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Latest from W. Gardner Selby

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PolitiFact: Islamic State-inspired attacks have often used vehicles
 U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul said that when a man drove a truck into pedestrians and bicyclists in New York, killing eight, the attack fit a perilous international pattern. The Austin Republican, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, made his claim after being asked by Bret Baier of Fox News to share what he knew. McCaul replied:...

Posted: 8 days ago

U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul said that when a man drove a truck into pedestrians and bicyclists in New York, killing eight, the attack fit a perilous international pattern. The Austin Republican, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, made his claim after being asked by Bret Baier of Fox News to share what he knew. McCaul replied:...
PolitiFact: Few prosecutions of failed gun applicants
 U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has suggested that President Barack Obama’s administration bears some responsibility for the mass shooter in a Texas town acquiring guns. In a Fox News interview Monday, the Republican senator said that he’d spent the day comforting residents of Sutherland Springs. Cruz said he felt his anger rising...

Posted: 9 days ago

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has suggested that President Barack Obama’s administration bears some responsibility for the mass shooter in a Texas town acquiring guns. In a Fox News interview Monday, the Republican senator said that he’d spent the day comforting residents of Sutherland Springs. Cruz said he felt his anger rising...
Fake news: Church gunman was anti-fascist seeking ‘communist’ uprising
 A fake news story about the killer in a mass shooting at a Texas church said the gunman was an anti-fascist looking to sow chaos in the hope of starting a civil war, the fact-checking PolitiFact team reports. The headline on a Nov. 5, 2017, story on ThirdEstateNewsGroup.com read, “Texas Church shooter was Antifa and wanted to start...

Posted: 13 days ago

A fake news story about the killer in a mass shooting at a Texas church said the gunman was an anti-fascist looking to sow chaos in the hope of starting a civil war, the fact-checking PolitiFact team reports. The headline on a Nov. 5, 2017, story on ThirdEstateNewsGroup.com read, “Texas Church shooter was Antifa and wanted to start...
Texas church shooter was not on Democrats’ payroll. That’s fake news.
 It’s not so—it is fake news—that the Texas man who shot and killed 26 people while injuring 20 others was a Democratic activist motivated by atheism, PolitiFact has ruled. In a fact-check posted Monday, the Washington-based site said that bloggers on Freedumjunkshun.com, a self-avowed fake news website, portrayed...

Posted: 13 days ago

It’s not so—it is fake news—that the Texas man who shot and killed 26 people while injuring 20 others was a Democratic activist motivated by atheism, PolitiFact has ruled. In a fact-check posted Monday, the Washington-based site said that bloggers on Freedumjunkshun.com, a self-avowed fake news website, portrayed...
In ‘15, Greg Abbott ‘embarrassed’ Texans bought fewer guns than others
 Gov. Greg Abbott posted a tweet in 2015 expressing his chagrin at Texans seeking to buy fewer guns than Californians. What Abbott tweeted: “I’m EMBARRASSED: Texas #2 in nation for new gun purchases, behind California.” Embarrassment or not, the governor’s gun-purchase proclamation likely wasn’t accurate, the...

Posted: 13 days ago

Gov. Greg Abbott posted a tweet in 2015 expressing his chagrin at Texans seeking to buy fewer guns than Californians. What Abbott tweeted: “I’m EMBARRASSED: Texas #2 in nation for new gun purchases, behind California.” Embarrassment or not, the governor’s gun-purchase proclamation likely wasn’t accurate, the...
PolitiFact: Opposition aplenty within GOP to Straus
 Before Texas House Speaker Joe Straus disclosed that he wouldn’t seek re-election in 2018, a group declared that activists accounting for more than half the state’s Republican electorate had called for House leaders to skedaddle. The New Leadership PAC introduced itself in an October press release stating: “NLP is the culmination...

Posted: 16 days ago

Before Texas House Speaker Joe Straus disclosed that he wouldn’t seek re-election in 2018, a group declared that activists accounting for more than half the state’s Republican electorate had called for House leaders to skedaddle. The New Leadership PAC introduced itself in an October press release stating: “NLP is the culmination...
PolitiFact: Ted Cruz has flip-flopped on filibuster rule
 U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, famous and infamous for his 2013 filibuster-like talk-a-thon that included his reading a Dr. Seuss story to his daughters watching from home, no longer favors preserving a rule that makes it hard to stop a filibuster. Did the Texas senator flip-flop? We put that question to our PolitiFact Texas Flip-O-Meter. In the 100-person...

Posted: 23 days ago

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, famous and infamous for his 2013 filibuster-like talk-a-thon that included his reading a Dr. Seuss story to his daughters watching from home, no longer favors preserving a rule that makes it hard to stop a filibuster. Did the Texas senator flip-flop? We put that question to our PolitiFact Texas Flip-O-Meter. In the 100-person...
PolitiFact: Group wrongly understates county bond impact
 Proponents of Travis County transportation and parks bond proposals on the November ballot made an enticing pitch to older homeowners in a mailer, telling them that their taxes are frozen and they won’t pay more if the bonds pass. Travis Forward, a pro-bonds PAC, said in the mailer: “The Travis County propositions will not raise...

Posted: 25 days ago

Proponents of Travis County transportation and parks bond proposals on the November ballot made an enticing pitch to older homeowners in a mailer, telling them that their taxes are frozen and they won’t pay more if the bonds pass. Travis Forward, a pro-bonds PAC, said in the mailer: “The Travis County propositions will not raise...
Joe Straus has mostly fared well on PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter
 Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, who revealed today he’s not seeking re-election in 2018, has faced the PolitiFact Texas Truth-O-Meter five times—mostly faring well. In July, most recently, the fact-checking project based at the Austin American-Statesman found True the claim by Straus that the Austin school district was expected...

Posted: 25 days ago

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, who revealed today he’s not seeking re-election in 2018, has faced the PolitiFact Texas Truth-O-Meter five times—mostly faring well. In July, most recently, the fact-checking project based at the Austin American-Statesman found True the claim by Straus that the Austin school district was expected...
PolitiFact: Doggett mixes tax numbers, but rich still get richer
 U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Austin, told congressional colleagues that President Donald Trump’s plan to cut taxes would mostly benefit America’s wealthiest. “Eighty percent of the tax breaks in this proposal go to the top 1 percent — that is, people making more than $730,000 a year,” Doggett said on the House...

Posted: 30 days ago

U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Austin, told congressional colleagues that President Donald Trump’s plan to cut taxes would mostly benefit America’s wealthiest. “Eighty percent of the tax breaks in this proposal go to the top 1 percent — that is, people making more than $730,000 a year,” Doggett said on the House...
PolitiFact: Is the Alamo a ‘disappointing landmark’
 A website intended to defend the master plan for spiffing up the Alamo says tourists remain far from wowed by the historically revered site. We were intrigued by this claim on the Alamo Truth site, which is funded by Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush’s political campaign: “The Alamo has been consistently listed as one of...

Posted: 30 days ago

A website intended to defend the master plan for spiffing up the Alamo says tourists remain far from wowed by the historically revered site. We were intrigued by this claim on the Alamo Truth site, which is funded by Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush’s political campaign: “The Alamo has been consistently listed as one of...
UPDATED: Has Ted Cruz called Social Security a Ponzi scheme?
 U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, insisted in a nationally cablecast debate this week that he’s not called Social Security a Ponzi scheme. If not, the fact-checking PolitiFact Texas project confirms, Cruz tiptoed darned close to saying so about six years past. A Ponzi scheme refers to an enterprise that generates returns for older investors...

5:21 PM Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, insisted in a nationally cablecast debate this week that he’s not called Social Security a Ponzi scheme. If not, the fact-checking PolitiFact Texas project confirms, Cruz tiptoed darned close to saying so about six years past. A Ponzi scheme refers to an enterprise that generates returns for older investors...
PolitiFact: 1 of 10 babies is born in Texas
 A Fort Worth pediatrician who supports continued federal backing of health insurance for children of the working poor suggested it’s an important issue in these parts because 10 percent of Americans start as Texans. Joyce Mauk, president of the Texas Pediatric Society, was quoted by the American-Statesman as saying: “One in 10...

5:00 AM Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017

A Fort Worth pediatrician who supports continued federal backing of health insurance for children of the working poor suggested it’s an important issue in these parts because 10 percent of Americans start as Texans. Joyce Mauk, president of the Texas Pediatric Society, was quoted by the American-Statesman as saying: “One in 10...
PolitiFact: Taxes, but not tax rate, expected to rise with school bond
 A handout urging voter support for a proposed $1.05 billion Austin school district bond issue on the November ballot singles out the need to repair and renovate schools averaging 40 years of age and a desire to modernize or build 16 schools. Moreover, the handout from the Committee of Austin’s Children PAC says: “Did you know?...

8:20 PM Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017

A handout urging voter support for a proposed $1.05 billion Austin school district bond issue on the November ballot singles out the need to repair and renovate schools averaging 40 years of age and a desire to modernize or build 16 schools. Moreover, the handout from the Committee of Austin’s Children PAC says: “Did you know?...
PolitiFact: Cruz touts his ‘town halls,’ but were they really?
 He’s not Waldo. But could it be that U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz doesn’t get personally grilled by constituents very often? Cruz, poised to seek re-election as Texas’ junior Republican senator in 2018, hardly has a reputation for avoiding attention. After all, he ran for president shortly after making waves in Washington and held...

5:00 AM Sunday, Oct. 08, 2017

He’s not Waldo. But could it be that U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz doesn’t get personally grilled by constituents very often? Cruz, poised to seek re-election as Texas’ junior Republican senator in 2018, hardly has a reputation for avoiding attention. After all, he ran for president shortly after making waves in Washington and held...
PolitiFact: Analysis backs claim of jump in Obamacare premiums
 Sen. John Cornyn accurately told a Texas constituent that residents of a third of U.S. counties are down to a single choice of insurance plans under the Obamacare law that Republicans have vowed to repeal. PolitiFact this year rated True a similar claim. According to a 2016 analysis, people trying to purchase insurance on a government exchange...

10:33 PM Friday, Oct. 06, 2017

Sen. John Cornyn accurately told a Texas constituent that residents of a third of U.S. counties are down to a single choice of insurance plans under the Obamacare law that Republicans have vowed to repeal. PolitiFact this year rated True a similar claim. According to a 2016 analysis, people trying to purchase insurance on a government exchange...
PolitiFact: Will Austin grow by 50%? That’s on the low side.
 San Marcos Mayor John Thomaides floated big numbers in a tweet suggesting the Austin metropolitan area is on pace to outgrow all other places nationally in coming decades. “Metro population will grow by 67 million people over the next 30 years,” Thomaides wrote, referring to urban areas across the United States. “Austin...

5:00 AM Sunday, Sep. 24, 2017

San Marcos Mayor John Thomaides floated big numbers in a tweet suggesting the Austin metropolitan area is on pace to outgrow all other places nationally in coming decades. “Metro population will grow by 67 million people over the next 30 years,” Thomaides wrote, referring to urban areas across the United States. “Austin...
PolitiFact: Cruz’s defense of sex toy law was strictly professional
 Among darts tossed at Sen. Ted Cruz after his Twitter account “liked” a sexual video clip was an allegation that Cruz has backed a ban on sex toys. The New York Post tweeted: “This is the same senator who once supported a ban on sex toys.” We’re unaware of Cruz, elected in 2012 and seeking re-election in 2018...

5:00 AM Saturday, Sep. 23, 2017

Among darts tossed at Sen. Ted Cruz after his Twitter account “liked” a sexual video clip was an allegation that Cruz has backed a ban on sex toys. The New York Post tweeted: “This is the same senator who once supported a ban on sex toys.” We’re unaware of Cruz, elected in 2012 and seeking re-election in 2018...
PolitiFact: Cruz and O’Rourke running ‘neck and neck’? Maybe.
 A West Texas Democrat seeking to represent the state in the U.S. Senate asserts that he’s already running even with incumbent Ted Cruz. In a Facebook post, El Paso U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s campaign said: “Beto O’Rourke out-raised Senator Ted Cruz in the second financial quarter without taking a DIME from PACs...

5:00 AM Sunday, Sep. 17, 2017

A West Texas Democrat seeking to represent the state in the U.S. Senate asserts that he’s already running even with incumbent Ted Cruz. In a Facebook post, El Paso U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s campaign said: “Beto O’Rourke out-raised Senator Ted Cruz in the second financial quarter without taking a DIME from PACs...
PolitiFact: Paxton says DACA granted citizenship. It didn’t.
 Texas’ attorney general hailed President Donald Trump’s move to rescind President Barack Obama’s executive action affording young unauthorized immigrants protection from deportation. Moreover, Attorney General Ken Paxton charged in a recent press release, Obama “used that lawful-presence dispensation to unilaterally...

8:44 PM Friday, Sep. 15, 2017

Texas’ attorney general hailed President Donald Trump’s move to rescind President Barack Obama’s executive action affording young unauthorized immigrants protection from deportation. Moreover, Attorney General Ken Paxton charged in a recent press release, Obama “used that lawful-presence dispensation to unilaterally...
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