The address lasted over one hour, and was laced with a defensive tone, bordering on rage, as the 70-year-old businessman went to great lengths to expose America’s weaknesses and why his presidency would be an ultimate solution in restoring strength.
What remains unseen is a legitimate plan of action from the Trump administration that addresses education, economy, national security, and law enforcement’s tense relationship with minority communities. It’s currently a plan full of fluffed up rhetoric and fear-mongering.
During his speech, the presidential nominee threw out data in reference to undocumented migrants, Blacks, Hispanics, and the LGBTQ community. We figured since we had the time and the inclination, we’d cross check his figures.
Take a look to see if Trump’s promise holds true: “But here, at our convention, there will be no lies. We will honor the American people with the truth, and nothing else.”
Speech: “Nearly 180,000 illegal immigrants with criminal records, ordered deported from our country, are tonight roaming free to threaten peaceful citizens.
The number of new illegal immigrant families who have crossed the border so far this year already exceeds the entire total from 2015.”
Fact Check 1:
First off, it’s clear –Trump is explicitly referring to the deportation of people who migrated across the Southwestern border. Politifact, a project that cross references statements made by politicians and their interest groups, reports out of the 925,000 immigrants who received an order of deportation last year, 20 percent (185,000) had at least one criminal conviction.
What Trump omits is that many of these offenders were charged with nonviolent crimes. In essence, the quote needs context.
About 51,000 immigrant families have crossed the border within the last fiscal year, according to the latest Department of Homeland Security report, about 11,000 over the total for 2014’s fiscal year. While Trump is accurate regarding the number of immigrants crossing over, apprehension numbers have declined since the early 2000s.
Speech: “Nearly four in 10 African-American children are living in poverty, while 58 percent of African-American youth are not employed.”
Fact Check 2:
The Census Bureau says thirty-six percent of Blacks under the age of 18 were below the poverty line, while the unemployment rate for Black youth who are of working age (16-19) was 38.1 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor.
Speech: “2 million more Latinos are in poverty today than when President Obama took his oath of office less than eight years ago.”
Fact Check 3:
According to Census Bureau numbers, Trump’s account is largely true. About 11 million Hispanic-Americans were in poverty in 2008, compared to 13.1 million in 2014. However, NPR’s Danielle Kurtzleben said economists have difficulty placing the weight of the blame on President Obama. As they point out, Obama took office during the upswing of the great recession. According to overall poverty rates, the latest figure says the poverty rate stands at 14.8 percent, down from an uptick in 2010 of 15.1 percent.
Speech: “I will do everything in my power to protect our LGBTQ citizens from the violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology. Believe me.”
Fact Check 4:
The RNC runs on a platform that in recent years has ramped up transphobic, homophobic rhetoric. Trump, along with certain state and federal leaders in the GOP, have a large partition to cross before they can wholeheartedly pledge the above.
Just as a reminder, a large majority of the GOP promote the following: overturning Obergefell v. Hodges, the landmark Supreme Court decision that legalized gay marriage in all 50 states, and supporting discriminatory legislation that banned transgendered persons from public bathroom access.
Speech: “My opponent has called for a radical 550 percent increase in Syrian, think of this. Think of this, this is not believable but this is what’s happening. A 550 percent increase in Syrian refugees on top of existing massive refugee flows coming into our country already under the leadership of President Obama.
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.”
Fact Check 5:
Trump’s 550 percent increase is correct, according to Politifact. But according to NPR’s reporting, using numbers from the State Department, 1,682 Syrian refugees were admitted to the U.S. in 2015. Tamara Keith, NPR’s White House Correspondent, says the number is well under President Obama’s goal and the figure is far from “massive.”