Share this article

print logo

Buffalo News partners with PolitiFact to fact-check political claims

The Truth-O-Meter has arrived in New York State.

The Buffalo News has partnered with – a Pulitzer Prize-winning fact-checking website run by the Tampa Bay Times – to launch PolitiFact New York.

Starting in a few weeks, PolitiFact New York will check the claims of elected officials and candidates across New York State – at all levels of government, from county commissioners to U.S. senators, from city council members to the governor. It will also check assertions by people and groups involved in political discourse, including political party leaders, activists, advocacy groups and political action committees.

“PolitiFact is a great feature,” said Buffalo News Editor Mike Connelly. “It is smart, thorough, independent and nonpartisan. In an era of wild claims across the political spectrum, it gives readers and voters a way to establish what is true – and what isn’t. We are excited that The Buffalo News will extend PolitiFact reporting to New York.”

“We’ve long wanted to bring PolitiFact to New York, and The Buffalo News will be a great partner,” said PolitiFact Executive Director Aaron Sharockman. “We look forward to working with them as they fact-check politicians in Albany and around the state.”

PolitiFact New York will augment the political and government coverage already provided by The News’ Albany bureau chief, Tom Precious.

Through PolitiFact New York, statements will be checked and then rated for their accuracy on the Truth-O-Meter.

PolitiFact’s six ratings range from True to Pants on Fire, the lowest rating for the most ridiculous falsehoods. Other ratings are Mostly True, Half True, Mostly False and False.

Fact-checkers will select the most newsworthy and significant statements in speeches, debates, news stories, press releases, campaign brochures, TV ads, Facebook postings and transcripts of TV and radio interviews.

Each fact-check will include an analysis of the claim, an explanation of the reasoning for the rating, and the sources used in the research.

The Times launched PolitiFact in 2007 to fact-check the presidential campaign, and then expanded it in 2009 to fact-check members of Congress and the White House.

PolitiFact won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting for its coverage of the 2008 election.

Since 2010, the Times has partnered with other news organizations to operate PolitiFact sites in various states. The News becomes PolitiFact’s 17th partner.

The Buffalo News and will also publish stories from PolitiFact and the other state partners.

Readers who hear or read something they think should be fact-checked can send an email to The News at