Obama strained to portray himself as willing to break ranks with fellow Democrats. His prime example was his vote for a bill that was supported by 18 Democrats and opposed by 26. Congressional Quarterly rates him as voting with his party 97 percent of the time since becoming a U.S. senator.

Obama incorrectly claimed all of McCain’s ads had been “negative.” That was true for one recent week, but not over the entire campaign. And at times Obama has run a higher percentage of attack ads than McCain.

Obama repeated a dubious claim that his health care plan will cut the average family’s premiums by $2,500 a year. Experts have found that figure to be overly optimistic.

Obama wasn't entirely forthcoming about his relationship with ACORN:
Obama: The only involvement I've had with ACORN is, I represented them alongside the U.S. Justice Department in making Illinois implement a motor voter law that helped people get registered at DMVs.He did, but that wasn't his only involvement. He also worked closely with ACORN's Chicago office when he ran a Project Vote registration drive after law school, and Obama did some leadership training for Chicago ACORN. The Woods Fund, where Obama served as a board member, gave grants to ACORN's Chicago branch; both organizations are concerned with disadvantaged populations in that city. And during the primaries of this election, Obama's campaign paid upwards of $800,000 to the ACORN-affiliated Campaign Services Inc. for get-out-the-vote efforts (not voter registration). Those services were initially misrepresented on the campaign's Federal Election Commission reports, an error that some find suspicious and others say is par for the course. ACORN's Chicago office and CSI have not been under investigation.

McCain was referring to comments Obama made at a town hall meeting in Albuquerque in August. But Obama did not say that "his object is a single payer system." He said it would "probably" be his first choice "if" he were starting with a clean slate, which he isn't. He said his object is to "build up the system we got." According to the Wall Street Journal, Obama said:
Obama (as quoted by the Wall Street Journal, Aug. 19): If I were designing a system from scratch, I would probably go ahead with a single-payer system. ... [M]y attitude is let’s build up the system we got, let’s make it more efficient, we may be over time — as we make the system more efficient and everybody’s covered — decide that there are other ways for us to provide care more effectively.Back in 2003, Obama was much more explicit. At an AFL-CIO forum, he said he was “a proponent of a single-payer health care program,” adding, “that’s what I’d like to see. And as all of you know, we may not get there immediately.”That was five years ago, however, and recently, Obama has said he’d favor single-payer only if “starting from scratch.” He told The New Yorker in May 2007: “If you're starting from scratch, then a single-payer system ... would probably make sense. But we've got all these legacy systems in place, and managing the transition ... would be difficult to pull off. So we may need a system that's not so disruptive.”Obama exaggerated a weakness in McCain's health care plan:
Obama: Now, under Sen. McCain's plan there is a strong risk that people would lose their employer-based health care. Experts see a risk that some would lose their employer-based care, but Obama’s reference to "people" makes it sound as though nearly everyone would. Two independent studies both found that McCain’s plan would lead to a net decline in the number of people with health care through their jobs. (They said Obama’s would result in a net increase.) Both reports show, however, that there’s not a “strong risk” for all, or even a majority, of workers to lose their health care. Currently, 159 million Americans have health care through their jobs, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. A study by the Lewin Group shows a net decline in the number with job-provided benefits of 9.4 million people in 2010 for McCain's plan. The Tax Policy Center projected that the net decrease would be 7.7 million in 2010 and 20.3 million people by 2018.McCain and Obama both said much more that may have confused viewers. For a spin-free look at both of the candidates’ health care plans, see our recent article on this issue.

Obama falsely claimed all of McCain's ads had been "negative."
Obama: And 100 percent, John, of your ads – 100 percent of them have been negative.
McCain: It's not true.
Obama: It absolutely is true.
It was almost true, for one recent week. Obama was referring to a report by the Wisconsin Advertising Project at the University of Wisconsin that concluded that “nearly 100 percent of the McCain campaign’s advertisements were negative” during the week of Sept. 28 through Oct. 4. During the same week, 34 percent of the Obama campaign’s ads were negative. The Obama campaign was found to have outspent the McCain campaign in nearly all of the competitive states, in some cases by a margin of more than 3-to-1.
McCain’s ads, however, have not been deemed 100 percent negative in other weeks. In fact, in the week after the Republican National Convention, 77 percent of Obama’s ads were negative, according to the advertising project, while 56 percent of McCain’s were negative


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