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The Document Sean Hannity Doesn’t Want You To Read

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Related: The Doctored Clip Sean Hannity Sean Hannity Doesn’t Want You to Know About

Speaking at the Take Back America conference on June 3, American Progress CEO John Podesta said, “I think when you get so distant from the facts as — as guys like Limbaugh and Sean Hannity do, yeah, I think that tends to — it kind of — it tends to corrupt the dialogue.” Apparently he struck a nerve with Fox News’ Sean Hannity. Hannity challenged Podesta to “defend and explain one example where I — where I said something that was so false.” Since choosing just one of Hannity’s distortions is too difficult, here are fifteen examples:

All Hannity quotes from Hannity and Colmes unless otherwise noted.

HANNITY: ”You’re not listening, Susan. You’ve got to learn something. He had weapons of mass destruction. He promised to disclose them. And he didn’t do it. You would have let him go free; we decided to hold him accountable.” (4/13/04)

FACT: Hannity’s assertion comes more than six months after Bush Administration weapons inspector David Kay testified his inspection team had “not uncovered evidence that Iraq undertook significant post-1998 steps to actually build nuclear weapons or produce fissile material” and had not discovered any chemical or biological weapons. (Bush Administration Weapons Inspector David Kay, 10/2/03)

HANNITY: ”Colin Powell just had a great piece that he had in the paper today. He was there [in Iraq]. He said things couldn’t have been better.” (9/19/03)

FACT: ”Iraq has come very far, but serious problems remain, starting with security. American commanders and troops told me of the many threats they face–from leftover loyalists who want to return Iraq to the dark days of Saddam, from criminals who were set loose on Iraqi society when Saddam emptied the jails and, increasingly, from outside terrorists who have come to Iraq to open a new front in their campaign against the civilized world.” (Colin Powell, 9/19/03)

HANNITY: ”And in northern Iraq today, this very day, al Qaeda is operating camps there, and they are attacking the Kurds in the north, and this has been well-documented and well chronicled. Now, if you’re going to go after al Qaeda in every aspect, and obviously they have the support of Saddam, or we’re not.” (12/9/02)

FACT: David Kay was on the ground for months investigating the activities of Hussein’s regime. He concluded “But we simply did not find any evidence of extensive links with Al Qaeda, or for that matter any real links at all.” He called a speech where Cheney made the claim there was a link “evidence free.” (Boston Globe, 6/16/04)

HANNITY: ”[After 9-11], liberal Democrats at first showed little interest in the investigation of the roots of this massive intelligence failure…[Bush and his team] made it clear that determining the causes of America’s security failures and finding and remedying its weak points would be central to their mission.” (Let Freedom Ring, by Sean Hannity)

TRUTH: Bush Opposed the creation of a special commission to probe the causes of 9/11 for over a year. On 5/23/02 CBS News Reported “President Bush took a few minutes during his trip to Europe Thursday to voice his opposition to establishing a special commission to probe how the government dealt with terror warnings before Sept. 11.” Bush didn’t relent to pressure to create a commission, mostly from those Hannity would consider “liberal” until September 2002. (CBS News, 5/23/02)

HANNITY: ”First of all, this president — you know and I know and everybody knows — inherited a recession…it was by every definition a recession” (11/6/02)

HANNITY: ”Now here’s where we are. The inherited Clinton/Gore recession. That’s a fact.” (5/6/03)

HANNITY: ”The president inherited a recession.” (7/10/03)

HANNITY: ”He got us out of the Clinton-Gore recession.” (10/23/03)

HANNITY: ”They did inherit the recession. They did inherit the recession. We got out of the recession.” (12/12/03)

HANNITY: ”And this is the whole point behind this ad, because the president did inherit a recession.” (1/6/04)

HANNITY: ”Historically in every recovery, because the president rightly did inherit a recession. But historically, the lagging indicator always deals with employment.” (1/15/04)

HANNITY: ”Congressman Deutsch, maybe you forgot but I’ll be glad to remind you, the president did inherit that recession.” (1/20/04)

HANNITY: ”He did inherit a recession, and we’re out of the recession.” (2/2/04)

HANNITY: ”The president inherited a recession.” (2/23/04)

HANNITY: ”The president inherited a recession.” (3/3/04)

HANNITY: ”Well, you know, we’re going to show ads, as a matter of fact, in the next segment, Congressman. Thanks for promoting our next segment. What I like about them is everything I’ve been saying the president ought to do: is focusing in on his positions, on keeping the nation secure in very difficult times, what he’s been able to do to the economy after inheriting a very difficult recession, and of course, the economic impact of 9/11.” (3/3/04)

HANNITY: ”All right. So this is where I view the economic scenario as we head into this election. The president inherited a recession.” (3/16/04)

HANNITY: ”First of all, we’ve got to put it into perspective, is that the president inherited a recession.” (3/26/04)

HANNITY: ”Clearly, we’re out of the recession that President Bush inherited.” (4/2/04)

HANNITY: ”Stop me where I’m wrong. The president inherited a recession, the economic impact of 9/11 was tremendous on the economy, correct?” (4/6/04)

HANNITY: ”[President George W. Bush] did inherit a recession.” (5/3/04)

HANNITY: ”[W]e got [the weak U.S. economy] out of the Clinton-Gore recession.” (5/18/04)

HANNITY: ”We got out of the Clinton-Gore recession.” (5/27/04)

HANNITY: ”We got out of the Clinton-Gore recession.” (6/4/04)

FACT: ”The recession officially began in March of 2001 — two months after Bush was sworn in — according to the universally acknowledged arbiter of such things, the National Bureau of Economic Research. And the president, at other times, has said so himself.” (Washington Post, 7/1/03)

HANNITY: ”The Hispanic community got to know him in Texas. They went almost overwhelming for him. He more than quadrupled the Hispanic vote that he got in that state.” (9/16/03)

FACT: Exit polls varied in 1998 governors race, but under best scenario he increased his Hispanic vote from 24 to 49 percent – a doubling not a quadrupling. He lost Texas Hispanics to Gore in 2000, 54-43 percent. (Source: NCLRNHCSL)

HANNITY: ”Look, we’ve had these reports, very disturbing reports — and I have actually spoken to people that have confirmed a lot of the reports — about the trashing of the White House. Pornographic materials left in the printers. They cut the phone lines. Lewd and crude messages on phone machines. Stripping of anything that was not bolted down on Air Force One. $200,000 in furniture taken out.” (1/26/01)

TRUTH: According to statements from the General Services Administration that were reported on May 17, little if anything out of the ordinary occurred during the transition, and “the condition of the real property was consistent with what we would expect to encounter when tenants vacate office space after an extended occupancy.” (FAIR)

HANNITY: ”I never questioned anyone’s patriotism.” (9/18/03)

FACT:

HANNITY: (to attorney Stanley Cohen) “Is it you hate this president or that you hate America?” (4/30/03)

HANNITY: ”Governor, why wouldn’t anyone want to say the Pledge of Allegiance, unless they detested their own country or were ignorant of its greatness?” (6/12/03)

HANNITY: ”You could explain something about your magazine, [the Nation]. Lisa Featherstone writing about the hate America march, the [anti-war] march that took place over the weekend…” (1/22/03)

HANNITY: ”‘I hate America.’ This is the extreme left. There is a portion of the left — not everybody who’s left — that does hate this country and blame this country for the ills of the world…” (1/23/02)

HANNITY: (speaking to Sara Flounders co-director of the International Action Center) “You don’t like this country, do you? You don’t — you think this is an evil country. By your description of it right here, you think it’s a bad country.” (9/25/01)

HANNITY: ”It doesn’t say anywhere in the Constitution this idea of the separation of church and state.” (8/25/03)

FACT: ”Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” (1st Amendment)

“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” (Article VI)

HANNITY: ”You want to refer to some liberal activist judge…, that’s fine, but I’m going to go directly to the source. The author of the Bill of Rights [James Madison] hired the first chaplain in 1789, and I gotta’ tell ya’ somethin’, I think the author of the Bill of Rights knows more about the original intent–no offense to you and your liberal atheist activism–knows more about it than you do.” (9/4/02)

TRUTH: The first congressional chaplains weren’t hired by James Madison–they were appointed by a committee of the Senate and House in, respectively, April and May, 1789, before the First Amendment even existed. James Madison’s view: “Is the appointment of Chaplains to the two Houses of Congress consistent with the Constitution, and with the pure principle of religious freedom? In strictness the answer on both points must be in the negative.” (James Madison)

HANNITY: ”But the Alabama Constitution, which Chief Justice Roy Moore is sworn to uphold, clearly it says, as a matter of fact that the recognition of God is the foundation of that state’s Constitution.” (8/21/03)

FACT: While the preamble of the Alabama Constitution does reference “the Almighty,” section three provides: “That no religion shall be established by law; that no preference shall be given by law to any religious sect, society, denomination, or mode of worship; that no one shall be compelled by law to attend any place of worship; nor to pay any tithes, taxes, or other rate for building or repairing any place of worship, or for maintaining any minister or ministry; that no religious test shall be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under this state; and that the civil rights, privileges, and capacities of any citizen shall not be in any manner affected by his religious principles.” (Alabama Constitution, Section 3)

HANNITY: Betsy, they’re not going to lose it [public housing], because if you work less than 30 hours a week — if you work more than 30 hours a week, you don’t have to do it. If you’re between the ages of 18 and 62 and you’re not legally disabled and you have free housing — in other words…

BETSY MCCAUGHEY: No. Wait a second, Sean. Let me correct you. Most people in public housing are not receiving free housing. Many of them are paying almost market rates.

HANNITY: Betsy, that is so ridiculous and so false, it’s hardly even worth spending the time. (10/23/03)

FACT: Residents of public housing pay rent scaled to their household’s anticipated gross annual income, less deductions for dependents and disabilities. The basic formula for rent is 30 percent of this monthly adjusted income. There are exceptions for extremely low incomes, but the minimum rent is $25 per month. No one lives in public housing for free. (Department of Housing and Urban Development)

HANNITY: ”The Kerry campaign wants to cut taxes on people who make two hundred thousand dollars. She [Teresa Heinz Kerry] only paid 14.7 percent of her income in taxes, because their plan doesn’t go to dividends, only income. So they don’t want to tax themselves.” (5/12/04)

FACT: Kerry’s plan would “Restore the capital gains and dividend rates for families making over $200,000 on income earned above $200,000 to their levels under President Clinton. (Kerry Press Release, 4/7/04)

HANNITY: ”He’s [Kerry's] flip-flopped all over the place… on the issue of Iraq. All the munitions that we have built up, most of them wouldn’t be there.” (1/30/04)

HANNITY: ”But he wanted to cancel�??every major weapons system. Specific votes that he would have canceled the weapons systems we now use.” (2/26/04)

FACT: ”In 1991, Kerry opposed an amendment to impose an arbitrary 2 percent cut in the military budget. In 1992, he opposed an amendment to cut Pentagon intelligence programs by $1 billion. In 1994, he voted against a motion to cut $30.5 billion from the defense budget over the next five years and to redistribute the money to programs for education and the disabled. That same year, he opposed an amendment to postpone construction of a new aircraft carrier. In 1996, he opposed a motion to cut six F-18 jet fighters from the budget. In 1999, he voted against a motion to terminate the Trident II missile.” (Slate, 2/25/04)

HANNITY: ”If he (Kerry) had his way and the CIA would almost be nonexistent.” (1/30/04)

FACT: John Kerry has supported $200 billion in intelligence funding over the past seven years – a 50 percent increase since 1996.

Kerry votes supporting intelligence funding:

FY03 Intel Authorization $39.3-$41.3 Billion
[2002, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 9/25/02]

FY02 Intel Authorization $33 Billion
[2001, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 12/13/01]

FY01 Intel Authorization $29.5-$31.5 Billion
[2000, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 12/6/00]

FY00 Intel Authorization $29-$30 Billion
[1999, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 11/19/1999]

FY99 Intel Authorization $29.0 Billion
[1998, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 10/8/98]

FY98 Intel Authorization $26.7 Billion
[1997, Senate Roll Call Vote #109]

FY97 Intel Authorization $26.6 Billion
[1996, Unanimous Senate Voice Vote 9/25/96]

(Source: CDI)

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