presidential debate, Chris Wallace was a vocal, dogged and above all fair moderator in Wednesday's contest between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. The "Fox News Sunday" host pressed Trump to take a position on Roe v. Wade. He fact-checked Clinton when she claimed she never called for … Read More
NEWS

Report: Voters want journalists to fact-check Trump and Clinton

Just when you thought Republicans and Democrats couldn't agree on anything. An overwhelming majority of supporters for both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump agree that journalists should call attention to inaccurate statements made by both candidates, according to a new report from Pew Research Center. According to a survey of 4,132 Americans conducted from Sept. 27 to Oct. 10, … Read More
NEWS

This newspaper is paying a price for endorsing Donald Trump

On Sunday, The St. Joseph (Missouri) News-Press dealt with a reaction several other newspapers have over the last few months. After it endorsed a candidate for president, some subscribers called to cancel. Comments beneath the endorsement and on Facebook were mostly filled with angry readers. But there was a difference. Instead of angering their audience for an endorsement of … Read More
NEWS

The New York Times legal department is still waiting for a reply from Donald Trump

At The New York Times, reporters aren't the only ones who can write fast. David McCraw, an attorney for the newspaper, drew praise on social media last week after his legal rebuttal to Donald Trump's retraction request went viral. Among other things, the letter suggested Trump would not win a libel case against the The New York Times for … Read More
NEWS

As the election draws to a close, BuzzFeed News plans a social media sprint to the finish

Looking back on BuzzFeed News' coverage of the 2016 election cycle, Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith doesn't have many regrets. But if he could do it over again, there's one thing he'd change. "There was a certain amount of investigative resources that went into Republican candidates who flamed out," Smith said, before adding a quick joke. "But we're making the reporters refund … Read More
NEWS

Why Trump wouldn't win a libel suit against The New York Times

It would give new meaning to "trumped up" lawsuit. Donald Trump is threatening a lawsuit against The New York Times after it detailed allegations of sexual harassment by two women. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson's White House chances might be greater than Trump's prospects for courtroom success against the newspaper. His lawyer wrote the newspaper and said the story is … Read More
NEWS

As profanity-laced video leaks, outlets grapple with Trump's language

Open microphones have often left politicians and other powerful people red-faced and apologetic. But The Washington Post's decision Friday to publish a video of Donald Trump explaining how he kissed and groped women pushed some newsrooms to dance around the graphic language while others took it public unedited. Because Trump's attitude toward women has been a central issue raised … Read More
NEWS

V.P. debate moderator lays off fact-checking as candidates interrupt each other

The first presidential debate was preceded by lots of chatter about the fact-checking duties of the moderator. While NBC's Lester Holt occasionally pushed back during the first debate regarding inaccurate claims — and was accused of being an "ignorant fact-checker" by former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani — vice presidential debate moderator Elaine Quijano completely avoided fact-checking … Read More
NEWS

Meet David Fahrenthold, The Washington Post's Trump charity sleuth

David Fahrenthold is one of the journalism stars of the 2016 campaign due to a string of revelations about Donald Trump's charitable giving (or lack of same). His latest disclosure prompted instant action from the state of New York, prompting state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to suspend the foundation's charitable activities in the state. During a break amid cable … Read More
NEWS

Breaking with tradition, USA Today 'disendorses' Donald Trump

For the first time in its 34-year history, USA Today took sides in the presidential race Thursday, publishing a scathing "disendorsement" of Republican nominee Donald Trump. "From the day he declared his candidacy 15 months ago through this week’s first presidential debate, Trump has demonstrated repeatedly that he lacks the temperament, knowledge, steadiness and honesty that America needs from … Read More
NEWS

CNN's Corey Lewandowski gets remainder of payments from Trump

Corey Lewandowski, the former Donald Trump campaign manager-turned political contributor to CNN, will now receive the remainder of his severance from Trump's campaign. Lewandowski, who was fired from Trump's campaign in June, has been receiving payments from his former employer, prompting objections from critics who cited the severance as a conflict of interest. Alisyn Camerota, an anchor for CNN, … Read More
NEWS

Between Trump and Hitler, New York Times book review doubles as political criticism

A tweet from Politico's Timothy Noah Wednesday called attention to a review by Michiko Kakutani of a new biography of Adolf Hitler. The headline for the review on the New York Times website reads: "In ‘Hitler,’ an ascent from ‘Dunderhead’ to Demagogue." I smiled at the clever parallel of those D-words. But I remained puzzled by Noah’s hint … Read More
NEWS

Rating Lester Holt on the Potted-Plant-O-Meter

In the sea of takes over who won the debate last night, it's almost hard to remember that one question dominated pre-debate commentary: will Lester Holt fact-check the candidates? "The moderator shouldn't sit there like a potted plant while a candidate says something that is obviously inaccurate," PolitiFact editor Angie Holan told Poynter a few days ago. At … Read More
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