small business association I’m a fan of reporters doing regular fact checking analyses of claims made by their sources, particularly elected officials. Pat Kessler at WCCO-TV’s Reality Check and Tom Scheck at Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) are among those who do a decent job with that locally, but there should be more of it.
But who is checking the checkers? The University of Minnesota’s Smart Politics blog did an interesting analysis of the fact checking done by the Pulitzer Prize winning Politifact, which is affiliated with the St. Petersburg Times. doing business
Dr. Eric Ostermeier of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance (CSPG) at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs notes that Politifact analyses have found that Republicans lie more often than Democrats or Independents. A lot more.
“We choose to check things we are curious about. If we look at something and we think that an elected official or talk show host is wrong, then we will fact-check it.”
For whatever reason, could it be that Politifact just disproportionately tends to select the cases that make Republicans look worst, and Democrats look best? Could it be that Politifacts’ analysts are tougher on Republicans than Democrats? Or does the current crop of Republican officeholders just lie more?