Home News Business AP FACT CHECK: Trump’s fact-challenged week over impeachment

AP FACT CHECK: Trump’s fact-challenged week over impeachment

WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing an impeachment inquiry, President Donald Trump is popping to a well-recognized playbook to defend himself: attacking his investigators , blasting the inquiry as unlawful and deriding the method as all-but-rigged.

Many info are getting misplaced within the course of.

He repeatedly lambasted Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman who’s main the impeachment assessment, as responsible of treason or defamation for mocking Trump’s July 25 telephone name with Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Neither cost is legitimate.

Trump additionally assailed the whistleblower grievance as improperly filed and “dishonest,” in contrast with a “word for word” transcript of the decision. Actually, no precise transcript exists, and the performing director of nationwide intelligence advised Congress that he believed the whistleblower grievance was “in alignment” with a tough transcript launched by the White House.

Trump had an analogous playbook to dispute the Russia investigation by assailing particular counsel Robert Mueller as biased and saying the inquiry was illegally hatched by Democrats. Those expenses have been proven to be unfaithful.

Meanwhile, amid indicators of producing weak spot , Trump unfairly pointed a finger of blame on the Federal Reserve reasonably than his escalating commerce struggle with China, and overstated his function in a World Trade Organization ruling for the United States.

A assessment:


TRUMP: “As I learn more and more each day, I am coming to the conclusion that what is taking place is not an impeachment, it is a COUP, intended to take away the Power of the….People.” — tweet Tuesday.

THE FACTS: No unlawful coup is afoot.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., final month initiated impeachment proceedings in opposition to Trump. She accused him of abusing presidential powers by searching for assist from a international authorities to undermine Democratic rival Joe Biden and assist his personal reelection. The transfer adopted a grievance by a whistleblower, a CIA officer, who made the costs.

A coup is normally outlined as a sudden, violent and unlawful seizure of presidency energy. The impeachment course of is specified by the Constitution, giving Congress the authority to question and check out a president as a part of its duties as a coequal department of presidency to offer a verify on a president when she or he commits treason, bribery, or “other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

The customary of “high crimes and misdemeanors” is imprecise and open-ended to embody abuses of energy even when they aren’t, strictly talking, unlawful.



TRUMP: “The Do Nothing Democrats should be focused on building up our Country, not wasting everyone’s time and energy on BULLSHIT, which is what they have been doing ever since I got overwhelmingly elected in 2016, 223-306.” — tweet Wednesday.

THE FACTS: Trump once more misstates the Electoral College vote. The official depend was 304 to 227, in accordance with an Associated Press tally of the electoral votes in each state.



TRUMP: “I had a transcript done by very, very talented people — word for word, comma for comma. … We had an exact transcript. And when we produced that transcript, they died.” — information convention Wednesday with Finland’s president.

TRUMP: “They never thought in a million years that I’d release the conversation … And this is an exact word-for-word transcript of the conversation, right? Taken by very talented stenographers.” — remarks Wednesday to reporters within the Oval Office.

THE FACTS: It’s not a word-for-word transcript.

The memorandum of Trump’s July 25 telephone name with Zelenskiy itself makes clear that it doesn’t symbolize an actual transcript of what was mentioned.

According to the doc, it’s “not a verbatim transcript” and as an alternative “records the notes and recollections of Situation Room Duty Officers and NSC policy staff assigned to listen and memorialize the conversation in written form as the conversation takes place. A number of factors can affect the accuracy of the record.” It cited potential elements akin to the standard of the telephone connection, variations in accent “and/or interpretation.”

NSC refers back to the National Security Council.

The performing director of nationwide intelligence, Joseph Maguire, advised a House panel final month that he believed the whistleblower acted in “good faith” and the grievance was in line with the White House’s tough transcript.


TRUMP, on the whistleblower: “He got his information, I guess, second or thirdhand. He wrote something that was total fiction.” — remarks to reporters Thursday.

GOP HOUSE MINORITY LEADER KEVIN McCARTHY: “Whistleblowers were required to provide direct, first-hand knowledge of allegations…but just days before the Ukraine whistleblower came forward, the IC secretly removed the requirement from the complaint form.” — tweet on Sept. 28.

TRUMP: “Who changed the long standing whistleblower rules just before submittal of the fake whistleblower report? Drain the swamp!” — tweet Monday.

THE FACTS: The course of for submitting a whistleblower grievance was not rigged in opposition to Trump.

There was nothing improper in how the grievance was submitted. No whistleblower regulation was modified and nothing underneath that regulation requires the complaints to have firsthand info. In a uncommon assertion this previous week , the inspector normal for the intelligence neighborhood additionally made clear that it had decided the whistleblower did have some firsthand, “direct knowledge of certain alleged conduct.”

It’s not true that the whistleblower may “provide nothing more than secondhand or unsubstantiated assertions,” the IG mentioned.

Intelligence company employees have lengthy been in a position to blow the whistle primarily based on secondhand or rumour info. The regulation solely requires federal employees to have a “reasonable belief” of misconduct with a purpose to file a grievance, in accordance with Debra D’Agostino, a federal employment lawyer.

In this case, the whistleblower flagged partially Trump’s July name to Zelenskiy in a typed, nine-page doc addressed to the House Intelligence Committee. The watchdog mentioned that whereas the whistleblower was not a direct witness to the decision, the inspector normal individually obtained different info throughout its preliminary assessment to deem the allegations credible.

Pointing to suspicious exercise, McCarthy, R-Calif., cites the removing of some info from the standardized grievance type, which beforehand pressured the necessity for firsthand info for an inspector normal to find out the grievance credible. The inspector normal’s workplace mentioned it had eliminated that language from the shape earlier this yr as a result of it decided that “it could be read – incorrectly – as suggesting that whistleblowers must possess first-hand information in order to file an urgent concern complaint with the congressional intelligence committees.”

In any occasion, the inspector normal’s workplace mentioned it had offered the whistleblower separate background materials on submitting a grievance that included that language.



TRUMP: “Congressman Adam Schiff should resign for the Crime of, after reading a transcript of my conversation with the President of Ukraine (it was perfect), fraudulently fabricating a statement of the President of the United States and reading it to Congress, as though mine!” — tweet Wednesday.

TRUMP: “Rep. Adam Schiff illegally made up a FAKE & terrible statement, pretended it to be mine as the most important part of my call to the Ukrainian President, and read it aloud to Congress and the American people. It bore NO relationship to what I said on the call. Arrest for Treason?” — tweet Monday.

THE FACTS: Trump is overstating Schiff’s exaggerations. The California Democrat, in what he mentioned was a parody throughout a committee listening to, mocked and overstated the president’s pleas in his July name to Zelenskiy, as Trump does along with his critics routinely.

Under the Constitution, treason happens when a U.S. citizen, or a noncitizen on U.S. territory, wages struggle in opposition to the nation or offers materials assist, not simply sympathy, to a declared enemy of the United States. It is outlined narrowly as a part of an effort by the framers to stop the federal government from utilizing it as a cause to suppress political speech, mentioned J. Richard Broughton, affiliate dean at University of Detroit Mercy and a member of the Republican National Lawyers Association.

The govt department can solely deliver expenses in extraordinarily restricted instances.

For occasion, within the Cold War case of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who had been executed for giving atomic secrets and techniques to Russia, the Rosenbergs had been convicted of espionage, not treason, as a result of the U.S. and Russia weren’t formally at struggle. No one has been convicted of treason because the aftermath of World War II, says Carlton F.W. Larson, a University of California regulation professor who has a e book on treason.

During final week’s House Intelligence Committee listening to, Schiff made clear he was offering an account that was in “essence” what he believed Trump was conveying to Zelenskiy, when “shorn of its rambling character.”

No precise transcript of Trump’s feedback with Ukraine’s president truly exists, only a tough transcript launched by the White House.


TRUMP: “Liddle’ Adam Schiff … fraudulently and illegally inserted his made up & twisted words into my call with the Ukrainian President to make it look like I did something very wrong. He then boldly read those words to Congress and millions of people, defaming & libeling me.” — tweets on Sept. 28.

THE FACTS: Schiff’s remarks should not unlawful nor would it not be defamatory or libelous. Lawmakers are given extensive protections from legal responsibility for feedback made in the middle of Congress underneath the “speech or debate” clause within the Constitution, which seeks to foster political debate.



TRUMP, on a World Trade Organization ruling permitting the U.S. to tax impose tariffs on $7.5 billion price of European imports yearly: “You never had wins with other presidents, did you? But we’re having a lot of wins at the WTO since I became president.” — information convention Wednesday.

THE FACTS: Trump is improper that the U.S. by no means received any WTO victories underneath different presidents.

The U.S. has all the time had a excessive success fee when it pursues instances in opposition to different international locations on the WTO. In 2017, commerce analyst Daniel Ikenson of the libertarian Cato Institute discovered that the U.S. had received 91% of time it introduced a grievance that ended up being adjudicated by the Geneva-based commerce monitor. True, Ikenson famous, the international locations bringing complaints are inclined to win overwhelmingly. That’s as a result of they don’t trouble going to the WTO within the first place in the event that they don’t have a reasonably robust case.

The WTO announcement culminated a 15-year combat over EU subsidies for Airbus — a combat that started lengthy earlier than Trump was in workplace.


TRUMP: “As I predicted, Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve have allowed the Dollar to get so strong, especially relative to ALL other currencies, that our manufacturers are being negatively affected. Fed Rate too high.” — tweet Tuesday.

THE FACTS: Actually, most economists and plenty of manufacturing facility homeowners level to Trump’s commerce insurance policies for the difficulties in U.S. manufacturing, not the Federal Reserve and Chairman Jerome Powell.

The Institute for Supply Management reported on Tuesday that manufacturing facility exercise shrank in September for the second straight month. That report reveals that the manufacturing facility sector has been contracting largely due to the commerce struggle in opposition to China that Trump sparked by launching a salvo of tariffs.

The index relies on a survey of producers. Of the 10 quoted within the report, none blames the challenges they face on the Fed or the robust greenback. But three say the tariffs and commerce struggle have damage their companies.

“The primary culprit here is the trade war,” Eric Winograd, senior U.S. economist at AllianceBernstein, mentioned Tuesday.

Trump is correct that the Fed’s choice to lift short-term rates of interest 4 occasions final yr contributed to a stronger greenback. But it wasn’t the one issue. The U.S. economic system is rising extra shortly than Europe’s or Japan’s, which attracts extra funding and boosts the greenback’s worth. And many world traders want to spend money on U.S. Treasury securities when the worldwide economic system slows, as it’s now, as a result of Treasuries are seen as a secure haven. That additionally pushes up the greenback.

The Fed has reversed itself this yr and minimize its benchmark rate of interest twice, however that hasn’t weakened the greenback, as a result of different central banks are additionally reducing charges. Trump has beforehand urged the Fed to slash its fee to zero, however that might spook customers and companies, who may see it as an indication {that a} recession is close to. Consumer spending may fall in consequence and gradual the U.S. economic system.

The form of sharp fee cuts by the Fed that Trump is demanding would additionally possible encourage traders to put more cash in shares and different speculative investments. This would danger inflating a inventory market bubble to ranges which may finally destabilize the U.S. economic system.


AP Economics Writers Josh Boak and Christopher Rugaber in Washington and Associated Press author Amanda Seitz in Chicago contributed to this report.


Find AP Fact Checks at http://apne.ws/2kbx8bd

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EDITOR’S NOTE _ A take a look at the veracity of claims by political figures

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