"We fact-checked several claims by Romney and the other speakers.
Newt Gingrich said, 'It's striking how President (Jimmy) Carter and President Obama both took our nation down a path that in four years weakened America's confidence in itself and our hope for a better future.'
Callista Gingrich continued, 'Both weakened the respect for America abroad.'
We compared favorability ratings of the United States from the last year of George W. Bush’s presidency to the most recent figure under Obama. The U.S. on average has higher favorability ratings now, according to surveys. However, America’s favorability has eroded somewhat since Obama’s first year in office, though it’s still above the final levels of the Bush administration. We rated Callista Gingrich’s statement Mostly False."
"By 2050, nearly two-thirds of Texas public school students will be Hispanic and probably poor. But in the Laredo Independent School District, for one, that is already the case."
"But geography aside, Texas public schools may increasingly find more in common with the South Texas district. In 2011, the state reached two landmarks. For the first time, Hispanics became the majority of public school students. And to cope with a historic budget deficit, the Legislature did not finance enrollment growth in the state’s schools — something that had not happened since the modernization of the Texas public school system in 1949. Though the first turning point passed quietly and the second with much political strife, they both underscore the challenges ahead as a dramatic demographic shift occurs in public school classrooms statewide.
By 2050, the number of Texas public school students is expected to swell to nine million from roughly five million now, and nearly two-thirds will be Hispanic, according to Steve Murdock, a demographer and director of Rice University’s Hobby Center for the Study of Texas. The overall percentage of white students will drop by half to about 15 percent. Without an accompanying change in Hispanics’ current socioeconomic status, that also means Texas students will continue to grow poorer — and their education more expensive — in the next four decades, Dr. Murdock added. (Rice University is a corporate sponsor of The Texas Tribune.)
State population figures over the last decade show the shift is well under way in the public school system. Economically disadvantaged children in Texas classrooms make up 60 percent of all public school students, up from less than half in 2000. Students with limited English skills now make up 16 percent of them. Of about 979,000 children added to the state’s under-18 population from 2000 to 2010, 931,000 were Hispanic.
'When you look at children, there is no doubt. The future of Texas — the future of the United States — is tied to the minority population,' said Dr. Murdock, a former state demographer and director of the United States Census Bureau. 'It’s just mathematically true.'l
"In his very first television advertisement last year, Mitt Romney highlighted the nation’s dire unemployment crisis, its record number of home foreclosures and the rising national debt, and showed video of President Obama delivering this arresting remark: 'If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.'
There was one problem: the quotation was taken so wildly out of context that it turned Mr. Obama’s actual meaning upside-down. The truncated clip came from a speech Mr. Obama gave in 2008 talking about his opponent, Senator John McCain of Arizona. The full quotation? “Senator McCain’s campaign actually said, and I quote, ‘If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.’ ”
PolitiFact.com, the Pulitzer Prize-winning fact-checking Web site, rated the advertisement “Pants on Fire,” its most deceptive rating possible, but it achieved what the Romney campaign had hoped: people started talking about the sluggish economy and how Mr. Obama’s campaign promises had fallen short. And it set the tone for the campaign that followed, which has often seemed dismissive of fact-checkers.
“We’re not going let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers,” Neil Newhouse, the Romney campaign’s pollster, said this week during a breakfast discussion at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., that was sponsored by ABC News and Yahoo News. He said that fact-checkers brought their own sets of thoughts and beliefs to their work, and that the campaign stands behind its ads."