PolitiFact insists that they are non-partisan fact checkers. “The PolitiFact agenda is – don’t take sides with any politician or party,” said editor Angie Drobnic Holan. “We are independent and we are working hard to find the truth. So we follow the facts wherever they take us, no matter who made the complaint. “
This assertion is not factual. New Media Research Center Study Finds That Four Years Ago PolitiFact Offered 52 Fact Checks With A Donald Trump Truth-O-Meter In Its First 100 Days (Jan.20 – April 30) 2017), while in the same period this year, PolitiFact offered just 13 fact-checks for President Biden.
Since the media insists Trump is in his own category on truth and lies, let’s suggest a different metric. On its website, PolitiFact divides its Biden verdicts into “Facts Checks Of Biden” and “Fact Checks About Biden”. Our review of the first 100 days shows 13 “Biden” fact checks and 106 “about Biden” fact checks. It’s an eight-to-one disparity.
In other words, they’re much more sensitive to someone ‘lying’ about Biden than to Biden lying.
Most fact checks on Biden relate to “Facebook posts”, “virus images” or “tweets.” These decisions often result in content warnings. But there were two “Pants on Fire” decisions for Minority House Leader Kevin McCarthy and one for Fox News and Tucker Carlson. Liz Cheney won the Flaming Pants for insisting that less than six percent of Biden’s infrastructure package is for infrastructure.
Perhaps the surprising metric here is that Biden and Trump’s PolitiFact “Truth-O-Meter” rating percentage was the same – 61.5%. Trump just got four times as many ratings. Thirty-two of Trump’s 52 ratings were defined as “mostly fake”, “fake” or “pants on fire.” Eight of the 13 Biden evaluations landed on the False side. Biden didn’t have any “Pants on Fire” ratings for the first 100 days. In 2017, Trump had two.
But the fact checks on Biden were overwhelmingly negative – 91 of 106 checks were “mostly false” or worse, nearly 86%. Biden’s reviews received 24 “Pants on Fire” ratings, 45 “False” ratings and 22 “Mostly False” ratings. Ten were “half true”, three were “almost true” and two were “true”.
Media Research Center analysts found that only 37 fact checks on Biden were listed under PolitiFact’s “Fact Checks About Biden” column. But PolitiFact lists each “Truth-O-Meter” rating on pages broken down by category, and reviewing those pages brought the total to 106.
Overall, Biden’s PolitiFact page shows that it has been placed on the “Truth-O-Meter” 169 times in website history as of 2007, and turned out to be on the True / Mostly True 67 times (almost 40%) and Mostly False or worse 78 times (46 percent). In contrast, Donald Trump has 931 of these fact checks, and 692 of them are mostly false or worse (74.3%). Trump has 161 “Pants on Fire” ratings. Biden has six.