Trump: Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
- Trump falsely claimed that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens “was left helpless to die as Hillary Clinton soundly slept in her bed.” Two emails from Clinton show that she was awake after it was learned that Stevens had died in the attack on the diplomatic facility in Benghazi.
- Trump misleadingly claimed that Clinton “accepted $58,000 in jewelry from the government of Brunei when she was secretary of state.” He didn’t mention that the gift was accepted on behalf of the United States and that it was transferred to the General Services Administration.
- Trump claimed without any evidence that Clinton “wants to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to settle Middle Eastern refugees in the United States.” The numbers don’t add up. The total refugee budget was $1.67 billion in fiscal 2016, so it is unlikely that Clinton could add “hundreds of billions” to the budget for refugee assistance.
- Trump overstated his case when he claimed the U.S. “trade deficit with China soared 40 percent during Hillary Clinton’s time as secretary of state.” It went up 17 percent, and we note that trade is under the purview of the Commerce Department, not the State Department.
- Trump blamed Clinton for the “disastrous strategy of announcing our departure from Iraq, handing large parts of the country over to ISIS and the ISIS killers.” The departure date was set by President George W. Bush. President Obama made the ultimate call to keep the scheduled departure date, not Clinton.
- Trump falsely claimed that Clinton would “end virtually all immigration enforcement and thus create totally open borders for the United States.” Clinton supported a Senate immigration bill that would create a path to citizenship for those in the country illegally, but it also would have included large investments in border security.
- Trump falsely claimed that the private server that Clinton used as secretary of state “was easily hacked by foreign governments.” Attempts were made to hack into Clinton’s server, but the identity of the hackers has not been determined and there has been no evidence to date that any of them were successful.
- Trump falsely claimed that “Hillary Clinton’s State Department approved the transfer of 20 percent of America’s uranium holdings to Russia.” The transfer was approved by a committee headed by the Treasury Department and made up of nine voting members throughout government, including one from the State Department.
- Trump claimed he was opposed to the Iraq war “before the war ever started.” There is no evidence of that.
- Trump wrongly said that “real wages for our workers have not been raised for 18 years.” Average weekly earnings for production and non-supervisory employees are up 10 percent, adjusted for inflation and seasonal factors, over that time period.
- Trump described the North American Free Trade Agreement as “Bill Clinton’s disastrous and totally disastrous NAFTA.” President Clinton signed the legislation to implement NAFTA, but the agreement itself was negotiated and signed by President George H. W. Bush.
Trump gave his speech in New York on June 22. In his speech, Trump described Clinton, the Democratic presumptive nominee, as “the most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency,” and laid out his case against her. But his rhetoric was not always supported by the facts.[i] For the full story go http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/22/politics/donald-trump-hillary-clinton-speech-fact-check/
In another closely related piece, Trump surrogate Jeffrey Lord said the unbelievable. In a strange exchange following Trump’s speech Lord told CNN’s Brian Stelter he doesn’t think fact-checkers — as in, people who verify whether politicians are using actual facts or just making stuff up — have a place in today’s political campaigns.
“I honestly don’t think this ‘fact-checking’ business … is anything more than one more out of touch, elitist media-type thing,” Lord said. “I don’t think people out here in America care. What they care about are what the candidates say.”
Lord’s comments came in response to a question from Stelter, who asked if Trump should “be more careful” in his speeches, given that fact-checking is critical of Trump “across the board.” The unbelievably inane remarks are especially stupefying in that Lord is a political commentator for CNN.[ii]
Evidently, he’s unfamiliar with the phrase “believe half of what you see and none of what you hear.”
[i] Trump attacks Clinton: CNN’s Reality Check Team inspects the claims, CNN’s Reality Check Team, June 22, 2016, http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/22/politics/donald-trump-hillary-clinton-speech-fact-check/
[ii] Facts. Who needs ‘em, right?, Trump Surrogate Dismisses Fact-Checking As ‘Elitist’ And ‘Out Of Touch’, Ryan Grenoble, The Huffington Post, June 27, 2016