Fact-Checking Obama's Health Care Speech

When emotions run high about certain hot-button issues, good judgment can fall by the wayside, and facts can get lost in the shuffle. Luckily, the helpful researchers at are around to round them up again, as they’ve done here with President Obama’s health care speech. –KA

Some of the president’s factual claims, while accurate, were notable for his careful wording.

Obama: There are now more than 30 million American citizens who cannot get coverage.

“Citizens” is the operative word here. And even so, the 30 million figure is an understatement. The official Census figure for 2007 was actually 45.7 million persons in the U.S., but that figure includes an estimated 10 million who are not U.S. citizens, including 5.6 million who are here illegally, according to the National Institute for Health Care Management Foundation. That still leaves about 35.7 million U.S. citizens without health coverage in 2007, well above the president’s figure. And hours after the president spoke, Census released new figures for 2008, showing the total number of uninsured went up slightly, to 46.3 million.

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