PolitiFact on Equal Pay: ‘Mostly True’, ‘Mostly False’, and ‘Half True’

So, let’s see what PolitFact has to say about all these equal pay claims, shall we?

First they fact-checked this statement from President Obama dated June 21, 2012. . .

“Women (are) paid 77 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men.”

. . . and found it “Mostly False”:

The Obama campaign took a legitimate statistic and described it in a way that makes it sound much more dramatic than it actually is. The 77-cent figure is real, but it does not factor in occupations held, hours worked or length of tenure. Describing that statistic as referring to the pay for women “doing the same work as men” earns it a rating of Mostly False.

Then they fact-checked this statement from President Obama dated January 28, 2014. . .

Women “make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns.”

. . .and found it “Mostly True”:

It’s worth noting that the entire 77-cent gap is not necessarily due to discrimination — a conclusion some listeners might have drawn when hearing Obama mention “equal pay for equal work” shortly after citing the 77-cent figure. And there are alternative calculations that show a smaller overall gap. Still, the 77-cent ratio is a credible figure from a credible agency. We rate the claim Mostly True.

Some of the other rulings on equal pay. . .

Terry McAuliffe: ”Women still earn about 77 cents for every dollar a man earns for working the same job.” — “Mostly False

Wendy Davis: Women “are still paid 82 cents for every dollar a man earns in Texas.” — “Mostly True

Wendy Davis: ”Texas women make an average of $8,355 less per year than men doing the very same job.” — “Mostly False

Jimmy Carter: Women in the U.S. get 23 percent less pay than men for the same exact work. — “Mostly False

And this next one deserves a specil mention. . .

Gina Raimondo: ”Women make 77 cents for every dollar earned by men.” — “Half True

The problem is that in the “Mostly True” rulings, PolitFact goes on to explain why the 77-cent number is too simplistic. So, why rule that they statements are “Mostly True” when the intent of the speaker is to obfuscate? 

And look again: Raimondo said basically the same thing as Obama, but Obama gets it “Mostly True”  and the woman only gets it “Half True.” Maybe women are given only 77 percent as much credibility as men at PolitiFact . . .




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