A local reader stopped in earlier this month to urge us to do more "fact checking," particularly where political allegations are concerned. This will be important, he contended, as we head into another election cycle in which the two main political parties can't seem to agree on the time of day.
He's right. We need to do all we can to make sure that we police what is said about and by those who are seeking elective office. And we're looking into some ways we can better fact-check everything from news releases, speeches and debates to letters to the editor.
In the meantime, I need to make it clear early on that we don't run political letters that make outrageous allegations or that use extremely incendiary verbiage. Below are a few excerpts from a letter we received last week. We won't be running it.
"Why has Congress abdicated their responsibility and sworn oath? Obama and his henchmen have repeatedly violated the constitution and have broken the law. Yet, no one in Congress does anything about it.
* He has produced a questionable, if not fraudulent birth certificate.
• He has bribed candidates in close elections to withdraw so that his candidate will win.
• He has bribed and armtwisted members of Congress to vote for ObamaCare against their better judgment and against the majority of Americans.
• He has manipulated advertisers to withdraw their ads on certain shows on Fox TV that are critical of him and his agenda.
• He has refused to enforce immigration laws.
It goes on an on.
We get the same type of letters about Republican candidates from Democrats.
Please. Be civil with your letters and provide a sources for your allegations. But we'd prefer that you stick to actual issues rather than making outrageous claims of illegalities and impropriety.