Checking the facts
January 8, 2019

President Trump made many claims during his Oval Office address on Tuesday night, and Fox News anchor Shep Smith was quick to fact-check them all, sharing with the audience that much of what Trump said was misleading.

Trump spoke about murder rates by migrants, but "government statistics show that there is less violent crime by the undocumented immigrant population than by the general population," Smith said. Trump also talked about drugs coming over the border, however "government statistics show much of the heroin actually comes not over the unguarded border but through ports of call."

Smith moved on to discuss border crossings, telling viewers that "the number of undocumented crossings over the southern border has been steadily down over the last 10 years, and the government reports there is more outward traffic than inward traffic." Trump declared during the address that a trade deal made with Mexico will pay for the wall, but "that trade deal is not yet complete," Smith said. Finally, Trump said law enforcement professionals asked for $5.7 billion for a wall along the southern border, but "it was he who requested it, and it's he who said he would own the shutdown. Nevertheless, he's making the case to keep his base together on this matter." Watch the video below. Catherine Garcia

December 21, 2015

Each December, the nonpartisan fact-checking website PolitiFact chooses the year's biggest falsehood. But in 2015, thanks to Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump, they couldn't select just one claim worthy of being Lie of the Year. So instead, that honor went to all of Trump's campaign misstatements.

Of the 77 Trump claims PolitiFact has tackled so far, 76 percent of them have rated Mostly False, False, or Pants on Fire.

"Trump hasn't apologized or backtracked on his statements," PolitiFact notes. "Instead, when challenged, he offers flimsy explanations and suggests he shouldn’t be held accountable — or simply insists he's right."

Read PolitiFact's full breakdown of Trump's consistent aversion to facts here. Julie Kliegman

August 26, 2015

Jeb Bush's nose grew a bit longer this week when he claimed that Planned Parenthood was "not actually doing women's health issues," The Washington Post's fact checker reports. Speaking off the cuff at a town hall event in Colorado Tuesday, Bush explained why he cut off state funding to Planned Parenthood when he was governor of Florida, saying he thinks the U.S. should be directing resources away from Planned Parenthood and toward women's health issues. "I, for one, don't think Planned Parenthood ought to get a penny, though," Bush said. "And that's the difference, because they're not actually doing women's health issues. They are involved in something way different than that."

That is "patently untrue," The Washington Post reports. So untrue, in fact, that The Post gave Bush four out of four Pinocchios. While Planned Parenthood does provide abortions, which was likely the sole activity Bush had in mind when he made this comment, The Post points out that it also provides "an array of women's health services, including Pap tests, female sterilization, contraception, and urinary tract infection treatments."

Moreover, Planned Parenthood accounts for 10 percent of publicly funded family planning centers, and serves over one-third of women who rely on such centers. While conservatives argue that community organizations could absorb Planned Parenthood's services should funding be pulled, the Post contends that "there are data that both support and refute that point."

"If it is his goal to make that point," The Post adds, "Bush needs to refine his answer to accurately reflect underlying data." Becca Stanek

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