Fox News host Neil Cavuto rehashed old myths on his show today to argue against a proposed Democratic bill that would raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10 an hour and require annual increases for inflation. To make his point, Cavuto claimed the higher wage would negatively impact current unemployment levels, saying to Democratic strategist Malia Lazu: "Do you look around at what's going on? Do you look at 8.2% unemployment? ... You think raising the minimum wage is going to bring those rates down? Do you honestly, seriously think that?"
In reality, contrary to Cavuto's claims, there is no evidence that increasing the minimum wage results in higher unemployment.
The Center for Economic and Policy Research found that raising the minimum wage has no "discernible impact" on employment, and in fact, concluded that wage increases are more likely to result in more jobs rather than less:
The results for fast food, food services, retail, and low-wage establishments in San Francisco and Santa Fe support the view that a citywide minimum wages can raise the earnings of low-wage workers, without a discernible impact on their employment. Moreover, the lack of an employment response held for three full years after the implementation of the measures, allaying concerns that the shorter time periods examined in some of the earlier research on the minimum wage was not long enough to capture the true disemployment effects.
Our estimated employment responses generally cluster near zero, and are more likely to be positive than negative. Few of our point estimates are precise enough to rule out either positive or negative employment effects, but statistically significant positive employment responses outnumber statistically significant negative elasticities.
In recent interviews, President Clinton and former White House economic adviser Larry Summers agreed with President Obama that Congress should not extend the Bush tax cuts for wealthy households. But Fox News distorted their comments to falsely claim that Clinton and Summers are in favor of extending them for all households, and thus are "at odds" with Obama.
On the eve of Wisconsin's recall elections, Fox News host Neil Cavuto turned his Your World program over to Republican lawmakers to make their case for why Gov. Scott Walker should not be recalled. Among his guests were Walker himself, Wisconsin state Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, U.S. Sens. Ron Johnson from Wisconsin and Jim DeMint from South Carolina, and a Wisconsin business owner who is a Walker supporter and has ties to the GOP establishment.
The first 12 minutes of Cavuto's hour-long program were dedicated to a sit-down interview with Walker, during which he repeatedly claimed that his "reforms are working," though evidence shows otherwise. Cavuto stated at the end of the program that he asked Walker's Democratic opponent, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, to be on the show as well.
Johnson and DeMint also appeared on Your World. They were interviewed separately, each predicting that Walker will be tomorrow's victor. Both senators were questioned exclusively about the recall effort.
Fox News contributor David Rivkin, a former official in the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations, today falsely accused Attorney General Eric Holder of giving African-American leaders and preachers what was essentially a campaign speech when he attended a summit of the Congressional Black Caucus and the Conference of National Black Churches. Rivkin slammed Holder for "going to a number of black pastors and giving them speeches that, in fact, amount to electioneering -- telling them, supposedly, well, this is what you can say to your parishioners. There is an effort to disenfranchise you."
Rivkin added that Holder's speech was "100 percent identical to the campaign message of his boss."
This is at least the second time this week that host Megyn Kelly has allowed a guest on her show to launch a false attack against Holder over his remarks. And, once again, she made no attempt to correct the smear.
In fact, contrary to what Rivkin claimed, Holder actually spoke about "recent fears and frustrations about some of the state-level voting law changes we've seen this legislative season." He added: "For today's Department of Justice, our commitment to strengthening -- and to fulfilling -- our nation's promise of equal opportunity and equal justice has never been stronger." Holder went on to say:
HOLDER: As you know -- and have worked to draw attention to -- the past two years have brought nearly two dozen new state laws and executive orders, from more than a dozen states, that could make it significantly harder for many eligible voters to cast ballots in 2012. In response to some of these changes -- in areas covered by Section 5 [of the 1965 Voting Rights Act] -- the Justice Department has initiated careful, thorough, and independent reviews. We're now examining a number of redistricting plans in covered jurisdictions, as well as other types of changes to our election systems and processes -- including changes to the procedures governing third-party voter registration organizations, to early voting procedures, and to photo identification requirements -- to ensure that there is no discriminatory purpose or effect.
If a state passes a new voting law and meets its burden of showing that the law is not discriminatory, we will follow the law and approve the change. And, as we have demonstrated repeatedly, when a jurisdiction fails to meet its burden of proving that a proposed voting change would not have a racially discriminatory effect - we will object, as we have in 15 separate cases since last September.
Mitt Romney's remarks at Solyndra were full of falsehoods that went unchecked by many major media outlets. The media also largely failed to point out that as governor of Massachusetts, Romney invested in several companies that subsequently went bankrupt or defaulted on state loans.
Fox News is attempting to downplay and discredit its own poll, which found that if the election were held today, voters would re-elect President Obama by a 7-point margin. This is hardly the first time Fox has tried to distort poll findings to advance a certain narrative.
Fox News is decrying the inclusion of needed provisions in the Violence Against Women Act that would protect immigrants, Native Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered individuals from domestic abuse. Critics contend that not extending these protections would render victims more vulnerable to domestic violence.
During a Fox segment today about an investigation into thousands of Florida residents who have allegedly registered to vote, even though they're not U.S. citizens, anchor Bill Hemmer referred to voter ID laws that, in this case, would not address the problem. Discussing the story with guest Hans Von Spakovsky, a Pajamas Media blogger and former DOJ Civil Rights Division official who has pushed for adopting these laws, Hemmer asked:
HEMMER: But, here are what the critics are saying: The minority and the college students, those are the people you are after. You're trying to affect the outcome of an election, whether it's on the county level, or the state level, or ultimately what we saw in 2000, on the national level. How do you respond to that charge?
Fox even aired this voter ID law fact during the segment:
However, as the Miami Herald reported, the problem here has to do with the fact that legal residents, non-citizens who have photo IDs -- including driver's licenses -- appear to have registered to vote:
Nearly 2,700 potential non-U.S. citizens are registered to vote in Florida and some could have been unlawfully casting ballots for years, according to a Miami Herald-CBS4 analysis of elections data.
The bulk of the potential non-citizen voters are in Florida's largest county, Miami-Dade, where the elections supervisor is combing through a list of nearly 2,000 names and contacting them.
An analysis of a partial list of 350 names showed that about 104 have cast ballots going as far back as 1996.
Even if voters are on the list, it doesn't mean they're not eligible to cast a ballot.
The Herald added:
Consider the case of Miami's Maria Ginorio, a 64-year-old from Cuba, who said she became a U.S. citizen in August 2009. She said she was angered by a letter she received asking her to go to the elections office to document her status. Ginorio, who said she typically votes by absentee ballot, is ill and homebound.
"I'm not going to do anything about this,'' Ginorio said. "I can't. I guess I won't vote anymore. I say this with pain in my heart, because voting is my right as a citizen.''
Citizens like Ginorio were flagged as potential ineligible voters after the state's Division of Elections compared its database with a database maintained by Florida's Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, which records whether a new driver is a U.S. citizen when he or she gets a license.
As a result, some citizens could appear to be non citizens now because the DHSMV computer system doesn't automatically update when someone becomes a citizen, said Chris Cate, a spokesman with the Florida Division of Elections.
Rush Limbaugh attacked President Obama today over his support for marriage equality, accusing Obama of leading a "war on traditional marriage" and the Catholic Church while accusing same-sex marriage supporters of wanting "to corrupt the institution." However, polls show that public support for same-sex marriage has been trending upwards over the past several years, including in the Catholic community.
Fox News anchor Martha MacCallum has a habit of defending GOP talking points. During a conversation with Sen. Tom Coburn today, she continued the practice, scoffing at Democratic suggestions on how to help reduce the deficit and increase revenue:
MacCALLUM: I think everybody in this country, Democrats and Republicans across the board, know that there need to be some spending cuts in order to move -- in order to protect the country, basically, from complete default. But Democrats will tell you, as you hear all the time, that if you just, you know, tax wealthy people more, and you take, you know, raise taxes on oil companies, that you're going to go a long way to solving the problem. That's what they believe.
SENATOR COBURN: Well, they know that's not true.
Coburn went on to say that those Democratic proposals wouldn't make a dent in the deficit, adding that "this is all about politics, this is all about November, this is silly time in Washington -- unfortunately, it's silly time all the time in Washington 'cause there's no grownups up here." MacCallum replied: "I was just gonna say, I think a lot of folks feel like it extends throughout the year."
In fact, the Democrats' budget proposals amount to more than just "tax wealthy people more" and "raise taxes on oil companies" -- measures Fox News has stridently defended against in its rush to protect the rich and tax breaks for oil and gas companies.