Open Thread: Politifact's 2010 'Lie of the Year'

"A government takeover of health care." Writes Politifact:

...as Republicans smelled serious opportunity in the midterm elections, they didn't let facts get in the way of a great punchline. And few in the press challenged their frequent assertion that under Obama, the government was going to take over the health care industry.

PolitiFact editors and reporters have chosen "government takeover of health care" as the 2010 Lie of the Year. Uttered by dozens of politicians and pundits, it played an important role in shaping public opinion about the health care plan and was a significant factor in the Democrats' shellacking in the November elections...

The phrase is simply not true.

Said Jonathan Oberlander, a professor of health policy at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill: "The label 'government takeover" has no basis in reality, but instead reflects a political dynamic where conservatives label any increase in government authority in health care as a 'takeover.' "

This is actually the second year in a row that Politifact, which is owned by the St. Petersburg Times, has dubbed an ObamaCare-related claim its Lie of the Year. In 2009, the honor went to Sarah Palin's "death panels" claim, even though that claim was not really a lie. And in fact, the specter of death panels resurfaced a day before Politifact gave its 2010 LOTY award.

But what of this year's award? Click through to Politifact for more on how they reached their decision. Do you think "government takeover of health care" deserves the title? Are there other lies that you would have chosen?

NB Staff
NB Staff