6 fact checks you should read on Trump's RNC acceptance speech
Donald Trump's candidacy has been invoked by many as exhibit No. 1 that we have now entered a "post-fact" era (but have we really?).
This hasn't stopped fact-checkers from scrutinizing his acceptance speech Thursday night at the RNC. Here are six fact checks you can't miss:
1. On crime
Trump said that "decades of progress made in bringing down crime are now being reversed by this administration's rollback of criminal enforcement. Homicides last year increased by 17 percent in America's 50 largest cities. That's the largest increase in 25 years."
There are two parts to this claim. The long-term picture is pretty clear and shows violent crime has been falling throughout the Obama years. Despite that, figures from 2015 and 2016 do show an uptick in many large cities. Scroll down to "not a reversal in crime trend" in this article for Factcheck.org's analysis.
2. On police officers' deaths
Trump claimed that "the number of police officers killed in the line of duty has risen by almost 50 percent compared to this point last year." Overall, the increase is much lower, though deaths by firearm have increased more this year. Here's NPR on this:
The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund says as of July 21, 2016, total fatalities this year compared with the same time last year reflect an increase of five deaths, or 8 percent. Deaths related to firearms are up by 14 deaths, or 78 percent.
And here is the link to the latest figures from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.
3. On falling incomes
Trump seemed to nod at a central topic in the Bernie Sanders campaign by saying that "household incomes are down more than $4,000 since the year 2000. That's 16 years ago."
The Washington Post Fact Checker suggests these numbers are correct, but outdated:
This is a stale statistic, based on 2014 Census data, which ignores the fact that incomes have risen sharply in the last two years.
A more up to date figure is obtained from the nonpartisan economic consulting firm Sentier Research produces a monthly report using data from the Census Bureau’s monthly household survey.
The most recent report, released on the day of Trump’s speech, shows median annual household income in June was $57,206, slightly below the income of $57,826 in January 2000, in 2016 dollars. So it is essentially flat, not down $4,000.
4. On Emailgate
Trump correctly quoted FBI director James Comey as saying that Clinton was "extremely careless" and "negligent" in handling classified information. Here's a PolitiFact fact sheet on the Democratic nominee's email controversy.
5. On refugees
"My opponent has called for a radical 550 percent increase in Syrian [refugees], think of this," said Trump, getting it right.
Yet he added almost in the same breath that "she proposes this despite the fact that there's no way to screen these refugees in order to find out who they are or where they come from." In fact, screening procedures are extremely articulated, according to Politifact:
6. On taxes
Trump's claim that "America is one of the highest-taxed nations in the world" comes as a surprise to an Italian living in Florida — and is well off the mark. Here's PolitiFact on the topic: