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Not again: Palin “slashes” another children’s program…by increasing funding; Update: Washington Monthly retracts, what about the rest of the MSM?

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By Michelle Malkin  •  September 4, 2008 12:48 PM

Scroll down for updates…

The Kossified media strikes again.

In the wee hours of the morning yesterday, I told you about the Washington Post’s false accusation that Gov. Sarah Palin “slashed” funding for a teen pregnancy program, when in reality, there was “over a threefold increase from the government funds they received from all sources in 2006 (FY2006 ending 12/31/06).”

Many of you have contacted the WaPo ombudsperson about the lie. But she is apparently on vacation until next week. Keep after it — because the meme is spreading. The NYTimes has now recycled WaPo’s nonsense with this apoplectic headline: “Palin’s Budget Cuts Affect Teenage Mothers.”

And now, via Brian Faughnan, there’s this new smear using liberal math to decry Palin’s alleged “slashing” of special-needs funds. They’re so screamingly desperate:

I just watched CNN’s Soledad O’Brien sandbag former White House Communications Director Nicole Wallace by asking her how Sarah Palin can claim to be a defender of special needs children when she cut the budget for that Alaska office by 62 percent. Wallace wasn’t familiar with the charge — which isn’t surprising, since it’s only being made on DailyKos and another liberal site. (Tip for Ms. O’Brien: DailyKos is not a reliable news site.)

This charge is based on looking at the budget for Alaska’s Special Education Service Agency for 2007-2009. In fact, the December 2006 budget document that they cite would have been prepared by the outgoing administration — that of Republican Frank Murkowski, whom Palin defeated.

What’s gone unmentioned is that the Palin signed into law a dramatic reform of the state’s education financing system that equalizes aid to rural and urban districts, while significantly increasing funding for special needs students.

Keep it going, Palin-bashers. You’re doing a fantastic job:

Rasmussen Poll: 51 percent say reporters are trying to hurt Palin

***

From reader Kim:

There’s more to the story than an honest mistake by CBS.

In FY 07, before Palin worked on the budget, the state of Alaska had four distinct programs funded under it’s special education management budget: something called SESA, a psychiatric program, a school for the deaf, and the Alaska Challenge Youth Academy. In FY 08, the first Palin year, the first three programs – SESA, the psychiatric program, and the school for the deaf – were still in the special education management budget and their funding was approximately the same as it was in FY 07. But the Alaska Challenge Youth Program isn’t listed and it’s omission accounts for what appears to be a huge drop in funding for special education services.

I wondered why the program was dropped and googled the Alaska Challenge Youth Academy. Guess what? In FY 08 the academy was moved out of special education management and became it’s own program. And it’s funding was increased by about $2.8 million (to $8,234,000 in FY 08from $5,449,300 in FY07). Here’s a link to the program’s FY 08 budget http://gov.state.ak.us/omb/08_OMB/bu…D/comp2837.pdf

CBS, CNN and the other reporters could have discovered this had they simply read the 5, yes 5, page reports. It took me all of 30 second to discover this, and I’m as at home Mom with nothing but google to help me.

Have a great day !

Kim

And from blogger Parentalcation, who Googled for 45 seconds before discovering this from a Washington Monthly writer who spread the meme:

A commenter (Jim Syar) accused Sarah Palin of reducing the special education budget by 62%. That is false. The special education budget actually increased by nearly 12%, as explained below.
As Syar correctly notes, the Alaska 2007 budget for special education was $8,265,300. But that included $5,352,000 for the Alaska Challenge Youth Academy.
In the 2009 budgetary document to which Syar links, astute observers will note that there is no mention of the Alaska Challenge Youth Academy. Instead, you have to look elsewhere. And guess what: There is now a specific document providing $6,082,100 for the Alaska Challenge Youth Academy. (Link) So combined with the $3,156,000 that Syar notes, the total is $9,238,100. A nearly 12% INCREASE, not a 62% decrease.
Posted by: SB September 3, 2008 3:38 PM

The Washington Monthly has retracted the accusation and regrets the error.

What about the rest of the MSM continuing to spread the meme?

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