This week, Facebook censored several ads from right-leaning organizations over faulty and misleading fact checks. In one example, however, a fact checker went beyond labeling an ad misleading and suggested it contained “a prediction we can’t fact-check.”
The ad was from the American Principles Project PAC, which spent $4 million on a campaign featuring an ad alleging incumbent Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden would “destroy women’s sports” if they were elected. The ad centered around the so-called Equality Act, which among other things would allow biological men to compete in women’s sports. This, the ad said, would take away from female athletes “a fair shot at competition, at a scholarship, at a title, at victory.”
There is ample evidence for such concern, rooted in biology. Women simply can’t compete against men in sports, hence the need for separate women’s sports leagues. The Daily Wire has reported on numerous examples of biological men identifying as women excelling in women’s sports, such as the MMA fighter who fractured the skull of a biologically female opponent. Or the trans athlete who won the women’s world cycling competition for the second year in a row. Such disparities have led to a lawsuit in Connecticut filed by three high school female athletes who have lost opportunities due to trans women competing against them.
“Selina Soule, Alanna Smith, and Chelsea Mitchell, represented by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), were denied opportunities to compete at higher levels as boys took home the prizes,” The Daily Wire previously reported. “CIAC’s policy allowed two males to compete in girls’ athletic competitions beginning in the 2017 track season. Those boys have taken 15 women’s state championship titles (titles held in 2016 by nine different Connecticut girls) and have taken more than 85 opportunities to participate in higher level competitions from female track athletes in the 2017, 2018, and 2019 seasons alone.”
Yet left-wing fact-checker PolitiFact deemed the ad to be “missing context” and attempting to “mislead people.”
As Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Center wrote, the “‘missing context’ PolitiFact thought the ad should include was opinions in favor of the transgender push to destroy women’s sports.”
“Evidently, they think all conservative candidates should give their opponents airtime in ads they pay for within 60 days of the election. And it seems they thought the ad might ‘mislead people’ to vote for candidates who oppose the radical Equality Act,” Perkins continued.
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PolitiFact found no actual errors in the ad but admitted the ad’s “specific criticism is … a prediction we can’t fact-check.”
Every political ad should come with these labels if PolitiFact maintained this standard. Yet Facebook eventually banned the ad after first appending fact-check labels to it.
This isn’t the first ad to receive dubious fact-check warnings on Facebook this week. As The Daily Wire’s John Bickley reported, an ad explaining that Biden would raise taxes “on all income groups” received a “mostly false” rating from PolitiFact despite the outlet acknowledging the claim was, in fact, true.
Biden actually said, “If you elect me, your taxes are going to be raised, not cut,” and said his plan would affect “all income groups.”
PolitiFact acknowledged that “some tax experts estimate that Biden’s plan would mean higher taxes on average for all income groups,” yet still gave it a “mostly false” rating because the ad didn’t give enough “context” to Biden’s claim. The “context,” PolitiFact wanted was for the ad to say that Biden’s tax hikes would affect high-earners far more than others. Another tax-focused ad from America First — which published the Biden tax ad — was also censored.
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