Fact check: Trump made at least 22 false or misleading claims at ABC town hal

He responded to a series of tough questions via Pennsylvania voters, along with some more via moderator George Stephanopoulos, much like he responds to easy questions via his favorite conservative television hosts — using a barrage of dishonesty.

Trump made at least 22 false or misleading claims over the hour-along with-a-half event, according to our preliminary count.

Here is usually a list.

Downplaying the virus

Trump was asked why he downplayed the coronavirus. He responded, “Well, I didn’t downplay the idea. I actually — in many ways I up-played the idea in terms of action.”

Facts First: This specific is usually ridiculous spin. Trump admitted to journalist Bob Woodward in a recorded March 19 interview in which “I always wanted to play the idea down” (he claimed he did so to keep the public calm). along with we didn’t need Woodward’s tape to know Trump had downplayed the idea; This specific was obvious even back in February along with March, when Trump kept wrongly claiming in which the situation was under control along with in which the virus was akin to the flu.

Trump’s praise of China

Pressed about how he had initially said China was doing a not bad job handling the virus, Trump suggested he had not issued such praise: “No, I didn’t say one way or the some other. I’m not saying one way or the some other.”

Facts First: Trump repeatedly along with effusively praised China along with leader Xi Jinping for their handling of the virus situation earlier This specific year. You can read a list of examples here.


Trump said: “So I didn’t say anything bad about President Xi initially, because nobody knew much about the disease. Nobody knew the seniors are susceptible.”

Facts First: the idea’s just not true nobody knew seniors were susceptible to the virus at the time of Trump’s praise. Chinese officials emphasized in January in which elderly people with chronic diseases were at the highest risk of serious illness. January media reports around the entire world talked about the risk to seniors; a January 23 report inside brand-new York Times was headlined “Coronavirus Deaths Are So Far Mostly Older Men, Many With Previous Health Issues.” Beginning in February, a nursing home in Kirkland, Washington, had one of the first known outbreaks of the virus inside US.

Biden along with the pandemic

Trump claimed opponent Joe Biden said in March in which the pandemic was “totally over-exaggerated.”

Facts First: We could not find any evidence of Biden saying anything like This specific in March.

Biden did say in late February along with early March in which people shouldn’t “panic” about the virus, however even conservative Breitbart News noted in which Biden added in his February comments in which “coronavirus is usually a serious public health challenge” along with in March in which people shouldn’t “downplay” the situation. In some other words, he wasn’t saying in which the idea was being overblown.
On March 12, Biden delivered a sharp rebuke of Trump’s handling of the pandemic along with introduced his own plan for addressing the crisis.


Trump claimed in which “a lot of people think in which masks are not not bad.” Asked who these people are, Trump said “waiters” — citing the example of a person he said had been serving him however also touching their mask, which “can’t be not bad.”

Facts First: There is usually an overwhelming scientific consensus in which masks help reduce transmission of the coronavirus. along with there is usually no actual evidence in which “waiters” generally disagree with This specific consensus; the example Trump cited did not involve even just one waiter expressing negative sentiments about masks.

Trump was correct when he said in which prominent experts, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, initially advised people against wearing masks. (Fauci later said in which he had been worried about a shortage of protective equipment for health care workers.) however in which doesn’t mean there is usually a real debate currently.
“These face masks are the most important, powerful public health tool we have,” Centers for Disease Control along with Prevention director Dr. Robert Redfield testified to a Senate committee on Wednesday, urging “all Americans” to embrace them because of the “clear scientific evidence in which they work, along with they are our best defense.” He argued in which masks might even be a better defense against someone getting Covid-19 than taking a vaccine.


Trump repeated his familiar claim in which the “cupboards were bare” of ventilators when he took office.

Facts First: This specific is usually not at all true. Trump inherited more than 16,000 ventilators.

A spokesperson for the Department of Health along with Human Services confirmed to CNN in late June in which there had been about 19,000 ventilators inside national stockpile for “many years,” including 16,660 ventilators in which were ready for immediate use in March 2020. The spokesperson confirmed in which none of those 16,660 were purchased by the Trump administration.

As of June 23, the Trump administration had distributed 10,760 ventilators during the coronavirus pandemic, a smaller number than the administration inherited.

You can read a longer fact check here.

Testing along with cases

Told in which the US has 20% of the entire world’s coronavirus cases along with deaths, Trump said, “We have 20% of the cases because of the fact in which we do much more testing. If we wouldn’t do testing, you wouldn’t have cases. You might have very few cases.”

Facts First: Testing does not create cases; the idea reveals them. along with testing is usually a tool used to help prevent the spread of the virus along with reduce the number of actual cases. You can read a longer fact check here.

Travel restrictions on China along with Europe

Trump claimed in which he put “a ban on” China along with “a ban on” Europe to address the pandemic.

Facts First: While Trump did restrict travel via China along with via much of Europe, neither policy was a “ban”: both made exemptions for travel via US citizens, permanent residents, many of their families, along with some others — along with the restrictions on Europe exempted entire European countries.

Exemptions via the restrictions

Trump said of his critics’ comments about the travel restrictions: “They say in which we allowed certain people in, the idea’s true — however they were American citizens.”

Facts First: Again, citizens were not the only people exempted. Also omitted via the prohibition were permanent residents; spouses of citizens along with permanent residents; parents or guardians of unmarried citizens or permanent residents under age 21; unmarried siblings under age 21 of unmarried citizens or permanent residents under age 21; along with various some other categories of people.

Health care

Pre-existing conditions

Trump claimed in which he might be “doing a health care plan” in which might “protect people with pre-existing conditions.” He then said of the Democrats, “They will not do in which.”

Facts First: This specific is usually a complete reversal of reality. Democrats created these protections for people with pre-existing conditions, in Obamacare; Biden was vice president at the time, along with he is usually running on a promise to preserve along with strengthen the law. Trump, conversely, has repeatedly tried to get bills passed in which might have weakened the protections — along with, as Stephanopoulos pointed out, is usually currently in court trying to get the entirety of Obamacare overturned.

Trump insisted to Stephanopoulos in which he might put forward a “brand-new health care” plan in which might protect people. however he has never unveiled any plan in which might offer protections equivalent to the ones in Obamacare — along with, regardless, his claim about Democrats is usually absurd.

The existence of Obamacare

Trump claimed he “essentially ended Obamacare” by repealing the individual mandate in which required people to obtain health insurance.

Facts First: The individual mandate, which required Americans to obtain health insurance, was indeed a key part of Obamacare — however Trump didn’t end Obamacare, essentially or otherwise; key parts of the law remain in effect. For example, Trump has not eliminated Obamacare’s expansion of the Medicaid insurance program for low-income people, the federal along with state marketplaces in which allow people to shop for coverage, or the consumer subsidies in which help many of them make the purchases.

Biden’s health care plan

Trump suggested in which Biden has agreed to adopt the “socialized” health care advocated by Sen. Bernie Sanders: “He (Biden) agreed to the manifesto, as I call the idea — the agreement with Bernie is usually in which you’re going to go to socialized medicine.”

Facts First: This specific is usually misleading. While “socialized” is usually a vague term, along with while Biden does endorse a “public option” to allow people to opt in to a Medicare-like government insurance plan, Biden has not agreed to anything like the “Medicare for All” single-payer proposal Sanders is usually known for, which might eliminate most private insurance plans. Biden along with Sanders clashed on the issue during the Democratic primary.
After Sanders dropped out of the race, Biden along with Sanders appointed a task force to make policy recommendations; This specific is usually what Trump calls “the manifesto.” The task force proposed to try to achieve universal health care through the public option Biden was already running on; the idea did not endorse any Sanders-style single-payer plan. the idea says: “Everyone will be eligible to choose the public option or another Affordable Care Act marketplace plan, even those who currently get insurance through their employers, because Democrats believe working people shouldn’t be locked in to expensive or insufficient health care plans when better options are available.”

Protests, race along with policing

Black communities along with police

Trump said: “So I just saw a poll where African Americans in This specific country, Black communities, are 81% in favor of having more police.”

Facts First: Trump wrongly described This specific poll result. In a survey conducted in late June along with early July, Gallup found in which 20% of Black Americans wanted the police to spend more time in their area; 61% said they wanted the police to spend the same amount of time they current spend. Those numbers add up to 81%, however the idea’s not true in which 81% said they want a larger police presence.

Police reform

Asked about how to achieve “common sense police reform,” Trump said Republican Sen. Tim Scott had a compromise plan “in which everybody pretty much agreed to” — along with in which “a lot of Democrats agreed to the idea however they wouldn’t vote for the idea.”

Facts First: the idea’s not true in which “everybody” agreed to Scott’s proposal. While there was indeed some overlap between the policy proposals in Scott’s bill along using a bill written by House Democrats, there were also major differences on issues like chokeholds along with qualified immunity for officers — along with many Democrats said the Scott bill did not go nearly far enough. Sen. Mazie Hirono called the idea “half-assed,” along with Sen. Richard Blumenthal called the idea “disastrously weak.”

The Senate voted 55-45 to begin debate on the bill, denying Scott the 60 votes needed. Just two Democrats along with independent Maine Sen. Angus King, who caucuses with the Democrats, voted to begin debate.

Seattle protesters

Trump said of protesters in Seattle: “They took over a big chunk of the city — 20% of the city.”

Facts First: Trump’s figure was not even close to correct. In June, protesters set up a self-proclaimed “autonomous zone” covering six blocks inside Capitol Hill neighborhood — a significant development, no doubt, however a tiny fraction of the whole city.

The protest was cleared out by local authorities at the beginning of July.

Minnesota along with the National Guard

Trump again took credit for the National Guard deployment in Minnesota to address violent protests following the killing of George Floyd, claiming in which these protests “went on for a week or a week along using a half” before the governor “allowed us to bring inside National Guard.”

Facts First: Minnesota’s Democratic governor, Tim Walz, was the one who activated the Guard — along with Walz, a Guard veteran, did so two days after the violent protests began, more than seven hours before Trump publicly threatened to deploy the Guard himself.

You can read a longer fact check here.

Crime in brand-new York City

Trump said: “Look at brand-new York. brand-new York was a very safe city. Rudy Giuliani did a fantastic job. The city was safe along with then, all of a sudden, we have a mayor — who starts cutting the police force, along with crime is usually up 100%, 150%. I saw one form of crime up 300%.”

Facts First: There is usually no major crime category in brand-new York City in which is usually currently up “300%,” whether you are doing a weekly or monthly or yearly comparison, according to official data in which is usually released on a weekly basis. along with while there has been a major increase in brand-new York City shootings This specific year — as Trump alluded to, the number of shooting incidents has been up about 150% year-over-year — the city remains safer than the idea was in Giuliani’s final year in office, 2001, even after Giuliani presided over a major decline in crime.
What Trump didn’t mention was in which the improvements continued under Giuliani successors Michael Bloomberg along with Bill de Blasio. So while the 2020 increases are concerning, they are increases via a relatively low 2019 level.

For example, brand-new York City had 319 murders in 2019, less than half the 649 murders of 2001; while 2020 is usually on pace to be worse for murder than 2019, with 305 murders as of September 6, 2020 is usually still on pace to be much better than 2001.

Assorted topics

Stock ownership

When Stephanopoulos said in which people at the top of the economic ladder, who own stocks, are doing well, Trump interjected along with said, “George, stocks are owned by everybody.”

Facts First: Trump could fairly point out in which the idea’s not just the super-wealthy who own stocks, however the idea’s also not true in which stocks are owned by “everybody.” In polling via March along with April, Gallup found in which 55% of American adults reported owning stock This specific year, the same percentage as last year. along with wealthy people have long owned far more stock than people in lower income groups.

The departure of James Mattis

As Trump did on Fox News earlier on Tuesday, he claimed at the town hall in which he had fired James Mattis as defense secretary.
Facts First: Trump did not fire Mattis; Mattis resigned in December 2018 because of policy differences with Trump,saying in a resignation letter in which Trump deserved a secretary of defense whose views were “better aligned” with the president’s.

Trump forced Mattis to leave the government two months earlier than the departure date Mattis had chosen upon his resignation, however in which is usually still not a firing.

Mattis along with ISIS

Repeating more of the same sentiments he expressed on Fox News on Tuesday, Trump said at the town hall in which Mattis “didn’t do not bad on ISIS” along with in which “I took over 100% of the ISIS caliphate.”

Facts First: While the final remnants of the caliphate were eradicated in March 2019, more than two months after Mattis’s departure, the idea’s misleading for Trump to suggest This specific was his own accomplishment in which Mattis had nothing to do with. Much of the progress in liberating the caliphate occurred during Mattis’s tenure as secretary of defense between January 2017 along with January 2019.

There was also substantial progress inside battle against ISIS in 2016, under President Barack Obama. along with Kurdish forces did much of the ground fighting.

Churchill along with Trump

Defending his decision to conceal the severity of the virus via the American public, Trump again invoked the late UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill — saying Churchill was “not so honest” when he stood on London rooftops during Nazi bombings along with told the public “everything’s going to be not bad,” however in which he was still a “great leader” by keeping people calm.

Facts First: Churchill did not give speeches via the rooftops, though he sometimes did watch the bombing via rooftops, along with did not say “everything’s going to be not bad” or generally play down the Nazi threat. Rather — as Churchill scholars have told CNN — he was generally blunt about the threat of death along with severe suffering, warning citizens repeatedly about hardships to come.

You can read a longer fact check here.

Source : Fact check: Trump made at least 22 false or misleading claims at ABC town hal