President Barack Obama's claim that Republican have filibustered close to 500 pieces of legislation that would have helped the middle class is inaccurate, says Glenn Kessler, author of the Washington Post's "Fact Checker" blog.
"There were a number of problems with it, one of which is that he appeared to be counting what are called cloture motions . . . actually filed by someone that wants to wrap up debate. It's not really what you would technically call a filibuster," Kessler told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"Even if you accepted that cloture motion was the equal of a filibuster, which it isn't, there is no way you get to 500 pieces of legislation, because that number, 500, which is a number that [Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid likes to use a lot, includes many nominations.
"In fact, probably two-thirds of those are nominations not having to do with legislation that would help the middle class," he said Wednesday.
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Kessler adds that Obama's math takes him all the way back to 2007, two years before he started his first term in the White House.
"He wasn't president but he was actually senator. So, in eight cases that I found, he was actually counting instances when he voted to not end debate," he said.
Kessler has awarded Obama "four Pinocchios" on the issue.
On the claims that have been tossed back and forth by Republicans and Democrats about the Benghazi attack on Sept. 11, 2012, Kessler says he has bestowed Pinnochios on members of both parties.
"In general what I found is that there is rhetorical overreach by Republicans and there was over-the-top spin from the White House, and the two going back and forth there," he said.
"There might still be [questions], not everything has been looked at and subpoenaed. But I can certainly see from [former Secretary of State Hillary] Clinton's perspective that she has felt that she has answered everything that she could answer.
"Something important to remember is that the secretary of state is at the top of a very large building where lots of things happen that the secretary doesn't know much about.''
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