Further Tying Credibility to Cicilline Campaign

I wonder if anybody at the Providence Journal — particularly on the PolitiFact crew — is concerned that, every few days, Cynthia Needham whacks a big chunk of their organization’s credibility off the table in the service of David Cicilline’s Congressional campaign. Last week, she gave David Cicilline a “mostly true” rating for his claim that John Loughlin “voted to let people accused of domestic violence keep their guns”:

Nowhere does the 2005 bill suggest one must be accused of a crime to have the statute apply.
Cicilline overstates the scope of the bill that Loughlin voted against. But he is correct to suggest that if Loughlin’s side had prevailed, those subject to domestic violence restraining orders would be allowed to keep their guns.

This week, she’s declaring an ad by Americans for Common Sense Solutions to be “barely true” even though it’s nearly identical in character to Cicilline’s claim:

In 1996, Rhode Island lawmakers took the existing sex offender registration law, which required convicted offenders to register with local police departments, and added language requiring police to notify the community. That vote took place while Cicilline, now the mayor of Providence, was still a state representative.
So how did he vote? The short answer is, he was one of three representatives who voted against it.

Probably realizing that she’s pushing the envelope on applying her political preferences as the deciding criterion in an ostensibly objective measure, Needham resorts to the PolitiFact rulebook:

PolitiFact’s definition of a Barely True statement says it “contains some element of truth, but ignores critical facts that would give a different impression.”

What a complete joke. The Providence Journal should consider whether there’s any relationship between this sort of thing and their sliding circulation.

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