Reuters Debunks Politifact; Fiat Will Build Jeeps in China

On Sunday, Reuters reported Fiat and Chrysler, which Fiat owns, are on the verge of signing an agreement to produce Jeeps in China, and they may make the announcement as early as Monday at the Detroit Auto Show: 

Italian carmaker Fiat and its U.S. unit Chrysler are set to sign a new agreement with Guangzhou Automobile Group Co to produce the Jeep vehicle for the Chinese market, Il Corriere della Sera said on Sunday.

In an unsourced article, the Corriere said the head of Fiat and Chrysler Sergio Marchionne could announce the agreement at the Detroit auto show, which kicks off on Monday.

Under the agreement, off-road vehicles under the Jeep brand will be produced at GAC's Canton factory, the paper said.

This report debunks the supposedly neutral fact-checking organization Politifact's claim that Mitt Romney's campaign advertisement during the 2012 that alleged Obama sold Chrysler to Italians "who are going to build Jeeps in China" was 2012's "Lie of the Year."

Politifact announced that Mitt Romney’s “Jeep” ad was its "2012 Lie of the Year" even though the ad was factually true. 

Romney slightly misspoke on the stump about Fiat's intention to produce Jeeps in China, but reports about Fiat, which owns Chrysler, building Jeeps in China surfaced as early as 2010. And the campaign ad simply stated: 

Obama took GM and Chrysler into bankruptcy and sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China. Mitt Romney will fight for every American job.

Even liberal publications like Mother Jones and mainstream newspapers like the Washington Post conceded the advertisement was factually true or true on the merits. 

This is not the first time Politifact’s “lie of the year” has been completely debunked after the fact. 

In 2009, Politifact announced that former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin's claim about "death panels" in Obamacare was its "Lie of the Year." After Palin revealed what Rush Limbaugh said was a "hidden truth," the Obama administration removed the so-called "death panels" from its initial Obamacare bill. And three years later, former Obama adviser Steve Rattner, in a New York Times op-ed, said the country actually needed "death panels" to ration health care.

In 2010, Politifact determined that claims by conservatives that Obamacare would lead to a “government takeover” of healthcare was the “Lie of the Year.” After Obamacare was passed and upheld by the Supreme Court, the IRS issued a 160-page document explaining the Obamacare tax/surcharge and private businesses like Hobby Lobby have been threatened because they refuse to comply with the bill's birth control mandate. And there are even more provisions in the bill, some of which have still yet to be unearthed, that expand the scope of government involvement in the country's health care.   


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