Diary

WaPo fact-checker needs a new rating for Obama on Libya

The rating scale used by the Washington Post fact checker consists of 1-4 Pinocchios for lies, a Gepetto checkmark for 100% truthfulness, or a teetering scale if it’s unclear.

The latest piece there about Obama’s position on Libya starts with quotes in Boston Globe interviews from Senators Obama, Biden, and Clinton from 2007 saying that Bush had better not launch any sort of military action without first getting Congressional approval.

He adds that Gingrinch seems to be flipping and flopping (not sure why that’s in there), but he also notes that the Iraq War did have Congressional approval, whereas Clinton did not when sending troops to Haiti in 1993, launching two weeks of airstrikes in Bosnia in 1995, and doing four days of bombing in Iraq in 1998. (Apparently Obama is following the precedent that only Republican Presidents require Congressional approval to act.)

In trying to rate Obama’s truthfulness, he sums it up with:

This is a tough one to judge on the Pinocchio scale, because it does not involve an outright falsehood. This is more of a flip-flop, since we cannot find much consistency between Obama’s 2007 statement and his current stance on the Libya intervention. So we will, for the first time, award an upside-down Pinocchio, signifying a change in a previously held position. On the Libya war, where you sit is where you stand.

upside-down Pinocchio