Rachel Maddow let the folks at Politifact have it again on her Tuesday show.
Maddow, who is a harsh critic of the organization and its "truth-o-meter," discussed how she felt the organization was "shockingly, shockingly bad" at accomplishing its main goal of fact-checking claims made by members of the government.
Maddow said that she has "lost [her] mind more than once recently about how bad Politifact is, and how anybody who values the meaning of the word fact needs to stop citing them as an authority on the subject of facts." On Tuesday's show, Maddow discussed how Politifact looked into Sen. Marco Rubio's recent claim that the "majority of Americans are conservative."
"So, to sum up," Maddow said. "Marco Rubio says, 'the majority of Americans are conservative.' Politifact looks into that and finds that a majority of Americans do not identify as conservative. And even if you wanted to extrapolate to parties...Republican-leaning instead of conservative...that still doesn't get you to a majority either. So, according to Politifact, Rubio's statement is false." Maddow then turned to Politifact's "truth-o-meter" which concluded that Rubio's statement is "mostly true."
Maddow yelled, "Seriously? Claim A: false. Claim B: false. Overall Politifact rating: mostly true!" Maddow was so angry that she told Politifact to "please leave the building." She asked the organization to leave the lights on as "we will need them to clean up the mess that you have left behind...You are a disaster."
Maddow added that she did not expect to end the Valentine's Day show on this particular note, "but oh my god!"
Politifact editor Bill Adair responded to Maddow's criticism. Read his statement below.
"Our goal at PolitiFact is to use the Truth-O-Meter to show the relative accuracy of a political claim. In this case, we rated it Mostly True because we felt that while the number was short of a majority, it was still a plurality. Forty percent of Americans consider themselves conservative, 35 percent moderate and 21 percent liberal. It wasn’t quite a majority, but was close.
We don’t expect our readers to agree with every ruling we make. We have published nearly 5,000 Truth-O-Meter ratings and it’s natural that anyone can find some they disagree with. But even if you don’t agree with every call we make, our research and analysis helps you sort out what’s true in the political discourse."
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