Report: PolitiFact Eight Times As Likely to Defend President Biden Than Fact-Check Him

US President Joe Biden answers a reporter's question after speaking about the Covid-19 response and the vaccination program in the State Dining Room of the White House on May 4, 2021. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP) (Photo by NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images)
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images

PolitiFact has reportedly insisted it has nonpartisan fact-checkers, but a recent study claimed that was not factual.

A Media Research Center (MRC) study found that four years ago, PolitiFact gave 52 fact checks including a “Truth-O-Meter” ruling of former President Donald Trump his first 100 days, while in the same time period in 2021, it offered 13 fact checks of President Joe Biden, NewsBusters reported Tuesday.

“On its website, PolitiFact splits its Biden verdicts into ‘Facts Checks Of Biden’ and ‘Fact Checks About Biden.’ Our review of the first 100 days shows 13 fact checks ‘of Biden,’ and 106 fact checks ‘about Biden.’ That’s an eight-to-one disparity,” the outlet stated.

NewsBusters also suggested PolitiFact is more sensitive when it came to people allegedly telling falsehoods about Biden than it is about him lying:

Many of the fact checks about Biden are about “Facebook Posts,” “Viral Images,” or “Tweets.” Those rulings often translate into content warnings. But there were two “Pants on Fire” rulings for House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and one each for Fox News and for Tucker Carlson. Liz Cheney got the Flaming Pants for insisting that less than six percent of Biden’s infrastructure package is about infrastructure.

Perhaps the surprising measurement here is that the percentage of PolitiFact “Truth-O-Meter” rating of Biden and Trump were the same – 61.5 percent. Trump just had four times as many evaluations. Thirty-two of 52 Trump evaluations were defined as “Mostly False,” “False,” or “Pants on Fire.” Eight of 13 Biden evaluations landed on the False side. Biden had zero “Pants on Fire” ratings in the first 100 days. In 2017, Trump had two.

According to PolitiFact’s website, Trump has 161 “Pants on Fire” checks, while Biden currently has six.

Meanwhile, the Washington Post recently called it quits on its presidential fact-checking database, one hundred days into Biden’s administration.

Glenn Kessler, who is editor and chief writer of the Post‘s Fact Checker, said his team would continue to fact-check Biden but no longer maintain the database that began under former President Trump.


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