FactCheck Trump’s longest rally to date: Investigate/Impeach Claims
Trump's longest rally to date was on Dec. 12, just as the House was getting ready to impeach him, and the WashPost has done a detailed fact check of it. So, what kind of BS is Trump feeding his rally attendees?
According to the WashPost, " From a grand total of 179 factual statements we identified, 67 percent were false, mostly false[,] or unsupported by evidence.
(Note: This line-by-line fact check is rather long, so I'm dividing it up into several separate posts and including only the most interesting items in each category. The entire long article can be found here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/01/07/anatomy-trump-rally-percent-claims-are-false-or-lacking-evidence/ )
IMPEACHMENT INQUIRIES AND RELATED ACTIVITIES
#1--"After three years of sinners and witch hunts, hoaxes, scams, tonight the House Democrats are trying to nullify the ballots of tens of millions of patriotic Americans.”
False. The Constitution allows the House to impeach the president for “high crimes and misdemeanors,” but that’s not the same as nullifying an election.
#2--“They gave money to foreigners to write a fake dossier, totally disproved, totally fake. The FBI then took that fake dossier and they used it in the FISA [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] court to get approval to spy on my campaign. ... and they lied about it.”
Mostly false. The Justice Department inspector general issued a report in late 2019 affirming the investigation into Trump’s campaign and Russia did not stem from the Steele dossier, but rather from a tip from a friendly foreign government.
[. . . ]
. . . the inspector general found the FBI did not act with political bias when it applied for the surveillance warrant on [Trump foreign policy adviser Carter ] Page.
#3--“Because Comey, who’s another beauty. Did I do a great job when I fired his ass? What a great job. Oh, no, they had bad plans. No, I did a great thing. That was like throwing a rock at a hornet’s nest. Did that place explode? And then, we learned about Lisa Page and her wonderful lover, Peter Strzok. . . .
Mostly false. The Justice Department inspector general found bias did not taint FBI leaders’ decisions in the investigation of Trump’s campaign and Russia.
#4--"They have nothing [referring to the impeachment evidence gathered by Democrats].”
False. This goes beyond the realm of opinion. Senior Trump administration officials, including the president’s former national security adviser, John Bolton, raised concerns about the administration’s dealings with Ukraine.
[. . .]
The testimony of senior officials was corroborated by text messages, emails, documents, Trump’s own public remarks and a rough transcript of his July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Whether the evidence is enough to remove Trump from office is a question for the Senate.
#5--"You got this guy Schiff. He makes up a statement and he goes in front of Congress where he has immunity, and he makes up a statement from me that’s totally fictitious, totally out of thin air, the worst statement I’ve ever heard, many people saw it.”
Mostly false. Rep. Adam B. Schiff [D--CA] inserted some extraneous comments as he read the rough transcript of Trump’s July 25 phone call with Zelensky.
There is no exact transcript of the conversation, as the summary was cobbled together from notes, so Schiff told the audience “this is the essence of what the president communicates.”. . . . [H]e stretched in claiming Trump asked Zelensky to “make up” or “manufacture” dirt. . . .
#6--“Where’s the proof? It’s coming, it’s coming. Then, we get the Mueller report — nothing.”
False. Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III revealed significant criminal activity by some of Trump’s campaign advisers and by Russian individuals and entities.
Mueller concluded Russian government actors successfully hacked into computers and obtained emails from people associated with the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party organizations, and then publicly disseminated those materials . . . .
[. . . ]
“If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state,” the report says. “Based on the facts and the applicable legal standards, however, we are unable to reach that judgment. . . . [W]hile this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
Some of that is material covered in earlier HT posts, but so many charges and counter-charges have been thrown around that I thought it might be helpful to reduce the fact-findings down to a limited number of responses to questions that have particularly confused the public.