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The following is a fact-check from the 5/23 episode of Meet the Press.


1) The US has an annual deficit of $2 trillion – HALF TRUE

2) The interest to that debt is $383 billion – TRUE

DR. PAUL: We have an annual deficit of nearly $2 trillion. Interest alone on the debt is $383 billion.

1) According to the Treasury Department, the national debt for fiscal year 2009 was $1.786 trillion. Mr. Paul said that it was “nearly $2 trillion.” Our conclusion hinges on our understanding of “nearly.” It would be reasonable to assume that if you spent $1.78 on something, you could probably refer to the amount spent as “nearly $2.00” When the difference is 22 cents, that does not seem like a big deal, but when the difference is hundreds of billions of dollars, we believe it is misleading to classify $1.786 trillion as nearly $2 trillion. Because of this, we rate the first part of Mr. Paul’s statement HALF TRUE.

Incidentally, if you wanted to look at the total deficit for the length of one year specifically prior to May 22, 2010 when Mr. Paul made this statement, the national debt was $1.686 trillion. (5/21/09-5/22/10)

2) Also according to the Treasury Department, the net interest on the outstanding debt of fiscal year 2009 was indeed $383 billion. Because of this, we rate the second part of Mr. Paul’s statement TRUE.

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The following is a fact-check of the May 23, 2010 episode of Meet the Press:

SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R-TX) | Rand Paul is leading Jack Conway by 25 points in the KY Senate race – TRUE

SEN. CORNYN: But the fact of the matter is Rand Paul’s leading his opponent in the, in the general election by 25 points.

Sen. John Cornyn got his number from a poll by Rasmussen Reports conducted on May 20, 2010. The Rasmussen poll predicted that Rand Paul stands at 59% and that John Conway sits at 34%, which is a 25 point lead in Paul’s favor. But there are two other polls that predict differently. A Daily Kos poll, conducted on May 10, 2010, predicted that Paul is 12 points ahead of Conway. Public Policy Polling predicted Paul is only 1 point ahead of Conway and this poll was conducted on May 1, 2010. Because he cited an existing and recent poll, we rate Sen. Cornyn’s statement TRUE.

This fact-check took a combined 1.5 hours.