Media Matters - Like O'Reilly, Hannity misrepresented Obama remark to falsely claim he made a "campaign promise" to allow "no earmarks" On the March 6 edition of his Fox News program, Sean Hannity falsely claimed that President Obama made a "campaign promise" to allow "no earmarks." As purported evidence, Hannity aired several clips of Obama referring to earmarks, including a January 6 clip of Obama stating his desire to "ban all earmarks" from the economic recovery package, which Hannity, like Fox News colleague Bill O'Reilly, misrepresented to claim Obama was breaking his word by signing the omnibus appropriations bill. After purporting to "go to the videotape" and "show the audience at home" Obama's "campaign promise" of "no earmarks," Hannity aired a number of clips from the 2008 presidential campaign in order to claim that Obama was breaking his promise of "no earmarks," when, in fact, in three of the clips, Obama was referring to reforming the earmark process, and in a fourth, he was asserting that an opponent was being hypocritical for taking earmarks and then advocating against them. In the fifth clip, which was actually taken from a January 6 media availability -- not during the presidential campaign as Hannity suggested -- Obama stated: "We are gonna ban all earmarks -- the process by which individual members insert pet projects without review." However, Obama was referring to his desire to "ban all earmarks" from his "recovery and reinvestment plan," which he specifically distinguished from "the overall budget process." During his January 6 media availability, Obama stated: OBAMA: But we're not going to be able to expect the American people to support this critical effort unless we take extraordinary steps to ensure that the investments are made wisely and managed well. And that's why my recovery and reinvestment plan will have -- will set a new higher standard of accountability, transparency, and oversight. We are going to ban all earmarks, the process by which individual members insert pet projects without review. We will create an economic recovery oversight board made up of key administration officials and independent advisers to identify problems early and make sure we're doing all that we can to solve it. We will put information about where money is being spent online so that the American people know exactly where their precious tax dollars are going and whether we are hitting our marks. But we're not going to be able to stop there. We're going to have to bring significant reform not just to our recovery and reinvestment plan, but to the overall budget process, to address both the deficit of dollars and the deficit of trust. We'll have to make tough choices, and we're going to have to break old habits. We're going to have to eliminate outmoded programs and make the ones that we do need work better.