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Spin Check: "Campaign Promises"
BY Omar Villafranca

What is Spin Check? As part of our coverage of Decision 2010 and the elections that affect Texas, we put political ads to the test.

First there was a rapping Gov. Rick Perry. Now the Bill White campaign has released another "Filmmakers for Bill White" Web ad featuring a frat-boy-ish Perry impostor in another Web ad called "Campaign Promises."

Let's spin check some of the ad.

The ad shows the wig-wearing actor saying,

"People say to me, 'Hey, Rick Perry, Texas is No. 1 in uninsured residents. I say, 'That's right. Texas is No. 1. And I'm going to keep it that way.'"

That's TRUE -- if you believe poll numbers.

The Bill White campaign didn't provide its sources for the ad. But a recent Gallup poll did have Texas at  No. 1 when it came to the uninsured. But the survey included less than 500 Texans, which is a very small sample size.

The ad also says:

"And I promise more new Texans. Texas has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the nation. That's more new Texans every year. I like that."

That's also TRUE.

A 2010 Guttmacher Institute study found that Texas had the fourth highest teen pregnancy rate of the 50 states in 2005.

The ad also says:

"I promise to keep Texas as a national leader. Now currently, we're leading the nation in high school dropouts. We're leaders. I think that's pretty cool."

That tongue-in-cheek statement is FALSE.

The dropout rate in Texas is high, and the numbers vary by organization. The Texas Education Agency puts the number at near 10 percent. But other organizations put it higher, closer to 30 percent.

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