Accuracy in Media

20120515_obama_sebelis+obamacare

On the heels of last week’s editorial claiming that President Obama “misspoke” when he promised Americans that if they liked their health insurance they could keep it under Obamacare, The New York Times is now calling it an “incorrect promise:”

The split between lawmakers and the White House reflects the dilemma the president finds himself in as he seeks to follow through on last week’s acknowledgment about his incorrect promise [emphasis added] on health care coverage. Hundreds of thousands of people have received cancellation notices from health insurance companies because their plans do not conform with minimum standards set by the new law.

Exactly what is an “incorrect promise?”

Promises can be “broken,” “false,” and “unfulfilled,” but “incorrect?” I don’t think so.

Even the Times’ public editor Margaret Sullivan was confused by the phrase:

It is an awkward phrase and, as Dylan Byers at Politico wrote, linguistically dubious. What, exactly, is an incorrect promise, anyway? Something more direct like “false promise” would have been both clearer and more accurate.

That’s the second time in a week that Sullivan has come up with an alternative to what was written in the paper about Obama. But once again she stopped short of calling the President a liar, showing the lengths the paper will go to sugarcoat the truth and protect the Liar in Chief.





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