Sunday talk shows, part 2- Faulty arguments

Posted on October 14, 2012 by

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“Meet the Press” guests included Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed (pictured, home page). The Democrat said, Biden “clearly won the debate among independents.” He added that the vice president outpolled Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) by 51 to 30. “The fact of the matter is he dominated him.”

We don’t know where Reed got his numbers. Only the Reuters-Ipsos poll concluded Biden won, 42 percent to 35 percent – among registered voters, with a similar margin among independents. That margin is far less than what Reed said. Nearly a quarter of registered voters and about a third of independents were unsure who did a better job during the debate.

CNN’s survey results had it 48 to 44, Ryan ahead. CNBC was Ryan 56% vs. Biden 36% while the AP found Ryan 51% vs. Biden 43%.

An NBC poll of 435 uncommitted voters after the debate showed Paul Ryan winning with 63% to 31%. Ryan was declared the winner over Biden by 63 percent to 31 percent in a poll of 534 uncommitted voters conducted by NBC News after the debate.

So Reed’s numbers are faulty by a mile.

On “Face the Nation,” Bob Schieffer asked Rep. Darrell Issa (R-AZ) about House Republicans trying to cut a half billion dollars from embassy security over the past two years. After first avoiding the question, Issa was asked again. He said,

“Okay. What the Democrats are saying and Mister Cummings will say in a minute is that we quote, “Cut three hundred million.” The vote that reduced what the President had asked for, which would have been an increase was a hundred and forty-nine Democrats to a hundred and forty-seven Republicans, and quite frankly, it was, in fact, sufficient. We’ve been told that. You can’t always look to money when there is money sitting there. There’s 2.2 billion in discretionary reprogrammable money that wasn’t used. The fact is they are making a decision not to put security in because they don’t want the presence of security.

We don’t see what the vote was as relevant to the question. Issa was admitting that Republicans wanted to reduce spending.

However saying that Democrats didn’t want security is not backed up with any facts and we think it’s irresponsible .

Also on “Face the Nation,” Sen. Lindsay Graham (pictured, this page) claimed al Queda is still a major threat. “When something goes bad, they deny, they deceive, and they delay. And the truth is we’re not safer. Al Qaeda is alive. Bin Laden may be dead. Al Qaeda is alive and they’re counter-attacking throughout the entire region. And the truth is that the foreign policy choices of President Obama is allowing the region to come unraveled.

We see the statement as a gross exaggeration. The terrorist group is not “counter-attacking throughout the entire region.”

Host Schieffer pressed on. “Where did you get this information that led you to this conclusion? Did you talk to officials there? Did you talk to people in the CIA? Did you talk to people in the administration? How are you so convinced of– of what you have just stated?”

Senator Graham’s response: “The intelligence community on the ground in Libya has told Senator Corker and myself that within twenty-four hours, they communicated up to Washington that this was a terrorist attack.”

Graham went on but didn’t answer the question of whether Al Qaeda was on a rampage in the region, reinforcing that his first statement was hyperbole .