You know them, or maybe you're one of them: the type of person for whom the most important thing in the world is to be interesting.
Meg Wolitzer's new novel, The Interestings, is devoted to investigating the species, following a clique of New Yorkers who meet as teens at Spirit-in-the-Woods, a summer camp for the arts, in 1974. As they hang out in camp teepees, drinking vodka and Tang and smoking joints, they dream of bright futures as actors, musicians and artists....
It's a statistic that President Barack Obama and gun control advocates like to repeat again and again: Forty percent of gun purchases are made without background checks.
It's true that purchases at gun shows and via the Internet typically go without background checks. But is it 40 percent? It's difficult for us fact-checkers to say, because it's based on a telephone survey from 1994 — almost 20 years ago....
Louisiana exerts the biggest tug on the hearts of its children, if you believe the U.S. Census. Close to 80 percent of people born there stay there, more than in any other state, according to 2010 numbers.
I can personally vouch for that; Louisiana is the state where I was born. Whenever I get together with fellow Louisiana expats, we inevitably turn to our explanations — our excuses, really — for why we haven't gone home. Then we lament: We miss the food. We miss the music. We miss family....
TAMPA — "You campaign in poetry. You govern in prose."
Mario Cuomo said it.
Bob Buckhorn is living it.
At the midpoint of his four-year term, Tampa's mayor has kept 17 of his 34 campaign promises, according to the Buck-O-Meter, a project of PolitiFact Florida, the political fact-checking arm of the Tampa Bay Times.
This past year, those promises included finding money to finish the Riverwalk, writing a master plan for downtown development and balancing public order with protester rights at the Republican National Convention....
02/22/13 State Roundup
It's Washington's latest case of economic hostage-taking: If Congress and President Barack Obama don't reach a deal by Friday, the budget gets whacked!
Voters have heard these fiscal threats before. This time, the cuts are part of existing law. Inaction means nearly across-the-board spending cuts, with half taken from defense and the military.
Here's PolitiFact's guide to that funny word, sequestration....
02/19/13 State Roundup
Says of a failed cloture vote on nominating Chuck Hagel for defense secretary: "This is not a filibuster."
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, in a speech on the Senate floor
Some Republicans in the U.S. Senate aren't very happy that their old colleague, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, has now been nominated to be President Barack Obama's defense secretary....
Chuck Hagel, a former Republican senator from Nebraska and a Vietnam veteran, goes before the Senate for confirmation hearings today as President Barack Obama's nominee for defense secretary.
But even before Obama made his choice official, independent spending groups funded by anonymous donors were blasting Hagel. A barrage of TV ads has portrayed him as soft and squishy on Israel, Iran and America's nuclear weapons arsenal....
Despite a polarized nation and a largely dysfunctional Congress, President Barack Obama has fulfilled or made substantial progress on 73 percent of the 508 promises he made when he ran for president in 2008.
Those results come from PolitiFact's Obameter, an unprecedented four-year effort to rate the president's campaign promises. The ongoing project by the Tampa Bay Times' fact-checking website reveals that Obama has achieved 47 percent of his promises, earning a rating of Promise Kept. Another 26 percent were partially fulfilled, earning a rating of Compromise. ...
During his re-election campaign, President Barack Obama repeated many promises he first made in 2008. But he also made a few new ones.
PolitiFact found 24 promises to add to our Obameter database, an ongoing project that tracks and rates his promises.
Some are reactions to big events. He vowed to help the victims of Superstorm Sandy, for example, and he said he wanted to "fix" the long lines some voters faced on Election Day. ...
01/05/13 State Roundup
Rick Scott had never held public office when he ran for governor in 2010, but his campaign promises reflected his deeply held belief that shrinking government would unleash job growth.
As governor, Scott constantly mentions his No. 1 priority of job growth, which he says will be achieved with low taxes and business-friendly regulation. But his cheerleading hasn't been enough to turn his promise into reality....
01/01/13 State Roundup
With 2012 now behind us, PolitiFact Florida editors decided to look back at your favorite fact-checks of a busy political year. In no particular order, here are a selection of the most-read PolitiFact Florida fact-checks of 2012.
Mitt Romney came to Florida in January fending off Republican challengers like Newt Gingrich, who accused Romney of being anti-immigrant. Romney hit back with a Spanish-language radio ad, telling voters that Gingrich once said, "Spanish is the language of the ghetto."...
PolitiFact will soon announce its Lie of the Year -- the most significant falsehood of 2012, as chosen by our editors and reporters. They're also inviting PolitiFact readers to vote for the coveted Readers' Choice award. Here are the 10 finalists and a link to the survey so you can vote for your favorite....
The deluge of advertising and attacks in Sunshine State’s U.S. Senate race will be over soon. Tuesday we learn which candidate will serve alongside Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio -- Republican U.S. Rep. Connie Mack of Fort Myers, or Democratic incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson of Orlando.
PolitiFact Florida has fact-checked it all in this race, with allegations of tax-dodging cows, youthful bar brawls, stints at Hooters and a heaping of health care hyperbole. We've rounded up the most significant fact-checks of the campaign in this story, Greatest hits of Florida's U.S. Senate race....
When Mitt Romney and Barack Obama have discussed foreign policy, there's been lots of accusations and finger-pointing.
Romney accuses Obama of apologizing for America, for being weak against Iran, Russia and China, and not supportive of Israel.
Obama, meanwhile, accuses Romney of incompetence and ignorance and of stoking aggression toward Iran. Obama charges that Romney's approach to foreign policy would "take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost America so dearly."...
President Barack Obama made this charge at the first presidential debate: "Gov. Romney's central economic plan calls for a $5 trillion tax cut, on top of the extension of the Bush tax cuts."
Not so, Mitt Romney said, repeatedly: "First of all, I don't have a $5 trillion tax cut. … I'm not looking to cut massive taxes and to reduce the revenues going to the government. … I'm not looking for a $5 trillion tax cut."...