PolitiFact Bungles ‘Mostly False’ Claim on Winsome Sears and CRT, Refuses to Budge

On January 24, PolitiFact wrote a “fact check” throwing a “Mostly False” rating at Virginia Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears for an TV interview with Fox News on Martin Luther King Day asserting “When it comes to CRT, it is definitely being taught in some form or fashion. We know that last year, the Loudoun County school board spent about 300,000 plus dollars, that’s real money, that’s going to jail money, to bring CRT in some form or fashion to the school system.”

PolitiFact’s Warren Fiske first wrote this (as John Sexton reported for Hot Air): 

We asked Earle-Sears’ office three times for the source of her claim about Loudoun’s $300,000 investment in critical race theory and did not get a reply. It seems apparent, however, that she greatly overstated the $34,167 cost of seminars about critical race theory and equity training the Loudoun school system held for top officials in late spring, 2020…

She appears to have exaggerated the seminar’s cost.

Spokesman for the school said that the county had not used any money beyond $34,167 to pay for CRT seminars. Loudoun superintendent denies that theory is taught.

We rate Earle-Sears’ statement Most False

The next day, Chrissy Clark of the Daily Caller tweeted out a document which showed Loudoun County had indeed shelled out the six figures to the “Equity Collaborative.”  

PolitiFact was then emailed two articles by the Sears staff: Marc Thiessen’s Washington Post column, and an article about Washington Free Beacon. Fiske and PolitiFact could have found this with their own Googling, but  leaped to liberal guesswork on the “greatly overstated the cost” part of their “fact check.” 

One factual quibble was worthy: Loudoun Country spend $300,000-plus dollars for “equity training” over several years, not in 2020. This is another question. Fiske must be aware that Loudoun County officials falsely claimed they spent $34,167 on seminars. 

PolitiFact attempted to argue the Equity Collaborative was brought in for a much broader effort about the discipline policy and overall treatment of minority students, and then altered its conclusion: 

Loudoun’s consultants assisted in the development of policies to make schools more welcoming and inclusive for minorities. This work was about treating students fairly, and not teaching them what to do in class. Earle-Sears’ statement confuses the matter and we rate it Mostly False.

The question is: Who’s confusing it? This conclusion is still false, because right in the Equity Collaborative’s recommendations for Loudoun is this item: 

3. Facilitate additional professional learning opportunities for LCPS educators about implicit bias/color consciousness. Establish a further culturally-responsive framework to inform curricular and instructional efforts across the division.

In “curricular” and instructional activities, they were developing systemic racism education. Sears on Fox News stated that it was exactly the same as Sears on Fox News. The Left has been “playing semantics” in their efforts to impose equitable training on students, teachers, and parents. PolitiFact’s attempts to interview Sears on Fox News are rated as “Mostly False” by us! 

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