AP FACT CHECK: Trump’s financial fiction: ‘report’ GDP, jobs ๐Ÿ—ž๐Ÿ‘

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WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is distorting the reality on U.S. financial progress and jobs, pointing to record-breaking figures that donโ€™t exist and never telling the complete story on black unemployment.

He cites the highest-ever gross home product for the U.S. thatโ€™s not there and predicts a spectacular 5 p.c annual progress charge within the present quarter that hardly any economist sees. On black joblessness, he boasts of a โ€œnewโ€ report low, however the numbers in reality have just lately ticked upward, with better declines seen in the course of the Obama administration.

The statements marked every week of fiction by which Trump additionally made faulty claims concerning the California wildfires and the Russia investigation and falsely declared that his tariffs on overseas items will assist erase $21 trillion in nationwide debt.

Meanwhile, Sen. Bernie Sanders skimmed over the information in asserting that his โ€œMedicare for allโ€ plan would cut back U.S. well being spending by $2 trillion.

A take a look at the claims:

ECONOMY AND JOBS

TRUMP: โ€œOne new and great FACT – African American unemployment is the lowest ever recorded in the history of our Country. So honored by this.โ€ – tweet Friday.

TRUMP: โ€œI am proud to have fought for and secured the LOWEST African American and Hispanic unemployment rates in history.โ€ – tweet Saturday.

THE FACTS: Not precisely. He omits essential caveats.

Black unemployment did attain a report low, 5.9 p.c, in May. That charge has since risen to six.6 p.c in July.

Despite some latest progress, the black unemployment charge is now practically double that of whites, which is three.four p.c. The most dramatic drop in black unemployment got here below President Barack Obama, when it fell from a recession excessive of 16.eight p.c in March 2010 to 7.eight p.c in January 2017.

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TRUMP: โ€œEconomic growth, last quarter, hit the 4.1. We anticipate this next quarter to be – this is just an estimate, but already theyโ€™re saying it could be in the fives โ€ฆ I think weโ€™re going to be very shortly in the fives.โ€ – remarks Tuesday earlier than a bunch of enterprise executives.

TRUMP: โ€œAs you know, weโ€™re doing record and close-to-record GDP.โ€ – remarks Tuesday.

THE FACTS: No. These are the most recent in a string of exaggerated claims that Trump has made concerning the U.S. economic system.

While economists are typically optimistic about progress, only a few anticipate the economic system will develop at a 5 p.c annual charge within the July-September quarter the president referred to. Macroeconomic Advisers, a consulting agency in St. Louis, forecasts three.2 p.c progress within the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase economists have penciled in three.5 p.c. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta pegs it at four.three p.c.

Whatever the ultimate quantity seems to be, none of those figures represents report or close-to-record progress for gross home product, the broadest measure of the nationโ€™s output. The four.1 p.c progress within the second quarter was merely probably the most since 2014.

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TRUMP: โ€œWeโ€™ve created 3.9 million more jobs since Election Day – so almost 4 million jobs – which is unthinkable.โ€ – remarks Thursday at jail reform occasion in Bedminster, N.J.

THE FACTS: Itโ€™s not that unthinkable, since extra jobs have been created in the identical interval earlier than the November 2016 election than afterward.

Itโ€™s true that within the 20 months since Trumpโ€™s election, the economic system has generated three.9 million jobs. In the 20 months earlier than his election, nevertheless, employers added four.three million jobs.

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TRUMP: โ€œGreat financial numbers being announced on an almost daily basis. Economy has never been better, jobs at best point in history.โ€ – tweet Aug. 6.

THE FACTS: Heโ€™s exaggerating. The economic system is wholesome now, nevertheless it has been in higher form at many occasions up to now.

Growth reached four.1 p.c at an annual charge within the second quarter, which Trump highlighted late final month with remarks on the White House. But itโ€™s solely the perfect up to now 4 years. So far, the economic system is increasing at a modest charge in contrast with earlier financial expansions. In the late 1990s, progress topped four p.c for 4 straight years, from 1997 by 2000. And within the 1980s growth, progress even reached 7.2 p.c in 1984.

Itโ€™s not clear what Trump particularly means when he declares that jobs are on the โ€œbest point in history,โ€ however primarily based on a number of indicators, heโ€™s off the mark.

The unemployment charge of three.9 p.c just isn’t at the perfect level ever – it’s truly close to the bottom in 18 years. The all-time low got here in 1953, when unemployment fell to 2.5 p.c in the course of the Korean War. And whereas economists have been shocked to see employers add 215,000 jobs a month this yr, a wholesome enhance, employers in reality added jobs at a sooner tempo in 2014 and 2015. A better share of Americans held jobs in 2000 than now.

Trump didnโ€™t point out in all probability crucial measure of financial well being for Americans – wages. While paychecks are slowly grinding greater, inflation is now canceling out the good points. Lifted by greater gasoline costs, client costs elevated 2.9 p.c in June from a yr earlier, probably the most in six years.

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RUSSIA INVESTIGATION

TRUMP: โ€œโ€˜Bob Mueller, isnโ€™t your whole investigation premised on a Fake Dossier, paid for by Hillary, created by a man who hates Donald Trump, & used to con a FISA Court Judge. Bob, I really think itโ€™s time for you to give up your phony investigation.โ€™ No Collusion!โ€ – tweet Sunday, citing Fox News Channel host Jeanine Pirro.

THE FACTS: Trump quotes partly Pirro to falsely declare that particular counsel Robert Muellerโ€™s Russia probe relies on a โ€œfake dossier.โ€ In reality, the FBIโ€™s investigation started months earlier than it obtained a file of anti-Trump analysis financed by the Democratic Party and Hillary Clintonโ€™s marketing campaign. The FBI probeโ€™s origins have been primarily based on different proof – not the existence of the file.

The Republican-controlled House Intelligence Committee discovered the Russia probe was initiated after the FBI obtained data associated to Trump marketing campaign overseas coverage adviser George Papadopoulos, not the file. The committeeโ€™s last report was praised by Trump.

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TARIFFS AND THE DEFICIT

TRUMP: โ€œBecause of Tariffs we will be able to start paying down large amounts of the $21 Trillion in debt that has been accumulated, much by the Obama Administration, while at the same time reducing taxes for our people.โ€ – tweet Aug. 5.

THE FACTS: This isnโ€™t going to occur.

The Treasury Department estimates that every one tariffs at the moment in place will increase about $40 billion in income within the 2018 funds yr, which ends Sept. 30. Even with the latest tariff will increase Trump has applied or threatened to place in place, it clearly wouldnโ€™t be sufficient to scale back the $21 trillion nationwide debt. Itโ€™s simply 5 p.c of what the president would wish to remove the annual funds deficit of $804 billion that the Congressional Budget Office predicts for this yr. The nationwide debt represents the buildup of all of the annual deficits.

The president appears to imagine that foreigners pay tariffs, however they’re import taxes paid for by American companies and customers. They might make it tougher for different international locations to promote issues within the United States, however they’re simply one other type of tax and don’t lead to decrease taxes for the American individuals general.

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FOOD STAMPS

TRUMP: โ€œAlmost 3.9 million Americans have been lifted off food stamps – thatโ€™s since the election. โ€ฆ Thatโ€™s some number. Thatโ€™s a big number.โ€ – Ohio rally on Aug. four.

TRUMP: โ€œMore than 3.5 million Americans have been lifted off food stamps – something that you havenโ€™t seen in decades.โ€ – remarks at White House on July 27.

WHITE HOUSE: โ€œMore than 2.8 million have stopped participating in the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) – commonly known as food stamps – since Trumpโ€™s first full month in office.โ€ – data sheet launched Tuesday, citing Fox Business report.

THE FACTS: Trump and the White House omit essential context and overstate his function in lowering the variety of individuals on meals stamps. Nor is it correct that latest declines are the largest in a long time. Itโ€™s true, because the White House conveys, that greater than 2.eight million individuals stopped taking part in this system in the course of the 15-month interval from February 2017, Trumpโ€™s first full month in workplace, to May 2018, the most recent Agriculture Department knowledge accessible. But this decline is per a longer-term downward development in meals stamp utilization due to an enhancing economic system. Currently there are 39.three million individuals in this system; meals stamp utilization peaked in 2013 at round 47.6 million, following the recession.

For occasion, within the 15-month interval earlier than Trumpโ€™s first full month in workplace, meals stamps declined by three.three million – bigger than the two.eight million that dropped off below Trumpโ€™s watch.

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MEDICARE

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: โ€œMedicare for All will lead to a $2 TRILLION REDUCTION in national health expenditures over 10 years.โ€ – tweet July 30.

THE FACTS: Sandersโ€™ tweet and YouTube video are being broadly echoed by supporters of a government-run nationwide well being system. But the Vermont unbiased mischaracterizes a examine from a libertarian coverage institute that discovered his laws would lead to an enormous increase in federal spending and taxation.

The examine from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University in Virginia additionally concluded that Medicare for all is unlikely to supply a dividend for U.S. society within the type of decrease complete well being care spending. To get that end result would require paying hospitals and docs a lot lower than they get now and threat placing some out of enterprise.

The examine discovered that if hospitals and docs have been prepared to just accept Medicare-based funds of 40 p.c much less for sufferers who at the moment have personal insurance coverage, then projected U.S. well being care spending would decline by about three p.c from 2022 to 2031, or $2.05 trillion. Itโ€™s a giant asterisk, and one which Sanders fails to reveal.

Thatโ€™s the quantity Sanders is celebrating.

But the examine additionally mentioned if medical suppliers proceed to be paid about the identical as now, U.S. well being care spending would enhance by $three.25 trillion over 10 years below Medicare for all. It works out to about 5 p.c extra.

Thatโ€™s far totally different from Sandersโ€™ assurance that his plan โ€œwill leadโ€ to large spending reductions.

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WILDFIRES AND WATER

TRUMP: โ€œCalifornia wildfires are being magnified & made so much worse by the bad environmental laws which arenโ€™t allowing massive amounts of readily available water to be properly utilized. It is being diverted into the Pacific Ocean.โ€ – tweet Aug. 6.

THE FACTS: Thatโ€™s not what state consultants say.

โ€œWe have plenty of waterโ€ for battling the large blazes burning in hills north of San Francisco, mentioned Scott McLean, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. The present spate of wildfires occurs to be inside vary of huge Northern California lakes and the stateโ€™s largest river, McLean mentioned.

Nor is having sufficient water an issue in battling California wildfires usually. Firefighting plane can dip out and in of cattle ponds or different small our bodies of water to scoop up water for dropping and spraying on flames. When fires burn in an space that occurs to be with out ponds, lakes or rivers, state officers usually name in additional planes to ferry in water, McLean mentioned.

Californiaโ€™s battles over divvying up water within the arid state are endless, however a battle between firefighters and the Pacific Ocean hasnโ€™t been one in all them, in keeping with Jay Lund, a civil and environmental engineering professor on the University of California, Davis, and a longtime analyst of the stateโ€™s water wars.

Trumpโ€™s declare โ€œis so physically impossible, you donโ€™t even really want to respond,โ€ Lund mentioned.

For one factor, the wildfires are within the hills, removed from the Pacific Ocean and from the man-made storage and distribution system that carries water from Californiaโ€™s wetter north to the drier, extra populated south.

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TRUMP: โ€œGovernor Jerry Brown must allow the Free Flow of the vast amounts of water coming from the North and foolishly being diverted into the Pacific Ocean. Can be used for fires, farming and everything else. Think of California with plenty of Water – Nice! Fast Federal govt. approvals.โ€ – tweet Aug. 6.

THE FACTS: Trump is elevating an previous dispute in California, the nationโ€™s high farm state: the competitors for water between agricultural and environmental teams, fishermen and others who need extra water for wildlife and habitat. But the dispute has little to do with firefighting.

Republican lawmakers in Californiaโ€™s agriculture-rich Central Valley complain the state and federal governments permit an excessive amount of of the stateโ€™s rainfall and snow soften to move naturally by rivers and into the Pacific Ocean, as a substitute of being diverted for irrigation.

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VETERANS

TRUMP: โ€œThe Democrats are obstructionists. The only thing they do well, theyโ€™re lousy politicians, they have horrible, stupid policies. You know, letโ€™s get rid of law enforcement, letโ€™s get rid of our military, letโ€™s not take care of our vets – all of these things. โ€ฆ Theyโ€™ll do anything they can really to obstruct or resist.โ€ – remarks Aug. four at Ohio rally.

THE FACTS: On the opposite, with reference to veteransโ€™ points, each main invoice signed into legislation by Trump has handed with sturdy help from each Republicans and Democrats. In one case, House Democrats did block an emergency funding invoice for the Veterans Choice private-sector program after veterans teams complained that it centered on an excessive amount of personal care as a substitute of core VA packages. The Democratsโ€™ dissent resulted in extra funding for each personal care and VA packages within the revised invoice.

More just lately, Robert Wilkie was confirmed by the Senate to function VA secretary on an 86-9 vote. It was a second of sturdy bipartisan show in comparison with the partisan discord over different Trump nominees.

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Associated Press writers Chad Day, Eric Tucker, Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Chloe Kim and Ellen Knickmeyer contributed to this report.

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

Follow @APFactExamine on Twitter: https://twitter.com/APFactCheck

Copyright ยฉ 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

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