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Fox News' Bill O'Reilly and Dennis Miller falsely suggested President Obama supported California's Proposition 8. After Miller described a call to his radio show in which the caller suggested that "had [Obama] been a California resident," he "would have voted for Proposition 8," O'Reilly stated that the caller "probably listened to The Radio Factor and then called you because we had said that." In fact, Obama opposed Proposition 8.
On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed that "the Democrats in charge of the finance committees" resisted efforts by the Bush administration to regulate the mortgage industry and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in particular. In fact, it was only after the Democrats did gain control of both "finance committees" in Congress in 2007 that Congress passed legislation strengthening oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
On his radio and television shows, Bill O'Reilly advanced the falsehood that "the average autoworker now makes 70 bucks an hour." In fact, a recent Barclays Capital analysis reportedly found that the average U.S. autoworker is paid "an average of $55 an hour in wages and benefits."
On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed that prior to the housing crisis, Rep. Barney Frank had been "pumping it that poor people ought to be given mortgages 'cause everybody has a right to a house." In fact, Frank has consistently taken the position that the government should focus on the expansion of affordable rental housing, rather than enacting policies geared toward universal home ownership.
Fox News' Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed that Rep. Barney Frank, "who was supposed to be in charge of oversight, running the House Finance Committee, he didn't do his job because he was ideologically blinded. He wanted to give mortgages to everybody." In fact, Frank has advocated for policies that emphasize low-income home rentals as opposed to homeownership.
On his radio and television shows, Bill O'Reilly claimed that the food-stamp provision in the economic recovery bill will not stimulate the economy. But economists, including the director of the bipartisan Congressional Budget Office and a reported adviser to the presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain, disagree.
On his Fox News show, Bill O'Reilly baselessly characterized the OneUnited Bank -- which received a $12 million federal loan under a provision of the Troubled Asset Relief Program written by Rep. Barney Frank -- as "Barney Frank's bank." But O'Reilly provided no evidence that Frank has a financial stake in the bank, and The Boston Globe reported that "OneUnited executives have not contributed to Frank's congressional campaigns, according to the database of Center for Responsive Politics."
On The O'Reilly Factor, Dick Morris repeatedly criticized Treasury Secretary-designate Timothy Geithner for his failure to pay Social Security taxes several years ago. But Morris has his own history of tax delinquency; USA Today included Morris in an April 2008 report on "[b]ig names" who are tax delinquents.
On his radio show, Bill O'Reilly advanced the falsehood that a 1995 memo written by then-Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick prohibited intelligence-sharing between the FBI and the CIA, thereby causing the intelligence failures that led to the 9-11 attacks, and asserted that Eric Holder, along with Janet Reno and Gorelick, "said that the CIA and the FBI couldn't talk to each other on investigative matters." In fact, the Gorelick memo had no impact on communications between the FBI and the CIA, the Department of Defense, or any other agencies.
Bill O'Reilly again falsely claimed that the Army Field Manual "says, quote, 'You are not to make any captured person uncomfortable in any way.' " In fact, the Army Field Manual includes an entire section on "Interrogation Operations," which includes several techniques and strategies that make detainees "uncomfortable."
On The O'Reilly Factor, Dennis Miller ridiculed Thomas Beatie, a transgender man who recently gave birth to a child, calling him a "nympho satyr" and saying: "[A]ll I know is the guy's more pregnant than the old woman in the shoe is. And somebody has got to get some protection for this guy, be it a condom or an IUD or a satellite dish or a catcher's mitt. I don't even know what he needs down there, but I need an equipment check on aisle five." Referring to the baby, Miller had video of the polar bear cub at the Berlin zoo aired.
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On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly claimed that "[t]he Army Field Manual bans any questioning that would make a suspect uncomfortable in any way," echoing his previous assertion that "[t]here is no interrogation under the manual. No unpleasantness." In fact, the Army Field Manual includes an entire section on "Interrogation Operations," as well as a chapter listing and describing "Approach Techniques and Termination Strategies" for use in interrogations of detainees, including several techniques intended to make detainees "uncomfortable."
MSNBC's Keith Olbermann named Bill O'Reilly the runner-up in his nightly "Worst Person in the World" segment, saying that O'Reilly "called the media watchdog site, Media Matters, quote, 'the most dishonest website in the country,' because, well, it accurately quoted him, lying."
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Attacking Media Matters on his radio show for noting that his previous claim that Sen. Norm Coleman "was certified the winner" in the Minnesota Senate race was false, Bill O'Reilly repeated the falsehood, claiming: "[W]hat I said was, Coleman's victory was certified by the state because it was. He had 215 more votes, which is absolutely true." In fact, the Minnesota State Canvassing Board did not "certif[y]" a "victory" for Coleman or Al Franken, having authorized an automatic recount of ballots for that race; Minnesota election law states that "no certificate of election shall be prepared or delivered until after the recount is completed."