Who could have possibly predicted one party lies more than the other?

The media will no doubt shocked, shocked I tell ya, that a scientific analysis comparing apples to apples has definitively determined one party lies far more than the other. Take a wild guess who won the liar award:

Salon — Many politicians stretch the truth or obfuscate to some degree or another — but does one party do it more than the other? According to a new study from the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University the answer is an unequivocal yes. Parsing 100 statements evaluated by the fact-checking website PolitiFact between Obama’s second inauguration and this month, the researchers found that claims from Republican officials were labeled as “false” or “pants on fire” by a 3-to-1 margin, compared to claims from Democratic officials. Conversely, half as many Republican claims were labeled “entirely true.”

“While Republicans see a credibility gap in the Obama administration, PolitiFact rates Republicans as the less credible party,” said CMPA president Robert Lichter in a press release. An earlier study from the CMPA found the website rated the Romney campaign worse than the Obama campaign during the 2012 election. Not surprisingly, Michele Bachmann is one of the most poorly rated politicians on PolitiFact.


  1. says

    This is one of those easily observed facts that people don’t talk about. I’m guessing that the reason they don’t talk about it, is that GOP people go into a tantrum whenever it is mentioned.

  2. Reginald Selkirk says

    Michy Bachmann says she is not running for re-election. When she retires, it may be necessary to recalculate the statistics on frequency of lying.

  3. Holms says

    Their response to these findings was a forgone conclusion. The ones that believe their own misinformation don’t know that it is misinformation, and the ones that are actively lying… are going to lie about it.

  4. Nepenthe says

    Whoever designed this “study” should be beaten with a stick labeled “sampling error” until it sinks in.

  5. gshelley says

    Any right wing organization that doesn’t like these results is free to do their own check. I doubt they will though, as in order to get the result they want, they would have to be extremely selective with their data.

  6. unbound says

    Sadly, the group that did the “study” was a right-wing organization. The study’s conclusion was not that Republicans in fact lie 3 times more often but was designed to point out that PolitiFact reports out against Republicans far more often than Democrats and is therefore heavily biased (and probably gave Obama the election). The study was an indictment of PolitiFact (doesn’t matter if it is true or not…that is what the study said).

    Sadly, by Salon (and other sites) claiming that the study was about Republicans lying more than Democrats (and therefore missing the point of the study), they have largely confirmed that the media does indeed have a liberal bias. I know this isn’t true in general, but this example will be used to beat mainstream papers over their heads for many years to come.

    Salon royally screwed this up by not taking 2 frakkin minutes to verify what the study actually said.

  7. =8)-DX says

    Darn! They keep forgetting to say “this was not meant to be a factual statement” after each sentence! That way they’d get a 100% on politifact..

  8. comfychair says

    As usual, the ‘party of personal responsibility’ jumps up and blames all their problems on somebody else.

  9. Nepenthe says


    I looked at the press release and didn’t get that impression. Do you have access to a copy of an actual journal article somewhere? Is there an actual article somewhere?

  10. unbound says


    “The study finds that PolitiFact.com has rated Republican claims as false three times as often as Democratic claims during President Obama’s second term. Republicans continue to get worse marks in recent weeks, despite controversies over Obama administration statements on Benghazi, the IRS and the AP.”

    “This study’s findings are similar to those of a previous CMPA study, which found that PolitiFact gave more negative ratings to the Romney campaign than the Obama campaign during the 2012 presidential election campaign.”

    CMPA is a highly conservative foundation. Those sentences are not about Republicans lying more often. There is not a single statement that states that Republicans lie more often. The above statements are clearly that PolitiFact is, in their opinion, highly biased.

    I absolutely guarantee that this event will be used by conservatives for years to come about media bias. Not only the analysis, but by the representation of the study as well.

  11. georgelocke says

    There’s no way for this study to distinguish whether the lyingness is a result of sampling bias or not. Both salon and the CMPA are making unfounded conclusions. Our fearless leader is making the same mistake.

  12. says

    We all know the GOP lies their ass off George, we all deal with every single day. Evolution is a theory in crisis and intelligent design is a viable theory, global warming is a hoax, raising taxes always hurts the economy, banking deregulation will benefit everyone, etc. Rightwing media as an institution is just astonishingly bad, if one judges it by any standard of accuracy. That this daily experience would be borne out in a scientific study is hardly surprising.

  13. georgelocke says

    i agree that the GOP lies more. This study doesn’t show it. It shows that politifact rates statements made by republicans as false more than it does for Democrats. IF you want to show that this is because Republicans lie more, you need to start with an unbiased sample, and there’s no reason to the think politifact is unbiased (in its selection of which statements to rate. I have a high regard for the accuracy of their ratings.)

  14. georgelocke says

    “there’s no reason to the think politifact is unbiased” -> there’s no reason to think that there’s no bias in how politifact chooses which statements to evaluate.

  15. tynk says

    @15 Stephen

    That this daily experience would be borne out in a scientific study is hardly surprising.

    While I have no doubt that, intentional or otherwise, more lies come out of a political party based on religion and fear… To call the aggregation of data from a single source, that was not independently verified, a scientific study is beyond disingenuous.

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