Under the Dome

Claims Dept: Dole on 'Fibber Kay'

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole has a new ad attacking her Democratic rival, Kay Hagan.

What the ad says: The ad begins with images of a small dog barking and jumping at a fence. Narrator: "They call her 'Fibber Kay Hagan.' Fib after fib, she tries to turn us against Elizabeth Dole. But we know Elizabeth has been consistently voted one of the 10 most admired women in the world. Her clout works wonders for North Carolina. So bark away Fibber Kay. That dog don't hunt." Dole: "I'm Elizabeth Dole and I approve this message." Text on the screen says Dole "saved jobs," "saved bases," "saved farmers" and "helped sheriffs."

The background: The ad does not specify who "they" are who call Hagan "Fibber Kay."

The Dole campaign said they did not come up with the nickname, but they did not know who did.

"We're not sure who coined it, but we hear people call Kay Hagan 'Fibber Kay' on the campaign trail and we hear it frequently," said spokesman Hogan Gidley.

A search of North Carolina newspapers, blogs and Web sites did not return any references to "Fibber Kay" from before the ad began airing, and nearly all written since were about the ad itself.

The ad does not name any of the supposed "fibs" that Hagan has made.

MOST ADMIRED: Every year since 1948, the Gallup organization has surveyed a random group of Americans on the men and women in the world they most admire.

As secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation under President Reagan, Dole first made the top 10 in 1987, returning three years later as secretary of the Labor department.

Though she received votes in other years, she returned to the top 10 as the wife of presidential candidate Bob Dole and president of the American Red Cross. Between 1996 and 2003, she was ranked between third and tenth place.

She also landed in ninth place in 2005, but she has not been on the list in the last two years.

She was in the top 10 a total of 11 times — the same number as the poet Maya Angelou and news anchor Barbara Walters.

JOBS AND BASES: The U.S. Department of Defense announced a round of base closings and other changes in 2005 as part of a regular program begun at the end of the Cold War. The multi-year process is designed to be insulated from political pressure.

Some North Carolina leaders had feared the loss of thousands of jobs — something that never materialized. A number of politicians, including Dole and Democratic Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue, have claimed credit for North Carolina's relative success, but there is no way to quantify how much each helped.

FARMERS: In 2004, Congress and President Bush approved a buyout of the Depression-era system of price supports — or quotas — for tobacco leaf. Cigarette companies financed the buyout, passing on the costs to consumers.

The buyout is designed to put $9.6 billion into the pockets of quota owners and growers over 10 years. Some farmers have used the money to reinvest in the crop, while others chose to change crops or retire.

Dole supported the buyout during her 2002 campaign and was a vocal advocate in Congress, along with other senators from tobacco-growing states.

SHERIFFS: Since 1996, the federal government has offered a test program for sheriff's deputies to investigate illegal immigration.

Though immigration enforcement is typically handled by the federal government, the goal of the 287(g) program is to start deportation proceedings on illegal immigrants who are arrested for non-immigration related crimes.

In North Carolina, a handful of sheriffs' offices, including Mecklenburg and Wake counties, have signed up for the program, which Dole has promoted.

The federal government pays for the cost of training deputies in immigration enforcement and grants sheriffs' offices access to immigration records.

Is the ad accurate? There is no way to verify the "Fibber Kay" nickname or who coined it and no evidence it has been used. Dole has been consistently ranked among the most admired women in the world. Though the ad's claims are vague, Dole did help farmers and sheriffs in Congress, but there is no way to quantify her role in saving the state's military bases.

— Ryan Teague Beckwith and David Ingram


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Re: Claims Dept: Dole on 'Fibber Kay'

"Fibber"? Really, who says that? Liddy herself must have come up with this one. After that swell sock-hop at the malt shop...

Re: Claims Dept: Dole on 'Fibber Kay'

Liddy is desperate if she is resorting to childish name calling like "Fibber Kay." Do adults really talk and behave this way? why is it that Republicans resort to negative attack ads so quickly - is it lack of ideas? Lack of imagination? The ad says far more about the lack of ideas and principles of Liddy Dole than it does about Kay Hagan.

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