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AP FACT CHECK: Trump’s distortions on immigration

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President Donald Trump speaks at a marketing campaign rally in Indianapolis, Friday, Nov. 2, 2018. (AP Photograph/Michael Conroy)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump peddled distorted theories and bogus numbers on immigration as he tried to fire up voters’ worries a few migrant procession in Mexico, and he additionally used the marketing campaign’s ultimate days to say financial positive aspects for minorities that haven’t been achieved.

A take a look at 11th hour rhetoric earlier than the elections Tuesday and the truth:


TRUMP, on attracting the nonwhite vote from Democrats: “We have the best unemployment numbers, the best median income numbers for all of these groups. We have the best numbers we’ve ever had. …They should be worried about the African-Americans, because they’re going to lose them.” — Fox interview Monday.

THE FACTS: He didn’t obtain one of the best median revenue numbers for all of the nonwhite teams. Each African-People and Asian-People had larger revenue previous to the Trump administration.

The median revenue final yr for a black family was $40,258, in response to the Census Bureau. That’s under a 2000 peak of $42,348 and in addition statistically no higher than 2016, President Barack Obama’s final yr in workplace.

Many economists view the continued financial progress because the center of 2009, in Obama’s first time period, as the first rationalization for current hiring and revenue good points. Extra necessary, there are a number of indicators that the racial wealth hole is now worsening whilst unemployment charges have come down.

As to Asian-People, the median revenue for a typical family final yr was $81,331. It was $83,182 in 2016.



TRUMP, on the follow of permitting immigrants caught crossing the border illegally to remain in U.S. communities as they await immigration hearings: “We’re not doing releases. What’s been happening over years is they would come in, release them, and they would never show up for their trial. And we now have 25 or 30 million people in this country illegally, because of what’s been happening over many years.” — remarks Wednesday to reporters.

THE FACTS: It’s nowhere near 25 million to 30 million, nor has the quantity elevated a lot in recent times.

The nonpartisan Pew Analysis Middle estimates there have been 11.three million immigrants within the U.S. illegally in 2016, the newest knowledge obtainable. That quantity is principally unchanged from 2009. Advocacy teams on each side of the immigration challenge have comparable estimates.

The variety of such immigrants had reached a peak of 12.2 million in 2007, representing about four % of the U.S. inhabitants, earlier than declining due partially to a weakening U.S. financial system.


TRUMP, on tweeting a video blaming Democrats permitting a person to enter the U.S. who killed two cops: “All I’m doing is just telling the truth.” — chatting with reporters Friday.

THE FACTS: The video he unfold round doesn’t inform the reality. It says Democrats let Luis Bracamontes into the nation and “let him stay.”

Bracamontes entered the U.S. illegally, in 1996, in the course of the Democratic administration of President Invoice Clinton, however he was additionally deported by that administration the subsequent yr after being caught shopping for crack cocaine and serving his sentence. He returned repeatedly. By the point he was sentenced to demise in California for the 2014 killings of the cops, he had been deported 4 occasions, in line with Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones.

No proof of leniency by Democrats has emerged within the episode. Democratic and Republican administrations alike have deported a whole lot of hundreds of individuals a yr and no administration, Trump’s included, has caught everybody making an attempt to enter illegally.


TRUMP on what U.S. troops ought to do if encountering migrants who’re making an attempt to get to the border from Mexico: “I didn’t say shoot, I didn’t say shoot.” — remarks to reporters Friday.

THE FACTS: A day earlier, he stated of the migrants: “They want to throw rocks at our military, our military fights back. I told them, consider it a rifle.”

The procession has been largely peaceable. Some migrants in a single caravan clashed with Mexican police on the Mexico-Guatemala border, hurling stones.


TRUMP: “President Obama separated the children from parents and nobody complained. When we continued the exact same law, the country went crazy.” — immigration speech Thursday.

THE FACTS: Truly, Obama didn’t do the identical factor as a matter of coverage.

Whereas it’s true the underlying legal guidelines have been the identical, the Trump administration mandated anybody caught crossing the border illegally was to be criminally prosecuted. That coverage meant adults have been taken to courtroom for legal proceedings, and their youngsters have been separated and despatched into the care of the Well being and Human Providers Division, which is tasked with caring for unaccompanied migrant youngsters. Trump’s zero tolerance coverage stays in impact, however he signed an government order June 20 that stopped separations.

Jeh Johnson, Obama’s Homeland Safety secretary, just lately advised NPR there might have been uncommon or emergency circumstances when youngsters have been taken from mother and father, however there was no such coverage.


TRUMP: “At this very moment, large well-organized caravans of migrants are marching towards our southern border. Some people call it an invasion. …These are tough people in many cases; a lot of young men, strong men and a lot of men that maybe we don’t want in our country. …This isn’t an innocent group of people. It’s a large number of people that are tough. They have injured, they have attacked.” — immigration speech Thursday.

THE FACTS: He’s given no proof that folks within the caravans are, by and enormous, harmful, hardened criminals — after acknowledging at one level that there isn’t a such proof.

The migrants within the caravans are principally from Honduras, the place it began, in addition to El Salvador and Guatemala. General, they’re poor, carrying the belongings that match right into a knapsack and fleeing gang violence or poverty.

It may be true there are some criminals combined in with the throngs, given the sheer variety of migrants. Trump didn’t substantiate his declare that members of the MS-13 gang, particularly, are amongst them. The Homeland Safety Division issued a sheet stating that “over 270 individuals along the caravan route have criminal histories, including known gang membership.” However it didn’t specify the way it had arrived at that quantity.

Some migrants in one of many caravans clashed with Mexican police on the Mexico-Guatemala border, hurling stones and different objects as they tried to cross the worldwide bridge. One migrant died; it’s not clear the way it occurred. Caravan leaders stated that they had expelled a variety of troublemakers from the procession, exhibiting some self-policing. Finally, most entered Guatemala — and later, Mexico — by illegally bypassing immigration checkpoints.

The caravan in any other case has been overwhelmingly peaceable, receiving applause and donated meals from residents of the cities they move. Mexican police haven’t tried once more to cease them.



TRUMP: “It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don’t. … Well, you can definitely do it with an act of Congress. But now they’re saying I can do it just with an executive order.” — interview revealed Tuesday with “Axios on HBO.”

THE FACTS: Students extensively pan the concept Trump might unilaterally change the principles on who’s a citizen. It’s extremely questionable whether or not an act of Congress might do it, both, although it’s conceivable that legislators might change the principles relating to youngsters born within the U.S. of oldsters who’re within the nation illegally.

Peter Schuck is probably probably the most outstanding advocate of the concept birthright citizenship shouldn’t be conveyed by the Structure to youngsters of oldsters who’re dwelling illegally within the U.S. Even he says “Trump clearly cannot act by” government order.

“I feel confident that no competent lawyer would advise him otherwise,” he stated by e mail Tuesday. “This is just pre-election politics and misrepresentation and should be sharply criticized as such.”

Schuck, of Yale, and colleague Rogers Smith of the College of Pennsylvania have argued because the mid-1980s that Congress can set the principles for offering citizenship to U.S.-born youngsters of oldsters who got here illegally.

However most students on the left and proper share the view that it will take a constitutional modification to disclaim automated citizenship to youngsters born within the U.S. to oldsters who’re within the nation illegally.

James Ho, a conservative Trump-appointed federal appeals courtroom decide, wrote within the Inexperienced Bag authorized journal in 2006 that birthright citizenship “is protected no less for children of undocumented persons than for descendants of Mayflower passengers.”

Stephen Yale-Loehr, a Cornell college immigration professional, stated the case towards Trump’s authority is “not open and shut, but the better view is it would require a constitutional amendment.”

The Structure’s citizenship clause was a part of the post-Civil Struggle amendments that enshrined the rights of African-People. The citizenship clause, particularly, was meant to overturn the Supreme Courtroom’s infamous Dred Scott choice of 1857 that held African-People weren’t residents.

The Supreme Courtroom has by no means dominated squarely concerning the clause’s software to youngsters of immigrants who’re within the U.S. illegally. Trump didn’t make a distinction between authorized and unlawful standing in his remarks. An 1898 Supreme Courtroom choice held that the U.S.-born son of authorized Chinese language immigrants was a citizen beneath the 14th Modification; a footnote in a 1982 determination suggests there ought to be no distinction for youngsters of foreign-born mother and father whether or not they’re within the U.S. legally or illegally.


TRUMP: “We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in, has a baby and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits. It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end.” — interview with “Axios on HBO.”

THE FACTS: That’s mistaken.

The U.S. is amongst about 30 nations the place birthright citizenship — the precept of jus soli or “right of the soil” — is utilized, in accordance with the World Atlas and different sources. Most are within the Americas. Canada and Mexico are amongst them. Most different nations confer citizenship based mostly on that of at the least one mother or father — jus sanguinis, or “right of blood” — or have a modified type of birthright citizenship which will prohibit automated citizenship to youngsters of oldsters who’re on their territory legally.

Extra broadly, Trump’s view that U.S.-born youngsters of foreigners stay a lifetime of taking “all those benefits” ignores the taxes they pay, the work they do and their different contributions to society.



SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, White Home press secretary: Trump “got elected by an overwhelming majority of 63 million Americans who came out and supported him and wanted to see his policies enacted.” — press briefing Monday.

THE FACTS: Trump didn’t earn a majority of votes within the 2016 election. He did win the Electoral School, permitting him to seize the presidency.

Trump gained almost 63 million votes in contrast with greater than 65 million for Democrat Hillary Clinton, who racked up lopsided victories in huge states reminiscent of New York and California, in accordance with election knowledge compiled by The Related Press. However she misplaced the presidency because of Trump’s profitable margin within the Electoral School, which got here after he narrowly gained much less populous Midwestern states together with Michigan and Wisconsin.



TRUMP, on Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum: “His city, Tallahassee, is known as the most corrupt in Florida and one of the most corrupt in the nation.” — Fox interview Monday.

THE FACTS: Trump is making an unsubstantiated assertion. Republicans together with Gillum’s opponent, Ron DeSantis, have made crime and corruption a speaking level within the governor’s race to knock down the Tallahassee mayor’s political momentum, saying it’s a crime-ridden metropolis. However Tallahassee just isn’t even within the prime 25 relating to metropolis per-capita crime charges in Florida. The Florida Division of Regulation Enforcement studies that Tallahassee had 5,765 crimes per 100,000 individuals in 2017. By comparability, the Florida metropolis with the very best price, Medley, had 28,004 crimes per 100,000 individuals.

Trump, who confused the precept of harmless till confirmed responsible when allegations shadowed Supreme Courtroom nominee Brett Kavanaugh, has additionally pointed to an ongoing investigation by the state’s ethics fee into whether or not Gillum accepted presents from lobbyists after a Tallahassee businessman and protracted critic of Gillum filed a grievance. Gillum has denied any wrongdoing in that case, or that he’s a goal in a separate ongoing FBI investigation into the town’s authorities.


Related Press writers Colleen Lengthy and Mark Sherman in Washington and Elliot Spagat in San Diego contributed to this report.


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