12/19/16

Trump: Liar-in-Chief?

The Whoppers of 2016

Our Donald clearly leads the pack of inveterate liars. Oh, Hillary's whoppers are further down; just scroll past Our Donald's fabrications, mental meanderings, and general obfuscations. The thing with that, though, is this:Hillary's lies, fibs, and fabrications no longer matter. What she said, what she did, what she would do ... any of that ... no longer matter in any way regarding the presidency. You might as well lose sleep over whether or not Richard Nixon was a crook. Stick a fork in her. She's done.

Our Donald, however, clearly exceeds all expectations with his ability to lie and distort. Our Donald is going to be our fearless leader, setting the standard for Truth, Justice, and the American Way ... or what's left of it.So his whoppers do matter.

Trump’s Whoppers

On the campaign trail, Trump relentlessly portrayed the U.S. as a once-proud nation in decline, and held himself out to voters as the man who could make it great again. That’s his opinion, of course, and he is entitled to it.
We took issue, though, with how he distorted the facts on employment, crime, immigration, taxes, refugees, terrorism and other topics, to make his case.
Even after the election, Trump continued to grossly misrepresent the facts on unemployment, claiming that “96 million people out there … gave up looking for jobs” and that they “want to work,” when, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 5.5 million of them “want to work.” His 96 million figure, for example, includes 18.2 million people age 75 and older who were not in the workforce in November, BLS says.In February, Trump said he “heard” the unemployment rate was really 42 percent, and vowed to be “the greatest jobs president that God ever created.” At the time, the official unemployment rate was 4.9 percent, and it has since dropped to 4.6 percent — the lowest in more than nine years. Trump’s inflated figure includes millions of people 16 years and older who are not in the labor force and don’t want to work — including retirees, high school and college students, and stay-at-home parents.
Similarly, Trump took up the mantle as the “law and order candidate,” claiming in October that the murder rate in the U.S. last year was the “highest it’s been in 45 years,” and lamenting that “the press never talks about it.” Wrong and wrong.
The murder rate in 2015 was 4.9 per 100,000 inhabitants — far lower than it was 45 years ago at 7.9 per 100,000 inhabitants in 1970, according to FBI data. It peaked at 10.2 per 100,000 inhabitants in 1980 — which was 35 years ago. In fact, the murder rate was lower in 2015 than it had been at any time between 1965 and 2009.
As for his claim that the “the press never talks about it,” Trump was actually distorting news reported by the New York Times. In September, the paper reported that the 2015 murder rate was 10.8 percent higher than it was in 2014 — the highest one-year increase “in nearly half a century.” That’s not the same as saying the murder rate is the “highest it’s been in 45 years,” as Trump claimed.
There are many more examples of false and misleading claims by Trump, and readers can see them all by clicking here. For now, we review some of his whoppers:
  • Trump claimed that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens “was left helpless to die as [then Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton soundly slept in her bed” during the attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi. That’s false, and Trump later admitted he had no evidence for it.
  • Trump claimed that Clinton was “raising everybody’s taxes massively,” a regular talking point at his rallies. Not so. Almost all of the tax increases under her plan would fall on the top 10 percent of taxpayers, according to analyses by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center and the pro-business Tax Foundation. The hardest hit would be the top 0.1 percent of taxpayers, the TPC said.
  • Trump claimed in 2015 that he opposed the Iraq War before it started and had “25 different stories” to prove it. He didn’t provide any evidence. In 2016, Trump provided two sources: a pre-war TV interview with Neil Cavuto, which didn’t support his claim, and unrecorded, off-the-air conversations with Trump supporter Sean Hannity.
  • Trump’s charge about Cruz’s father was based on the National Enquirer story “Ted Cruz Father Linked to JFK Assassination!” The article was based on a photo of a man who looked like Rafael Cruz, but no facial recognition technology was used to confirm it was Cruz. Even the paper’s primary source described Trump’s statement as “stupid.”
  • At a meeting with the National Border Patrol Council, Trump claimed that the Obama administration is “letting people pour into the country so they can go and vote.” But only citizens can vote, and immigrants must reside in the U.S. legally for several years before they can even apply for citizenship.
  • Trump said the terrorist group ISIS “is making millions and millions of dollars a week selling Libya oil,” and that Iran is “taking over the oil” in Iraq. Experts told us at the time that there was no evidence for either claim.
  • Trump said that Trump University “had an ‘A’ rating from the Better Business Bureau,” and “many” of the instructors were “handpicked” by him. No instructors were handpicked by Trump, and his university had a “D-” rating when it stopped taking new students in 2010.
  • Trump repeatedly had said that “many people” saw — but failed to report — “bombs all over the floor” in the apartment of the San Bernardino couple who killed 14 people last year. A neighbor and a worker reportedly noticed what they described as unusual activity outside the apartment, but not any bombs in the home.
  • Trump said “many people” thought that Omar Mateen, who killed 49 people in Orlando in June, “was a whack job,” but they didn’t report him. In fact, Mateen’s co-workers in 2013 reported that he boasted of terrorist ties, and the FBI interviewed him. Also, a friend who attended the same mosque as Mateen reported him to the FBI in 2014.
  • After the Orlando shooting, Trump implied that Obama supported terrorists, and tweeted out a link to a Breitbart story to declare that he was “right.” The story was based on a misreading of a 2012 intelligence memo, experts said. One described Trump’s claim as “an old conspiracy theory … that has no place in our public discourse.”
  • Trump finally acknowledged that Obama was “born in the United States, period.” But he followed that up with two falsehoods: “Hillary Clinton and her campaign of 2008 started the birther controversy. I finished it.” There’s no evidence the so-called birther movement originated with Clinton or her campaign. And the issue was “finished” long before Trump revived it in 2011.
  • During the campaign, Trump stated that “voter fraud is very, very common.” After it, he said he “won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.” Trump provided no credible evidence for either claim. One professor cited by Trump as a source said Trump’s claim about the popular vote was “not at all” possible.
  • Trump and his campaign manager declared that he had won in an electoral “landslide.” Although still unofficial, Trump’s share of electoral votes would rank him 46th out of 58 presidential campaign winners, dating to George Washington.