CNN's Truth Squad takes on GOP debate
November 13th, 2011
07:52 AM ET
10 years ago

CNN's Truth Squad takes on GOP debate

(CNN) – CNN's Truth Squad fact-checked some of the assertions made by Republicans candidates during Saturday night's GOP debate in Spartanburg, South Carolina that focused on foreign policy and national security.

Here are the results:

Romney: Repealing health plan will save billions

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney targeted the Affordable Care Act during Saturday's Republican candidates' debate, saying a repeal would save billions of dollars.

The statement: "A lot of programs we like but we simply can't afford. The first one we'll eliminate, however, we're happy to get rid of. That's Obamacare. And that'll save us $95 billion by my fourth year," Romney said.

The facts: Repeal of the Affordable Care Act, referred to by some critics as Obamacare, would indeed cut federal spending by about $95 billion in 2016, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the non-partisan research arm of Congress.

Bachmann: CIA interrogation is lacking

Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota said the United States has nowhere to take terrorists for interrogation and said the CIA does not interrogate anymore.

The statement: "When we interdict a terrorist on the battlefield, we have no jail for them. We have nowhere to take them. We have no CIA interrogation anymore," Bachmann said.

The facts: The controversial CIA "black site" prison program, where the suspect of the USS Cole bombing and others were interrogated immediately after arrest, has been dismantled. In an April 2009 letter from CIA director Leon Panetta to employees, Panetta wrote, "CIA no longer operates detention facilities or black sites and has proposed a plan to decommission the remaining sites."

Santorum challenges Obama, Bush on Iran funding

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum made numerous statements about sanctions on Iran and the Iran Freedom and Support Act during Saturday night's debate.

The Statement: "I've been working on Iran since back in 2004 and proposed exactly the things that Herman and Mitt Romney suggested, which was to give money to the rebel forces there to help the pro-democracy movement and put tough sanctions in place. I was opposed by President Bush, and yet we were able to overcome that and pass the Iran Freedom and Support Act. I was able to get that done, and then President Bush didn't provide money for the pro-democracy movement and President Obama cut that money."

The Facts: Santorum did sponsor a bill to provide assistance to pro-democracy groups opposed to the government of Iran. The bill was passed in 2006 and became public law.

Bachmann challenges administration on deficit

During the debate, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota cited numbers relating to debt and deficit and implied that the Obama administration is to blame for their increases.

The statement: "In October, we just added another $203 billion in debt. When you consider the last time that Republicans controlled the budget, it was 2007 and debt was $160 billion per year. For every man, woman and child in the United States, it means each of us took $650 in debt for the month of October," Bachmann said.

The facts: According to the U.S. Treasury's website, the total public outstanding debt on September 30, 2011 was $14,790,340,328,557.15; by October 31, it was $14,993,709,044,140.78. Subtract September's total from October's and you get $203,368,715,583.63. To get a per-capita figure, we divide that number by the total U.S. population in 2010, as determined by the U.S. Census, to get $658.69.

Filed under: 2012 • South Carolina
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Guitar

    One question never brought up to the 'campaigners' is, if their jobs back at home, (Governors, Senators, Reps, etc) are so important, pressing, and time consuming when they are at those positions, then how are they able to spend so much time away, (over a year) from those jobs while on the campaign trail? Yes, yes, we'll hear, "I am kept constantly abreast of all matters in my state"....blah, blah, blah. It's my contention, that is they're able to run those jobs 'part time' while out away and far from their respective states campaigning, then they should be paid accordingly: with PART-TIME Compensation from their respective states – if at all. Isn’t it vital they are at the office IN their Capitols DAILY for votes, legislation, important matters of state? Guess not!!

    November 13, 2011 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  2. Keith in Austin

    Hey CNN! Why don't you sic your Liberal Truth Squad around the White House? We'd like to see some real investigative journalism on the myriad of deceitful activity ongoing there like; Holder's lies to Congress re: Fast and Furious, How our Stimulus money was wasted by going to big unions and political pork projects, Obamas Green Energy Program and the billions lost to companies like Solyndra, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae etc. etc. Your liberal bias is only exceeded by the masses of viewers getting their news elsewhere!

    November 13, 2011 08:37 am at 8:37 am |
  3. dnick47

    So much for pro-life! The GOP (Greedy Old Pigs) would strip the poor of health care but increase spending on war and its related items: in other words, increase death spending and slash life spending – evidently the poor fetus being aborted are just window dressing to appeal to the niave religious people.

    November 13, 2011 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  4. cloudjumper

    It's interesting that no Libtards have commented on the truths outlined in the article. As is always the case, if you want to frustrate a Democrat/Liberal, speak the truth.

    November 13, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |