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The Voter’s Speakeasy featuring unbiased reporting and insight into life at Vote Smart from our staff, interns, and volunteers.

How to Fact-Check with

2017 October 31 - Alejandro Ortiz


It’s time to stop looking at our time as the era of “fake news” and start looking at it as the era of “fact-checking.” It can be difficult to distinguish fact from fiction in the digital age, so it is our responsibility to not always take headlines and viral memes at face value. We at Vote Smart want to help arm you with the tools and resources to do this.

Misinformation online is abundant. Oxford University found that in 2016 “Twitter users got more misinformation, polarizing and conspiratorial content than professionally produced news.” That means that more people read manipulation and falsehoods than facts.

Sensationalized, misleading, or simply false headlines flooded our news feeds in 2016 and 2017, and Vote Smart is here to help you weed out the garbage. By browsing our database of public statements, key votes, and more, you can see if a published claim is truth or trash. We also provide you with the ability to fact-check politicians to see if they have followed up their words with action.

Please help us if you can! Click here to donate.

Fact-check headlines or claims about legislation

As an example, if you read a headline that states “This president’s administration has not appropriated any funding for renewable energy,” then finding appropriations legislation could help you verify this. To do this, you can filter through our legislation page using the issue of “Government Budget and Spending” to read through all appropriations bills this year. You could add a keyword search for ...

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