Carly Fiorina Has Found a New Dedication to the Truth. Let’s Help Her Out.

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Good news! Carly Fiorina has turned over a new leaf and now admits that she was mistaken to say that 92 percent of the jobs lost under President Obama belonged to women:

“The fact-checkers are correct,” she said….Fiorina then criticized the “liberal media” for picking apart the statistic rather than her broader argument, which was that liberal polices are bad for women economically.

“It is factually true that the number of women living in extreme poverty is at the highest rate in recorded history,” she said. “It is factually true that 16.1 percent of women live below the poverty line, the highest level in 20 years. It is factually true that 3 million women have fallen into poverty.”

This is good news for fans of factually correct statistics. And Fiorina got all of her facts right! Still, since liberal media shill Martha Raddatz1 decided not to investigate any of these facts further, I’ll go ahead and make a few wee points myself:

  • Fiorina only looked at the women’s poverty rate for the past 20 years. Why? Because the highest levels ever were in 1982, under Ronald Reagan, and 1992, under George H.W. Bush.
  • It’s true that the absolute number of women in poverty is at its highest level ever. Needless to say, this is only because the population is bigger than it was under Reagan and Bush.
  • The current rate of women in poverty is indeed 16.1 percent according to the Census Bureau. Does this mean that liberal policies are bad for women? Well, that number went up 3 percent during George W. Bush’s term and has (so far) gone down 0.2 percent during Barack Obama’s term. I report, you decide.2

Since Fiorina is now dedicated to getting her facts straight, I figured she’d appreciate this clarification. You’re welcome, Carly.

1You may recall her as the moderator of the vice-presidential debate in 2012, during which she pummeled Paul Ryan over and over about his fantasy budget math.

2But in case you’re having trouble deciding, the basic answer here is that poverty goes up during recessions and goes down during economic expansions. The only exceptions to this rule are under George H.W. Bush, who saw an increase starting in 1989, and George W. Bush, who oversaw in increase starting in 2006.

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This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

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