Accuracy in Media

After analyzing CBS News’ fact-check of the Sunday night debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, Accuracy in Media discovered that there was a large discrepancy between fact-checking Trump versus fact-checking Clinton. Trump was fact-checked 16 times out of 19 times by CBS News, with Clinton fact-checked 3 times total. Of those fact-checks, Clinton had two facts rated ‘true’ and one ‘mostly-partly true’. Trump had 6 ‘false’ facts, 3 ‘true’ facts, 6 ‘mostly-partly true’ facts and 1 ‘unclear’ fact. Doesn’t this ratio seem unbalanced?

For example, why did CBS News confirm Clinton’s claim that there was no evidence of anyone hacking her e-mail server? Aren’t the recent hacking revelations confirmation of her e-mails being hacked? This is what the CBS News’ fact-check said:

CLINTON STATEMENT: “After a yearlong investigation there is no evidence that anyone hacked the server I was using. And there is no evidence that anyone can point to at all – anyone that says otherwise has no basis that any classified material ended up in the wrong hands. I take classified material very seriously…and always have.”

FACT CHECK: Mostly true, but with a caveat: though there’s no evidence Clinton’s server was accessed, as FBI Director James Comey noted, there would be little evidence if they had. Comey also notes there is evidence that a number of people that Clinton was in correspondence with did have their emails hacked.

On July 5, Comey said, “With respect to potential computer intrusion by hostile actors, we did not find direct evidence that Secretary Clinton’s personal email domain in its various configuration since 2009 was hacked successfully.”

Still, Comey said there may not necessarily be “direct evidence,” were the server to have been hacked. “We do assess that hostile actors gained access to the private commercial email accounts of people with whom Secretary Clinton was in regular contact from her personal account. We also assess that Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal domain was both known by a large number of people and readily apparent.”

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