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Spin Check: Campaign Tweets
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.

TV ads. Radio ads. Mail. E-mail. Facebook. Twitter.

These are all ways political campaigns can reach voters. And each needs to be put through the Spin Check.

Let's start:

The Twitter handle @mark_miner, which just happens to be the Twitter account of Gov. Rick Perry's spokesman, posted earlier this week, saying:

"Looks like Bill White is running his campaign financially into the ground, much like he did the City of Houston."

Miner gets paid to send out Perry's message, but this tweet is FALSE. Miner was referring to the "cash on hand" amounts of the candidates reported earlier this week. White only has $2.7 million to Perry's $10 million. Part of the reason, according to the White campaign, is that White pre-bought campaign ads earlier this year. The ads cost money, but ordering early gets candidates a discounted rate. The "pre-buy" claim was confirmed by a source outside of the campaign that works with placing the ads.

The Twitter @bw4TAXES belongs to the Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, a group backing Perry's campaign. Its tweet said:

"Bill White wanting 'local control' of campus-carry means he's against it, but would prefer to mislead."

That's FALSE. The comment is talking about concealed handguns on college campuses.

It's been reported that White said he would let universities decide for themselves on the ban.

White's campaign uses a Twitter account called @parttimegov that's connected with www.parttimeperry.com. Its tweet says:

"Part-Time Governor Rick Perry spent $129,000 on security for a trip to Asia. Who is he, Katy Perry?"

Let's get one part out of the way. Rick Perry isn't Katy Perry, the pop star. But it is TRUE that Perry's trip to Asia did cost that amount. Perry defended the trip, saying he was there to promote Texas business.

And finally, there's someone using the Twitter handle @Gov_Rick_Perry. He/she frequently tweets from strip clubs and adult-themed stores. The tweets are obviously FALSE. The account isn't Perry's.

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