An Investor's Business Daily editorial stated, "Starting in the early 1990s," Rep. Barney Frank "(and other Democrats) stood athwart efforts by regulators, Congress and the White House to get the runaway housing market under control." It specified that "[i]n 2002, Frank nixed reforms" of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and that in 2003, "led by Frank, Democrats stood as a bloc against any changes" that President Bush proposed making to Fannie and Freddie. But in 2002 and 2003, Republicans controlled the House and could have passed legislation regarding Fannie and Freddie in the House without the support of Frank or any other Democrats.
In criticizing a large-scale economic stimulus plan favored by President-elect Barack Obama and congressional Democrats, an Investor's Business Daily editorial echoed other media by citing the New Deal and Japan's "lost decade" as purported evidence that stimulus spending is "the least effective way to give the economy a boost." However, according to prominent economists, economic conditions in 1930s America and 1990s Japan were improving following major increases in stimulus spending -- trends that were reversed only when the respective governments decided to cut spending and raise taxes in an attempt to reduce the deficit.
Accusing Sen. Barack Obama of "arrogance," an Investor's Business Daily editorial stated that "Obama has also been acting as if he's got the presidency in the bag," and then quoted Obama telling a crowd in Virginia: "I feel like we got a righteous wind at our backs here." But IBD cropped Obama's full statement; Obama said immediately afterward: "[B]ut we're going to have to work. We're going to have to struggle. We're going to have to fight for every single one of those 13 days to move this country in a new direction."
Several conservatives in the media have recently blamed the Community Reinvestment Act for the current financial crisis -- when, in fact, the CRA does not apply to institutions making the vast majority of troubled loans underlying the crisis. It applies only to depository institutions, such as banks and savings and loan associations. Experts have estimated that 80 percent of high-priced subprime loans were offered by financial institutions that are not subject to the CRA.
Investor's Business Daily wrote in an editorial: "Does Barack Obama owe his meteoric rise to an Israeli-hating adviser to a Saudi billionaire? Why did a race-baiting mentor to the Black Panthers favor this yet unknown community organizer?" IBD noted that former Manhattan borough president Percy Sutton claimed that he was introduced to Obama by "a friend raising money for him," that the purported friend, Khalid al-Mansour, asked Sutton to "write a letter in support of Obama's application to Harvard law school." But IBD did not note that the Obama campaign has denied the story or that al-Mansour has said that he has never met Obama and did not ask Sutton to write a letter on Obama's behalf.
Summary: In an editorial, Investor's Business Daily wrote that after Kenyan politician Raila Odinga lost his country's presidential election in late 2007, "angry Odinga supporters crying fraud sparked riots that resulted in some 1,500 deaths. Amid his ancestral country's civil unrest, [Sen. Barack] Obama took time out from the campaign trail to phone Odinga to voice his support." However, while IBD claimed that Obama phoned Odinga to "voice his support," Obama and his campaign have reportedly said that he pressed Odinga to conduct unconditional negotiations to end the violence during the phone conversation, which was reportedly approved by the State Department.
In an editorial, Investor's Business Daily falsely claimed that the Global Poverty Act of 2007, sponsored by Sen. Barack Obama, "would force U.S. taxpayers to fork over 0.7% of our gross domestic product every year to fund a global war on poverty, spending well above the $16.3 billion in global poverty aid the U.S. already spends." In fact, the bill would establish no specific funding source and would not commit the United States to any targeted level of spending.
An Investor's Business Daily article claimed that the Supreme Court ruling that overturned a handgun ban in the District of Columbia "is a potential lifeline for [Sen. John] McCain, who has failed so far to unite conservative voters behind him," many of whom "still resent his 'maverick' positions on taxes and immigration." But the article did not mention that McCain has reversed his positions on taxes and immigration, adopting positions more closely conforming to the views of the GOP base on both issues.
In criticizing Sen. Barack Obama for proposing to "lift the tax cap on earnings subject to the 12.4% Social Security tax, which now covers only the first $102,000," an Investor's Business Daily editorial quoted a false assertion made by George Will that a "Chicago police officer married to a Chicago public-school teacher, each with 20 years on the job, have a household income of $147,501, so you (Obama) would take another $5,642 from them." Newsweek issued a correction of Will's false claim the day before the IBD editorial appeared.
Commenting on Sen. Barack Obama's August 2007 statement that "All our top military commanders recognize that there is no military solution in Iraq," Investor's Business Daily wrote, "Except, of course, for Gen. David Petraeus." But three months earlier, Petraeus had said during a news conference, "I think, again, that any student of history recognizes that there is no military solution to a problem like that in Iraq, to the insurgency of Iraq."
In an editorial discussing recently killed spokesman of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia, "Raúl Reyes," and the fact that there was a reference to Sen. Barack Obama in one of the letters allegedly found on Reyes' computer, Investor's Business Daily claimed that the "little Obama reference ... signals a disturbing pattern of contacts with rogue actors." IBD further stated that "FARC seems to have an inside line to Obama's campaign." However, the letter offers no indication whatsoever that Reyes or FARC had any "contacts" with the Obama campaign.
In an email to readers encouraging recipients to read the National Journal article on the magazine's 2007 vote ratings, the National Journal Group wrote: "In 2004, President Bush invoked Senator John Kerry's liberal Vote Ratings score repeatedly on the campaign trail and at their head-to-head debates. We anticipate similar attention for our Vote Ratings across the 2008 election cycle." Numerous media did follow suit and tout the Journal's 2003 rating of Kerry. And once again, the media are giving the 2007 ratings the "similar attention" the National Journal Group anticipated -- despite the Journal's acknowledgment that the methodology it used to rate Kerry was flawed.
Investor's Business Daily asserted in an editorial that Barack Obama "permit[ed] the display of a huge Cuban flag at one of his offices, emblazoned with a mass murderer's mug" -- a reference to Che Guevara. In fact, the office in question is run and funded by Obama volunteers and is not sanctioned by the official Obama campaign. The editorial further claimed that Obama "dismiss[ed] ... his Senate colleagues who wear lapel flags as 'hypocrites.' " But a review of the Nexis database found no evidence that Obama has ever described any of his fellow members of Congress as "hypocrites" for wearing U.S. flag lapel pins.
Media Matters for America has identified numerous media outlets or figures who reported that the National Journal has rated Sen. Barack Obama "the most liberal senator in 2007," but did not report that the same National Journal feature stated that Sen. John McCain "did not vote frequently enough in 2007 to draw a composite score. He missed more than half of the votes in both the economic and foreign-policy categories."
An Investors' Business Daily editorial falsely asserted that "Bill Clinton says we must slow the economy to save the earth." In fact, Clinton said in the January 30 speech to which the editorial referred that "rich" countries could take that approach, but then he stated why he thought it wouldn't work and asserted that the "only way" to fight global warming is to prove that doing so "is good economics."