In the second debate, Donald Trump answered the first question, ‘Are you both modeling positive and appropriate behaviors for today’s youth?’ by attacking Hillary Clinton and saying, “I will knock the hell out of ISIS. We are going to defeat ISIS. ISIS happened a number of years ago in a vacuum that was left because of bad judgment. And I will tell you, I will take care of ISIS.”
Here is what the presidential candidates offer as their plan to defeat ISIS, as provided by their respective campaigns:
Hillary Clinton Has A Plan To Defeat ISIS, Keep Americans Safe
“The threat we face from terrorism is real, urgent, and knows no boundaries. Hillary Clinton knows that ISIS cannot be contained, it must be defeated. Doing so takes more than empty talk and a handful of slogans. It takes a real plan, real experience, and real leadership. Donald Trump lacks all three. He won’t even say what his plan to defeat ISIS is,” the Hillary for America campaign stated.
Hillary Clinton has laid out a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS and keep Americans safe at home. She understands that it’s not enough just to take out specific groups or leaders – we must have a comprehensive strategy to win the long game against the global terrorist network and its ideology.
First, we need to protect our homeland, including by surging our intelligence to ensure law enforcement has the information they need to detect and disrupt plots, working with Silicon Valley to shut down terrorist propaganda and disrupt their recruitment efforts online, and keeping guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists. Hillary has also proposed establishing a “lone wolf” task force to identify and stop radicalized individuals who may or may not have contact and direction from any formal organization.
Second, we need to lash up with our allies to dismantle the global network that supplies money, arms, propaganda and fighters to the terrorists. This means targeted efforts to root out ISIS hubs and affiliates and preventing terrorist organizations from establishing hubs elsewhere, choking off the networks that facilitate their growth and expansion.
Third, we have to take the terrorists plotting against us off the battlefield. Hillary was in the Situation Room as we set out a strategy to eliminate dozens of seniors leaders of al-Qaeda. Now, we have to do the same thing to ISIS, starting with the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. And we need to take out ISIS’s strongholds in the Middle East by intensifying the coalition air campaign, supporting our partners on the ground, and pursuing diplomacy to end Syria’s civil war and close Iraq’s sectarian divide, because those conflicts are keeping ISIS alive.
As we do all of this, we cannot allow terrorists to intimidate us into abandoning our values or allowing us to be driven by fear to embrace policies that would actually make us less safe. Hillary knows that all communities need to be engaged in the fight against ISIS. As the Director of the FBI told Congress recently, anything that erodes trust with Muslim-Americans makes the job of law enforcement more difficult. American Muslims are on the front lines of efforts to combat radicalization, and we need to increase trust and cooperation with law enforcement. Since 9/11, law enforcement agencies have worked hard to build relationships with Muslim-American communities. They are the most likely to recognize the insidious effects of radicalization before it’s too late, and the best positioned to help us block it. Hillary knows we should be intensifying contacts in those communities, not scapegoating or isolating them. And as we engage in this fight, we will be stronger with our allies and partners standing with us, particularly in the Muslim world, as we cannot win this fight alone.
Donald Trump’s Plan to Defeat ISIS and Make America Safe Again
Mr. Trump’s Plan To Defeat ISIS Will:
Work with our Arab allies and friends in the Middle East so they can lead the fight against the Islamic State
Aggressively pursue joint and coalition military operations to crush and destroy ISIS, coordinate international cooperation to cutoff their funding, expand intelligence sharing, and engage in cyberwarfare to disrupt and disable their propaganda and recruiting
Defeat the ideology of radical Islamic terrorism, just as we did in order to win the Cold War.
New screening procedures and enforcement of our immigration laws will:
Temporarily suspend immigration from some of the most dangerous and volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.
Establish a Commission on Radical Islam to identify and explain to the American public the core convictions and beliefs of Radical Islam, to identify the warning signs of radicalization, and to expose the networks in our society that support radicalization.
Mr. Trump’s Plan To Make America Respected And Safe Again
Peace through strength will be at the center of our foreign policy. We will achieve a stable, peaceful world with less conflict and more common ground.
We will focus on advancing America’s core national interests, promote regional stability, and produce an easing of tensions in the world. We will work with Congress to fully repeal the defense sequester and submit a new budget to rebuild our depleted military.
The Trump plan will rebuild our military, enhance and improve intelligence and cyber capabilities
We will end the current strategy of nation-building and regime change.
And we will ensure our security procedures and refugee policy take into account the security of the American people.
Hillary Clinton Campaign:Trump’s ‘Secret’ Plan To Defeat ISIS Is No Plan At All
Donald Trump has consistently claimed that he has a “secret” plan to defeat ISIS. As it turns out, the secret is that Trump has no plan. Instead, foreign policy experts agree, the ideas Trump has mentioned are dangerous and wrongheaded–and his anti-Muslim rhetoric and proposals are recruiting tools for ISIS and other terror groups.
Trump spent more than a year claiming he had a secret, foolproof plan to defeat ISIS.
May 2015: “I know a way that would absolutely give us guaranteed victory. I’m going to say it, I guess I’ll be forced to say it at some time, but I hate to say it.”
June 2016: “Trump rebuffed Fox News host Greta Van Susteren’s attempts to extract the details of his ‘foolproof’ plan… ‘If I win, I don’t want the enemy to know what I’m doing. Unfortunately, I’ll probably have to tell at some point”
Turns out, there is no plan.
Trump: “Immediately after taking office, I will ask my generals to present to me a plan within 30 days to defeat and destroy ISIS.”
Politico:“But on Tuesday night, Trump suggested that he is still in need of a plan.”
Washington Post: “Now we know what Trump’s ‘foolproof’ and ‘absolute’ plan for defeating ISIS is — to ask the generals to come up with a plan, quickly.
And foreign policy experts agree: Trump is playing into ISIS’ hands.
Why Trump Is the Islamic State’s Dream Candidate: “It is deeply ironic and disturbing that the Islamic State’s dream candidate is posturing as the tough-on-terrorism candidate. If voters can’t see through Trump’s con game, terrorist groups like the Islamic State and al Qaeda will receive an unprecedented helping hand from America’s next president. Imagine what a conspiracy theorist — someone like Donald Trump — would make of that.”
Why ISIS is Rooting for Trump: “First, Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric plays into ISIS’ narrative of a bipolar world in which the West is at war with Islam. Second, ISIS hopes that Trump will radicalize Muslims in the United States and Europe and inspire them to commit lone-wolf attacks in their home countries. Third, ISIS supporters believe that Trump would be an unstable and irrational leader whose impulsive decision-making would weaken the United States.”
Why ISIS Supports Donald Trump: “Trump’s anti-Muslim proposals are likely to inspire and radicalize more violent jihadists in the U.S. and Europe… By demonizing Muslims, he feeds ISIS’s narrative that the U.S. is at war with Islam.”
From his wild exaggerations to dangerous falsehoods, Donald Trump continued his pattern of bold-faced lying to millions of viewers during the second Presidential Debate, in St. Louis, October 9 – that is when you could get him to put two sentences together, and not wander off or make utterly outrageous statements. Here are just some of the independent reviews of Trump’s untrue statements on topics including taxes, foreign policy, his own offensive comments and more, compiled by the Hillary for America campaign. We’ve already had a president who lacked any inclination to find out facts, and who lied us into a war.
Trump’s Lies About His Own Offensive Comments to Women:
AP: “Donald Trump, asked whether his early morning tweets directing people to check out a sex tape showed discipline, said: ‘It wasn’t ‘check out a sex tape.’’ THE FACTS: Wrong. Trump told his 12.2 million Twitter followers to check out a sex tape as he criticized a former Miss Universe.”
CNN: “Trump: I didn’t say ‘check out the sex tape’ VERDICT: FALSE”
FactCheck.org: “Trump said he never tweeted ‘check out a sex tape’ in the wee hours of the morning a few days after the first presidential debate. That’s false — he did.”
Huffington Post: “During Debate, Trump Denies Telling People To Check Out A Sex Tape On Twitter. Yeah, well, he literally directed people to check out a sex tape on Twitter.”
NPR: “[DJT:] I have great respect for women. Nobody has more respect for women that I do. [FACT CHECK:] Trump has had many occasions to make this claim over the course of the campaign, dating back to his tense interaction with Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly during the first Republican primary debate in Cleveland in August 2015, when Kelly reminded him of his history of offensive comments about women. Here is a partial list compiled by PBS.”
Politifact: “Trump said the tweet he sent out ‘wasn’t saying, ‘check out a sex tape’’ but rather to ‘just take a look at’ Machado’s background. That’s ridiculous. While Trump did urge his Twitter followers to check out Machado’s ‘past,’ he literally wrote ‘check out sex tape’ in the tweet. We rate his statement Pants on Fire!”
NPR: “[TRUMP:] No I didn’t say that at all. [FACT CHECK:] He did say that.The exact words were, ‘You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”” Trump’s Lies About the Economy & Taxes:
NPR: “[DJT:] We have no growth in this country. There is no growth. [FACT CHECKER:] The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an international economic organization, evaluated the U.S. economy this summer and concluded: ‘Seven years after the financial crisis, the US economy has rebounded: output has surpassed its pre-crisis peak by 10%, robust private-sector employment gains have sharply reduced unemployment, fiscal sustainability has been largely restored and corporate profits are high.’”
AP:“Trump wrong on Clinton tax claim… DONALD TRUMP: ‘She is raising your taxes, and I am lowering your taxes. …She’s raising everybody’s taxes massively.’ HILLARY CLINTON: ‘He would end up raising taxes on middle-class families’ THE FACTS: Clinton is not raising taxes on ‘everybody.’ Nearly all of Hillary Clinton’s proposed tax increases would affect the wealthiest 5 percent of Americans, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.”
Buzzfeed Reporter: “Trump says AGAIN that the US has the highest taxes in the world. That’s…untrue.”
FactCheck.org: “Trump said of Clinton’s plan, ‘She is raising everybody’s taxes massively.’ Everybody? No. Analyses by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center and the pro-business Tax Foundation both concluded that almost all of the tax increases proposed by Clinton would fall on the top 10 percent of taxpayers. Hardest hit would be the less than 0.1 percent of taxpayers who earn more than $5 million per year.”
Huffington Post: “Note To Trump: This Is How The Senate Works.Trump seems to misunderstand how the Senate works. He accused Clinton of not doing enough to get rid of the carried interest loophole when she was a senator. Clinton noted that she has been in favor of getting rid it for years.”
Huffington Post: “Trump Says He’ll Get Rid Of A Wall Street Loophole. His Tax Plan Says He Won’t.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump admitted that he used a $916 million loss declared on his 1995 tax returns to avoid paying federal income taxes. But he refused to say how many years he paid no income tax and simultaneously claimed to have paid a ‘tremendous’ amount of taxes. More questions than answers.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that growth is “down to 1 percent” and that taxes in the United States are the “highest in the world” Wrong.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said he would reduce the tax rate on business income to 15 percent. Not exactly.”
Washington Post: “Fact Check: IRS audit doesn’t prohibit Trump from releasing taxes”
Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s wrong on the U.S. being the highest taxed nation”
Trump’s Lies About The Affordable Care Act:
AP:“Trump overstates cost of Obama’s health plan. DONALD TRUMP: Obamacare ‘is going to be one of the biggest line items very shortly.’ THE FACTS: Trump vastly exaggerates the cost of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. The cost of the coverage expansion in Obama’s health care law is nowhere near what the government spends on Medicare and Medicaid, for example.”
FactCheck.org: “He also cherry-picked high proposed premium increases in the exchanges, and he said that the law should be replaced with ‘something absolutely much less expensive,’ when repealing the law is expected to increase federal deficits.”
FactCheck.org: “Finally, Trump said that the ACA is ‘unbelievably expensive for our country. … We have to repeal it and replace it with something absolutely much less expensive.’ But the CBO and Joint Committee on Taxation’s latest estimates on the impact of repealing the law find doing away with it would likely increase federal deficits over the 2016-2025 time period.”
Trump’s Lies About Hillary Clinton and Health Care:
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that Mrs. Clinton “wants to go to a single-payer plan” like the health care system in Canada. Untrue.”
NPR: “[DJT:] But she wants to go to single-payer. [FACT CHECKER:] Clinton does not support single-payer. She supports expanding Medicare to people 55 and over, but has not come out in support of a complete overhaul of the health system so that it would be more like Canada or many European health systems.”
Politifact: “Trump says Clinton ‘wants to go to a single-payer plan’ for health care. She has consistently said she would fight efforts to repeal Obamacare and would try to improve it. She said she wants a public option to be ‘possible’ but she has not called for moving to a system of only single payer. Clinton has not called for a single-payer plan. At times, she has praised the health care systems of other countries that have a single-payer plan, but she has not advocated that plan for the United States. We rate Trump’s claim False.”
AP:“Trump wrong on Clinton and health care. DONALD TRUMP: ‘She (Clinton) wants to go to a single-payer plan, which would be a disaster…she wants to go to single-payer, which means the government basically rules everything.’ THE FACTS: It’s Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders — not Clinton — who supports a Canada-style government-run health care system.”
Buzzfeed: “Trump falsely claims Clinton is proposing Canada-style healthcare system.”
FactCheck.org:“Trump used an old GOP scare tactic, wrongly claiming that Clinton wanted to implement a government-run, ‘single-payer,’ health care system, like Canada’s… Clinton supports making Medicare available to those over age 55, and creating a ‘public option,’ or a federal insurance plan, that would compete with private plans on the ACA exchanges. She hasn’t called for a single-payer system.”
Trump’s Lies About Immigration:
Buzzfeed: “Donald Trump claimed that the US doesn’t have borders. ‘We’re going to have borders on our country that we don’t have now,’ Trump said. But enforcement along the US-Mexico border has never been higher.There are currently about 21,000 agents patrolling more than 6,000 miles of the nation’s borders.”
CBS News: “TRUMP: ‘I understand the border. She doesn’t. She wants amnesty for everybody.’… It is not true that Clinton supports ‘amnesty for everybody,’ but she does want to make it easier for people who came here illegally to stay by passing legislation with a path to citizenship.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump says Mrs. Clinton wants “amnesty for everybody, come on in, come on over.” Not her position.”
NPR: “[DJT:] […] we are letting people into this country that are going to cause problems and crime like you’ve never seen. We’re also leading drugs for through our southern border at a record clip. At a record clip and it shouldn’t be allowed to happen. [FACT CHECKER:] Apprehensions at the Southwest border—a proxy for attempted crossings—have dropped by 79 percent from the peak in 2000. The Pew Research Center reports more Mexicans left the US than entered between 2009 and 2014.”
NPR: “[DJT:] ICE just endorsed me. They’ve never endorsed a presidential candidate. [FACT CHECKER:] The federal bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not make an endorsement. A union of immigration and customs officers voted to endorse Trump.”
Washington Post:“Trump overstates, by a lot, when he said Syrian refugees are coming to the United States by the “hundreds of thousands.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said we have hundreds of thousands of people pouring into the United States from places like Syria, and we have no idea who they are. Way off.”
Buzzfeed: “Trump’s said the US took in ‘tens of thousands’ of Syrian refugees.That is not accurate.”
CBS News: “Donald Trump says ‘tens of thousands’ of people from Syria are coming to the U.S. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘We are going to areas like Syria, where they’re coming in by the tens of thousands.’ FACT CHECK: False.”
Trump’s Lies About Muslims and Terrorism:
Buzzfeed: “Trump falsely claimed that Muslims in the United States are not reporting terror plots to the authorities. Trump cited San Bernardino where he said there were ‘bombs on the floor’ of the suspects’ apartment. There has never been any evidence that this was the case.”
CBS News: “Donald Trump claims that ‘many people’ saw bombs at the apartment of the San Bernardino shooters. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘We have to be sure that Muslims come in and report when they see something going on. When they see hatred going on, they have to report it. As an example: San Bernardino, many people saw the bombs all over the apartment of the two people that killed 14 and wounded many, many people.’ FACT CHECK: False. To this day, no one has said they’ve seen bombs in the apartment of the San Bernardino shooters’ apartment.”
CBS News: “Donald Trump says Hillary Clinton will not say the phrase ‘radical Islam.’ TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘When there’s a problem, you have to state what the problem is or at least say the name. She won’t say the name and President Obama won’t say the name.’ FACT CHECK: False. Clinton used the term in June during an interview on NBC News’ ‘Today Show.’”
CNN: “Trump: ‘Many people saw the bombs all over the apartment’ VERDICT: FALSE”
FactCheck.org: “In stressing that Muslims need to notify the police of wrongdoing in their communities, Trump claimed without evidence that ‘many people saw the bombs all over the apartment of the two people that killed 14 and wounded many, many people’ in San Bernardino last year.”
Huffington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s Claim That ‘Many People Saw The Bombs’ In San Bernardino Is False”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Mrs. Clinton has never used the phrase ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ Just flat wrong.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said ‘many people saw’ bombs all over the apartment of a couple who committed the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif. Not true.”
Politifact: “Trump said of Clinton, ‘These are radical Islamic terrorists and she won’t even mention the word.’ After the Orlando shooting, Clinton said she had no problem saying ‘radical Islamism’ which is similar but not the same as ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ She has also said that leaders should be careful not to demonize the religion of Islam, and that the United States needs specific strategies to fight ISIS. We rate this claim Mostly False.”
Huffington Post: “Don’t Believe Trump: No Syrian Refugees In The U.S. Have Been Linked To Terror”
Trump’s Lies About the Iraq War:
AP: “DONALD TRUMP: ‘I would not have had our troops in Iraq.’ Trump has repeatedly said in the campaign he opposed the Iraq War before it started. But the facts are clear: He did not.”
Buzzfeed: “Trump: ‘I was against the war in Iraq.’ No. He wasn’t.”
CBS News: “Donald Trump says he was against the war in Iraq, and that suggestions he was not have been debunked. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘I was against the war in Iraq,’ Trump said, as he did in the first debate with Clinton. ‘It has not been debunked.’ FACT CHECK: False and false.”
CNN: “Trump: ‘I would not have had our people in Iraq.’ VERDICT: FALSE”
CNN: “Trump: My opposition to the Iraq War “has not been debunked”VERDICT: FALSE”
FactCheck.org: “And finally Trump pins too much blame for the rise in ISIS — whose origin dates back to the Bush administration — on the troop withdrawal…”
NPR: “[DJT]: I was against the war in Iraq. [FACT CHECKER:] There is no evidence to support this claim.”
Trump’s Lies About Libya:
FactCheck.org:“Trump conveniently leaves out that he posted a YouTube video in February 2011 voicing support for U.S. intervention in Libya to remove Moammar Gadhafi from power, and that he told CNN in a 2007 interview that the U.S. should ‘declare victory [in Iraq] and leave … [T]his is a total catastrophe and you might as well get out now, because you just are wasting time.’”
FactCheck.org:“It’s been half a year, and Trump is still making the false claim that ‘ISIS has a good chunk’ of Libyan oil fields. We first flagged this statement in April, when an expert on Libya’s oil operations told us there’s no evidence that the Islamic State has control of any oil fields in that country.”
AP:“Trump wrong that IS is taking Libyan oil. DONALD TRUMP: ‘ISIS has a good chunk of their oil,’ referring to Libya. THE FACTS: Not quite. While it is true that the Islamic State group has targeted Libya’s oil fields and has aspired to grab some of the country’s oil resources, as it did in Syria, there is no evidence that it is reaping any revenue from Libyan oil. The prospect of the extremist group seizing Libyan oil is one reason the U.S. has conducted limited airstrikes against the Islamic State in Libya, where it now has a very small presence.”
FactCheck.org: “Trump said that ‘Ambassador [Chris] Stevens sent 600 requests for help’ before he was killed in an attack on the U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, in September 2012. But as the Washington Post Fact Checker reported, not all 600 came from Stevens, nor were they all requests for security upgrades, as it may have appeared to those watching or listening to the debate.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Clinton ignored 600 requests for increased security from J. Christopher Stevens, the ambassador to Libya, and only communicated with Sidney Blumenthal. Extremely misleading”
Washington Post: “THE FACT CHECKER | Trump made a ludicrous claimthat U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens made 600 requests for help before he perished in the attack on a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi.”
Huffington Post: “Clinton refused to answer Stevens’ calls for help, Trump claimed… However, repeated GOP-led investigations into the Benghazi incident have found no evidence to blame Clinton for the deaths of Stevens and three other Americans there in a 2012 attack.”
Lies About Iran:
CBS News: “Donald Trump claimed that the Iran nuclear deal meant the United States paid Iran $150 billion. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘When I look at the Iran deal and how bad it is for us, it’s a one-sided transaction where we’re giving back $150 billion dollars to a terrorist state.’ FACT CHECK: False.”
CNN: “Trump says US is giving $150 billion to Iran REALITY CHECK: FALSE”
Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s claim that Iran got $150 billion from the United States. THE FACTS: Trump always makes it sound like this is U.S. taxpayer money — and he always uses a too-high estimate.”
Trump’s Lies About Syria:
Buzzfeed:“Trump falsely declared that ‘Aleppo has already fallen.’”
Huffington Post: “Meanwhile, he added, only Assad’s coalition is fighting ISIS.In fact, Assad and his allies have focused on targeting civilians opposed to his rule and rebels who remain embedded among them ― allowing extremist militants to spread for years and control much of the country.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump accused Mrs. Clinton of being there for President Obama’s “line in the sand” in Syria. She said she wasn’t. Trump is wrong.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Syria, Russia and Iran are fighting the Islamic State. Mostly misleading.”
NPR: “[DJT:] I think that it basically has fallen. OK? It basically has fallen. [FACT CHECKER:] Aleppo has not fallen to the Syrian government.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that the United States signed a “peace treaty” to bring an end to the civil war in Syria. Not even close.”
Trump’s Lies About Russia:
Huffington Post: “Trump said he has no special ties to Russia, despite his campaign’s multiple ties to the country’s business and his stated admiration for Russian leader Vladimir Putin.”
NPR: “[TRUMP:] I don’t deal there and no businesses there have no loans from Russia. [FACT CHECKER:] Trump may not have current business ties with Russia, but he has in fact tried to engage his business interests with Russia since the 1980’s.”
Buzzfeed Reporter: “Trump just said ‘we don’t know if it is the Russians doing the hacking.’ Ummm… no.”
NPR: [DJT:] But I notice anytime anything wrong happens they like to say the Russians we don’t know if it’s Russian. [FACT CHECKER:] The U.S. intelligence community and Department of Homeland Security said Friday that Russia is behind this year’s campaign of hacks and the release of information related to the 2016 campaign.”
New York Times: “Mr. Trump said “maybe there is no hacking,” in response to Mrs. Clinton’s claim that Russians are engaged in an unprecedented effort to influence the election — on Mr. Trump’s behalf. Hacking is endemic.”
Trump’s Lies About Clinton’s Emails:
FactCheck.org: “Trump twisted the facts when he directly addressed Clinton about her use of a private email system while secretary of state. ‘You get a subpoena and after getting the subpoena you delete 33,000 emails. And then you acid wash them — or bleach them, as you would say — a very expensive process,’ Trump said…. there is no evidence that Clinton knew that the emails were deleted after the subpoena was issued.”
Trump’s Lies About Birtherism:
FactCheck.org:“Trump is wrong about Patti Solis Doyle, Clinton’s 2008 campaign manager. Solis Doyle has said that a ‘rogue volunteer coordinator’ in Iowa was immediately fired when the campaign found out that the aide forwarded an email promoting the birther conspiracy.”
FactCheck.org: “Trump: ‘Sidney Blumenthal — he’s another real winner that you have — and he’s the one that got this started’ As for Blumenthal, he has denied a claim made by McClatchy’s former bureau chief James Asher that Blumenthal, a senior adviser to Clinton’s 2008 campaign, encouraged McClatchy to chase the story of Obama’s birth… Other than that, there is no clear evidence to support Asher’s account.”
NPR: “[TRUMP:] Well, you owe the president an apology because, as you know very well, your campaign Sidney Blumenthal, he’s another real winner that you have. And he’s the one who got this started along with your campaign manager and they were on television just two weeks ago he was saying likely that. [FACT CHECKER:] We have fact-checked Trump’s birther claims previously (several times) online and on air. […] As we noted, ‘There’s a big difference between what fringe supporters of Clinton said at the time, who were disavowed by the candidate, and the campaign Trump himself undertook in the subsequent years.’”
The primary “appeal” of Donald Trump’s candidacy, we are told, is that he is a businessman, not a politician, that he has created jobs, whereas Hillary Clinton is a “politician” who has never created a single job or met a payroll. Donald Trump is the outsider, the change agent, versus the insider, while Hillary Clinton is “the Establishment” because she has spent 30 years as a public servant.
Setting aside the fact that Trump is the worst caricature of a Businessman, who, records now show, has built up the fortune he inherited by exploiting others, by lying and cheating, and the fact that Hillary Clinton, while she has spent her life in public service working to better the lives of others, has only briefly (as a US Senator and in her campaign for the presidency been a politician, there is a difference between public service and politics, and between business and government.
Trump says that because he is such a brilliant businessman, he will be the best “jobs creator God ever made.” He promises to bring back the manufacturing jobs that were lost 20 years ago, and says he will restore jobs in the coal mines, oil rigs and steel mills. How? He says he will tear up trade agreements (that will only start a trade war as countries retaliate by imposing tariffs on American goods, which will damage our exports which has been rising); tax goods brought in by an American company (even if he could do that, it would only be passed on to consumers in higher prices), eliminate corporate taxes (the biggest, most profitable companies don’t pay any tax anyway, and no business pays the “nominal” 35% tax rate), reducing taxes on the wealthiest Americans, like Trump (who we find pays zero or less than the average janitor so one wonders why there is any compelling need to go to a flat tax of 15% which will harm middle class people the most), and finally, eliminate the estate tax which would produce a $4 billion windfall for the Trump kids (so they have a real investment in Daddy becoming president) if Trump is not actually lying about his wealth (which Forbes estimates is more like $3.7 billion than the $10 billion he boasts). Trump’s fantastical promise of 4% annual growth in GDP that he pulls out of thin air would likely only spur crippling inflation.
This is, as Hillary Clinton so eloquently put it, “Trumped Up Trickle Down”, the George W. Bush economy on steroids, and we saw how that played out. And just like Bush Economics turned the Bill Clinton budget surplus into massive deficit and the $1 trillion for war he put on a national credit card exploded the national debt, economists have said that Trump’s economic plan would add $5 trillion to the debt, cost 3.5 million jobs, and exacerbate income inequality (because once again, all the tax advantages would flow to the top) and very likely plunge the US into another recession,
Hillary Clinton’s economic policy has a lot to do with economic justice and sustainable economic growth: paid parental leave, raising the federal minimum wage to $15, eliminating college debt, clawing back tax incentives from companies that use “inversion” to avoid taxes, promoting the rise of clean energy industry which already is creating more jobs than fossil fuel industry, easing the way for small businesses and entrepreneurs, investing $275 billion in infrastructure and billions more for medical research such as to combat Alzheimer’s disease, promoting universal pre-K and affordable child care, requiring pay parity for women. And yes, she pays for it by eliminating tax dodges corporations use and raising taxes on the wealthiest, “because they have made all the gains in the economy. And I think it’s time that the wealthy and corporations paid their fair share to support this country. Broad-based, inclusive growth is what we need in America, not more advantages for people at the very top.”
To which Trump replied, “Typical politician. All talk, no action. Sounds good, doesn’t work.”
Not work? These are policies that actually will create jobs – as they did during Bill Clinton’s administration, when he created 22 million jobs, largely by unleashing the new Internet industry, when incomes across the board were created, and by Barack Obama who already has created 15 million, despite coming into office enduring the worst recession since the Great Recession, produced the longest string of jobs growth in history and the fastest increase in wages in years and the most rapid decrease in poverty since 1968 (Johnson’s Great Society).
Yes, a politician does create jobs by fostering the policies that promote jobs-creation, and literally hiring the private contractors who build the roads, bridges, airports, water and communications systems. But a public servant does even more.
Economists who analyzed Hillary Clinton’s proposals found that it would likely create 10 million jobs, and that means with the increased revenue because of fairer tax policies and getting the wealthy and corporations to pay their fair share, the national debt would be reduced and prosperity would be more widely shared.
Hillary Clinton has spent her entire working life creating jobs. And if you look at what the State Department does – things like USAID – they are in the business of fostering economic development (jobs) around the world. During her tenure as Secretary of State, the US increased its exports by 30% and exports to China by 50%, and that contributed to the first increase in manufacturing jobs since the Clinton years. The Clinton Global Initiative which she served after leaving government, devised new methods of fostering public-private partnerships that have been applied by the Obama Administration in the Smart Cities program, Joining Forces (which promotes jobs for returning veterans and military families), in its Apprenticeship program, for example (I’m betting no one realizes these programs even exist), and would have done far, far more if the Republican Congress had not blocked legislation including the Infrastructure Bank and the American Jobs Program (it even has “jobs” in its name).
And there is a very great difference between being a businessman and a public servant. Donald Trump said it himself, to justify how “smart” he is to avoid paying taxes (which is probably why he is being audited):
He has said that he earned $650 million last year, but has boasted about paying zero taxes or avoiding paying taxes. “That makes me smart.”
“So if he’s paid zero, that means zero for troops, zero for vets, zero for schools or health,” Clinton replied. (This doesn’t sway Trump’s supporters because they see not paying taxes as stiffing the government – sticking it to the Establishment – and though they pretend to salute the flag, it is the “Don’t Tread on Me” one.)
And if he stiffed workers by refusing to pay them and challenging them to bring him to court, and stiffed investors by declaring bankruptcies, and called himself the “King of Debt,” he says,“Which our country should do, too.”
His idea to bring down the national debt? Not pay the interest on the obligations – force creditors to take less. That’s called default and it would forever crash the “full faith and credit of the United States” and the world economy.
“My obligation right now is to do well for myself, my family, my employees, for my companies. And that’s what I do.”
Ah ha, that’s it in a nutshell: a for-profit charter school can simply close up shop and leave the kids on the street, a public school has to take everyone regardless of their intellectual or physical ability; a for-private hospital just shuts down. A public servant has to consider all constituencies, with competing interests, not just self-interest, has a broader responsibility beyond a “fiduciary” responsibility (which is why corporations should be prohibited from paying into any political campaign and the Supreme Court Citizens United decision is so counter to democracy), and a longer view beyond the next quarter.
And the icing on the cake for would-be Donald Trumps? Elimination of regulation, overturning financial controls like Dodd-Frank, the EPA – an open invitation for a bankster free-for-all that will make the Bush Financial Crash look like peanuts. And those blue-collar working stiffs who are the “core” Trump supporters, who somehow imagine that Trump will make them billionaires, too? They will find themselves bilked, just like the Trump University chumps.
Being the chief executive of the United States, the head of a government of millions of workers, serving the interests of more than 300 million citizens (not just those who vote for you), working with partners from around the country and around the world, managing your board of directors (the Congress), is not like being CEO of a business with a single purpose – to make money for its owners – but does require professional skill, experience, expertise.
You wouldn’t hire a real estate developer to perform brain surgery on you, pilot your airplane, or plead for your life in court, would you?
But regardless of Businessman or Public Servant, it comes down to the individual’s own character, personality, temperament, skill, background, values and vision. It’s not that government is inherently bad, bloated and inefficient, or that businesses are inherently more productive, efficient and honest (if that were true, so many wouldn’t go bankrupt or be overcharging government by three and four times), but the workers we encounter at the hotel or country club, the factory workers who actually assemble the cars, and the people who get hired for government, and most importantly, the individual politicians we elect to office. As easy as it is for Trump to hurl stereotypes, slogans or jingoisms, people are not widgets that are interchangeable by label or category.
Responding to the New York Times report that Trump took advantage of his business failures in the 1990s to claim a $915 million lossin 1995 – enough to shield him from federal taxes for 18 years – his campaign stated, “The incredible skills Mr. Trump has shown in building his business are the skills we need to rebuild this country.”
Heaven forbid a President Trump treat the country as he has his businesses, his workers, his contractors, his investors.
Donald Trump did a mitzvah at the first (maybe only) presidential debate, which was held at Hofstra University on September 26. He brought his true self – not a studied, rehearsed character who could recite the positions scripted for him by Kellyanne Conway.
Instead, he dared to say in mixed company what he has been saying to his rabble, letting his words hang in the air alongside the reasonable, practical, solid policy solutions that Hillary Clinton has been proposing for more than a year.
He showed his true colors – and they were a nasty mishmash of clash that didn’t make sense.
He was incoherent, hysterical. With bloodshot eyes, sniffling, guzzling water (recalling his attacks on Marco Rubio) he looked reptilian (is he hiding a health issue, I wonder?).
Hillary Clinton had to be perfect – not a single inappropriate word or phrase or misplaced comma or gesture or glance. She had to strike just the perfect tone between showing that a woman could be powerful, professional and command authority, but also be “likable,” “pleasing.” And authentic – she elucidated the positions (on investing in infrastructure, keeping the nation safe, attacking ISIS) she has long advocated, and did it with passion, fully immersed in knowing all the parameters of the issues and seeing the long view. She had to show she could stand up to his attacks, send them back without appearing shrill or shrewish, and still present her own positive solutions that will help this country achieve “broad-based, inclusive growth” which, she said, “is what we need in America, not more advantages for people at the very top.” And do it in two minutes.
And she was perfect. Indeed, pundit Howard Feinman said it was like an elementary school teacher schooling an unruly child (yet another sexist remark – remember when they criticized Obama for being like a “college professor”?).
With every answer, Trump’s credibility was shot (as were his surrogates who declared him the winner after), he was exposed as the ridiculous Reality TV buffoon he is, and his Swift Boating tactic which Republicans have been exploiting since Bush v. Kerry, where he accuses his opponent of the very thing he is guilty of (ie. pay-to-play) boomeranged so perfectly when he accused Clinton of not having the “temperament,” judgment, or the “look” to be President.
“I think my strongest asset, maybe by far, is my temperament. I have a winning temperament. I know how to win. She does not have a…” he said, as the audience could not contain its snickering.
The ultimate was when he attacked Clinton on her stamina – a woman who even with pneumonia soldiered on the campaign trail and ran rings around him in the Commander-in-Chief forum – saying, “She doesn’t have the look. She doesn’t have the stamina. I said she doesn’t have the stamina. And I don’t believe she does have the stamina. To be president of this country, you need tremendous stamina” – which all at once reinforced his misogyny and ridiculousness, and exposed him to her withering rejoinder:
“Well, as soon as he travels to 112 countries and negotiates a peace deal, a cease-fire, a release of dissidents, an opening of new opportunities in nations around the world, or even spends 11 hours testifying in front of a congressional committee, he can talk to me about stamina,” she retorted.
On the other hand, she used his own words to attack him – he basically admitted he pays zero tax (“That makes me smart.”); that he did in fact stiff contractors (“Maybe he didn’t do a good job and I was unsatisfied with his work” …“But on occasion, four times, we used certain laws that are there. And when Secretary Clinton talks about people that didn’t get paid, first of all, they did get paid a lot, but taken advantage of the laws of the nation”) and turned it into an advertorial for his new hotel; that he did insult women (“Rosie O’Donnell deserved it”), or how his business was sued for housing discrimination (“We settled the suit with zero — with no admission of guilt. It was very easy to do.”).
Stop and frisk unconstitutional? (the answer he offered when asked about how to deal with rising racial tensions, especially with police shootings of unarmed black men). “No, you’re wrong. It went before a judge, who was a very against-police judge,” he said lamely.
She didn’t just parry his attacks – on her record as Secretary of State, in which he tried to blame her for everything that has gone wrong in the world for the past 30 years – she sent them boomeranging back, making a strong case for the Iran nuclear deal, for supporting NATO, for her plan to defeat ISIS, (the list goes on and on).
When he said, “The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear armament, nuclear weapons, not global warming, like you think and your — your president thinks,” he not only reminded voters that he is advocating countries like Japan, South Korea and Saudi Arabia get their own nuclear weapons), but that he has called climate change “a hoax” perpetrated by China (then lied that he hadn’t said that), and, finally, his pejorative use of “your” president, should have not only had progressives, anti-nuclear activists, environmentalists but also African-Americans throwing shoes at the TV (they surely screamed at the watch party at The Space in Westbury).
When he tried to attack her saying, “For 30 years, you’ve been doing it, and now you’re just starting to think of solutions,” he did her the favor of reminding people that she has had a stunning array of accomplishments on behalf of women, girls, families, working people (not to mention her work as Senator and Secretary of State) over the past 30 years – what has he accomplished for anyone but his own self interest, using bankruptcies, stiffing contractors, outsourcing jobs overseas, hiring undocumented workers.
And she managed to both present her argument for an economy that benefits for all, that invests in the middle class, in infrastructure, in education, and paying for it by having the wealthy and corporations pay their fair share, while at the same time throwing back the question of trust and transparency back on him using how he has failed to disclose his taxes, saying, “So if he’s paid zero, that means zero for troops, zero for vets, zero for schools or health. And I think probably he’s not all that enthusiastic about having the rest of our country see what the real reasons are, because it must be something really important, even terrible, that he’s trying to hide.”
I disagree with the pundits insistence that the debate did not provide enough “policy.” If they actually listened, they would have realized how Clinton managed to get in her policy points on a score of key issues (go back and read the transcript). This was a contest of Substance versus Nonsense.
And finally, when he tried to criticize her for not being on the campaign trail for a few days before the debate, she came back with the line that sums up this contest:
“I think Donald just criticized me for preparing for this debate. And, yes, I did. And you know what else I prepared for? I prepared to be president. And I think that’s a good thing.”
The Hillary for America campaign has issued 19 pages of Donald Trump’s lies, including the seven the Republican presidential candidate uses most often, as a guide to be used in the upcoming debate at Hofstra University, Long Island, on Monday, September 26.
The campaign is calling out the moderator, Lester Holt, of the first Presidential Election debate, as well as reporters and viewers to hold Trump to account.
For his part, Trump has warned the moderator will be “afraid” to attack Hillary Clinton and that if he is attacked, it is only proof that the system is “rigged” against him.
Expectations are so skewed that the fear is Trump only has to appear calm, even if ill-informed or shallow and lacking in any real understanding of policies, while Hillary Clinton has to be perfectly in command but also “attractive” and not too “studied” or scripted. In this, Hillary, a trail-blazer for women’s rights, will experience the same kind of gender-bias as when she became Arkansas’ First Lady and wanted to be known as Hillary Rodham, instead of Mrs. Clinton, and when in 1992, campaigning for her husband, Bill Clinton, she said she didn’t want to back cookies and stand by her man like Tammy Wynette.
A misplaced comma in a phrase could cost her the debate while the big question for Trump is whether he will be able to resist his verbal tick of calling her “Crooked” Hillary.
But Donald Trump’s, who has used his background as a Realty TV star as his strongest advantage in the campaign so far has won PolitiFact’s “Liar of the Year” award, after it rated 70 percent of his claims as “four Pinnochios” or “Pants on Fire.”
“Debates are about each candidate laying out their vision for America, not making things up. Donald Trump has shown a clear pattern of repeating provably false lies and hoping no one corrects him. Voters and viewers should keep track: any candidate who tells this many lies clearly can’t win the debate on the merits,” said HFA Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri.
The campaign issued a handy guide to Trump’s Seven Deadly Lies
1. FALSE: Trump opposed the Iraq War.
Washington Post:Trump: “I was totally against the war in Iraq.” // Four Pinocchios.”
As our timeline shows, Trump was not ‘totally’ against the Iraq War. Trump expressed lukewarm support the first time he was asked about it on Sept. 11, 2002, and was not clearly against it until he was quoted in the August 2004 Esquire cover story. (We even made a video documenting how this is a bogus claim.) Yet he repeatedly claims he opposed the war from the beginning — and thus, earns Four Pinocchios.”
FALSE: Trump opposed intervention in Libya.
Factcheck.org: Donald Trump on Libya, May 20 interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”: I would have stayed out of Libya.” // False.
“Trump’s claim that he ‘would have stayed out of Libya’ doesn’t square with his comments at the time. In February 2011, Trump, referring to Gadhafi, said that the U.S. should go into Libya ‘on a humanitarian basis’ and ‘knock this guy out very quickly, very surgically, very effectively and save the lives.’”
FALSE: Clinton supports open borders.
PolitiFact: Trump says Clinton wants to create ‘totally open borders.’ // False
“This is a huge distortion of Clinton’s proposals. Clinton has praised work already done to secure the border, and she said she supported a 2013 bill that would have invested billions more in border security while creating a path to citizenship for some undocumented immigrants. Her plan calls for protecting the border and targeting deportation to criminals and security threats.”
FALSE: Clinton wants to get rid of the Second Amendment.
ABC News: “Claim: Hillary Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment” // False.
“When Trump made this same claim earlier in the cycle, Politifact rated the claim false after finding no evidence of Clinton ever advocating for the abolishment of the Second Amendment… Bottom line: there’s no evidence to support Trump’s claim.
PolitiFact: “Donald Trump falsely claims Hillary Clinton ‘wants to abolish the 2nd Amendment,’” // False.
“We found no evidence of Clinton ever saying verbatim or suggesting explicitly that she wants to abolish the Second Amendment, and the bulk of Clinton’s comments suggest the opposite. She has repeatedly said she wants to protect the right to bear arms while enacting measures to prevent gun violence.”
“Absolutely not. It’s like saying that Ronald Reagan is the founder of al-Qaeda because the arms he sent to the mujahideen in Afghanistan after the Soviet invasion led to the creation of al-Qaeda. It’s a ludicrous claim.”
Washington Post: “Trump also claims Hillary Clinton was a “co-founder” of ISIS. Does that make sense?” // No.
“No. Within the administration, Clinton was one of the loudest forces for keeping a residual force in Iraq and for intervening in Syria, such as arming the rebels. So the criticism especially does not apply to her, since she advocated a more hawkish policy than was undertaken by Obama.”
FALSE: Clinton would allow 620,000 refugees into the U.S. with no vetting.
Washington Post: Trump: “This includes her plan to bring in 620,000 new refugees from Syria and that region over a short period of time.” // This is an “invented figure.”
“Trump has used this number before, but it stems from the unverified assumption that Clinton, who has called for 55,000 additional refugees from Syria, would continue at that pace for every year of her first term, on top of the Obama administration’s proposal for 100,000 refugees for fiscal year 2017. Trump then multiplies 155,000 times four years to reach 620,000 refugees. Clinton has never proposed such a “plan,” so this is an invented figure.”
Washington Post: Trump: “Under the Clinton plan, you’d be admitting hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Middle East with no system to vet them, or to prevent the radicalization of the children and their children.” // “It’s false…”
“Trump has repeatedly made this “hundreds of thousands” claim, usually referring to Syria, but it’s false… Trump also falsely claims there is “no system to vet” refugees. The process actually takes two more years, after vetting that starts with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and then continues with checks by U.S. intelligence and security agencies.”
FALSE: Trump will make Mexico pay for the wall.
NPR Fact Check: Trump: “And Mexico will pay for the wall. 100 percent.” // Mexican President “would not pay” for the wall.
“After his meeting with Donald Trump today, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto reiterated his insistence that Mexico would not pay for construction of a border wall. Peña Nieto said he made that clear to Trump during their meeting, although Trump told reporters that the issue of payment was not discussed. — Scott Horsley”
For the rest of the18 pages of Trump’s lies see The Briefing here.
“Our concern about Trump’s record of lying is what that means for how the debate unfolds and how viewers should judge,” Jennifer Palmieri said on a press call.
Trump should be expected to present his solutions – explain what his solutions are, demonstrate the knowledge and judgment. But so far, Trump has shown clear pattern of lying, expecting no one to correct them, she said.
“We have provided 19 pages of lies Trump has told during the campaign,” she said. Politifact has rated 70% of his claims as untrue; Factchecker gave him 47 ‘Four Pinnochios’ and rated 47 ‘Pants on Fire.’ He beat out all modern presidential candidates for fact checking – he was awarded the Lie of the Year and Trump was named the Liar of the Year.
“We think this warrants particular focus because his level of lying is unprecedented in American politics – reporters should keep this in mind,”
“Trump is a very unconventional, unusual, challenging candidate – recognize it’s true for press and moderators. It’s unprecedented in modern times to hold a conference to talk about special precautions because the opponent is a habitual liar, but we think it is necessary.
“When Trump has been chosen as Politifact’s Liar of the Year, for the moderator to let lies go unchallenged, gives Trump an unfair advantage. It is the role of moderator, particularly in this case, to call out those lies, and do so in real time.
“Clinton has a responsibility to defend herself – her own record. But given the historic record of how much Trump lies, it can’t be only on her to call him out if the moderator isn’t willing to stand up and challenge lies. We’ve provided 19 pages of them for helpful reference, plus the 7 he uses most often. This is unusual, but that’s the year we are in, that’s the campaign Trump is running, and it requires that kind of role for the moderator.”
Palmieri said that Trump would probably do what he could to “get under her skin,” but “good luck. We’ve all seen her endure tough questions – 11 hours during the Benghazi hearings. Trump may think he will be the first to get under her skin, but I doubt it.”
As for expectations of how Trump might perform, We had a dry run during the Commander-in-Chief forum which demonstrated that Trump could control his demeanor, and the concern is that will be the sole criteria for handing him the “win” in the debate.
“But maintaining demeanor and not becoming unhinged is not the standard for being considered President of the United States.” What should be the standard is that you demonstrate that you understand problems, have solutions, that you can explain them, that you have adequate knowledge, judgment to do the job “and that’s certainly what she is coming to the debate to do, and that’s what voters should judge Trump on as well.”
How Trump behaves and whether or not he maintains a calm demeanor is up to him, and we think that is within his power – I wouldn’t describe that as what we are pending a lot of time on. A good deal of our prep is thinking through the argument she would put forward that she would do – it is a useful exercise at debate as well as what closing arguments for last few weeks of campaign will be as well.