Fact-check: A look at claims Trump and Biden made at competing town halls – National

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US President Donald Trump and his Democratic rival Joe Biden clashed with curious voters on separate stages in different cities to replace the debate that was meant to be.

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Biden admits elements of US crime bill were “wrong” at town hall event

Here’s how some of Thursday night’s rhetoric compared to the facts of prime-time events and a campaign day:

Economy

TRUMP, answering questions in Miami on NBC: “We had the biggest economy in our country’s history. “

THE FACTS: The numbers show it wasn’t the best in US history.

Did the United States have the most jobs on record before the coronavirus pandemic? Of course, the population had increased. The 3.5% unemployment rate before the recession was at its lowest level in half a century, but the percentage of people working or looking for work was still below the high of 2000.

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Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Romer examined Trump’s record for economic growth this month. Growth under Trump was on average 2.48% per year before the pandemic, just above the 2.41% gains made during Barack Obama’s second term. In contrast, the economic expansion that began in 1982 under President Ronald Reagan averaged 4.2 percent per year.

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Coronavirus outbreak: Trump boasts that the United States had the largest economy in history before “the Chinese plague took hold”

Coronavirus outbreak: Trump boasts that the United States had the largest economy in history before “the Chinese plague took hold”

Election fraud

TRUMP: “When I see thousands of ballots thrown in a trash can and they have my name on it? I’m not happy with it. – from Miami.

THE FACTS: No one saw this. Unlike Trump’s repeated and baseless attacks on voting security, voter and voter fraud is extremely rare. No cases involving thousands of ballots thrown in the trash were reported in this election.

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Trump cited a case of military ballots marked for him being thrown in the trash in Pennsylvania as evidence of a possible conspiracy to steal the election. But he leaves out the details: County election officials say the seven ballots, along with two unopened ones, were accidentally thrown at an election office in a Republican-controlled county by a contract worker and authorities were quickly called.

REALITY CHECK: Reality Check: Trump Says Mailed Ballots Will Cause ‘Rigged Elections’

The Brennan Center for Justice ranked the risk of electoral fraud in 2017 between 0.00004% and 0.0009%, based on studies of past elections.

In the five states that regularly send ballots to all voters, there were no major cases of fraud or difficulty in counting votes.

criminality

BIDEN, responding to questions in Philadelphia on ABC: “The crime bill itself did not provide for mandatory sentences except for two things, there were three strikes and you are away, which j voted against in the crime bill. ”

THE FACTS: This is misleading. He underestimates the impact of the bill and the influence he exerted to get it passed.

Read more:

Biden admits elements of US crime bill were ‘wrong’ at town hall event

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Biden wrote and voted for this 1994 crime bill, which provided money for more prisons, expanded the use of the federal death penalty, and called for a mandatory life sentence for three-time violent offenders – the so-called three-strike arrangement.

He called the three-strike rule “wacko” at one point, even as he was helping draft the bill. Regardless of his reservations about certain provisions, he ultimately voted for legislation, which included the three-strike rule and came to be seen in the Black Lives era as a harsh and discriminatory tool of the justice system.

Troops

BIDEN in Philadelphia, on American troops in Afghanistan: “There are more people there now, by the way, than when I left, when we went to Afghanistan.

THE FACTS: No.

The United States now has approximately 5,000 troops in Afghanistan. The troop level did not drop below 8,400 troops before President Barack Obama left office. The United States had about 8,500 troops in Afghanistan during Trump’s first months in office.

The number of troops in Afghanistan reached 100,000 in 2010, before Obama came to power. Obama withdrew thousands of troops during his two terms, but he was unable to keep his promises to reduce the number of troops to 5,500 in the latter years of his presidency.

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US military ready to withdraw nearly half of troops in Afghanistan as part of ceasefire with the Taliban


US military ready to withdraw nearly half of troops in Afghanistan as part of ceasefire with Taliban

Coronavirus

TRUMP: “The other day they came out with a statement that 85% of people who wear masks get it so… that’s what I heard and that’s what I saw. – event in town hall in Miami.

TRUMP, on its rallies: “What I’m doing outside is a great thing. And if you look at these people, they really wear masks. I’ll tell you, I looked in Iowa last night – there were a lot, a lot of people wearing masks. But then you see the CDC release a statement that 85% of people wearing masks get it. – Interview with Fox Business.

TRUMP, looking at his crowd: “Look at all the masks. You know, they keep saying, “nobody wears a mask, wears the mask”. Although then they go out with things today. Have you seen CDC? That 85% of people wearing a mask get it, okay? – remarks at a daytime rally in Greenville, NC

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THE FACTS: He shakes up the study results, repeatedly. The study cited, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, did not find that 85% of mask wearers get COVID-19. If this were the case, the majority of Americans would be infected.

He found something quite different: that 85% of the small group of COVID-19 patients surveyed – around 150 on this issue – said they had worn a mask often or always around the time they were allegedly infected.


Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Senior health official in Tulsa says Trump rally likely' contributed 'to peak in COVID-19'







Coronavirus: Senior health official in Tulsa says Trump rally likely ‘contributed’ to peak in COVID-19


Coronavirus: Senior health official in Tulsa says Trump rally likely ‘contributed’ to peak in COVID-19

The group’s exposure to potentially infected people in the community varied. Most reported shopping or staying in a house with more than one person. But they were twice as likely to have eaten at a restaurant, where masks are set aside for the meal, than uninfected people in a control group.

Most studies have shown that wearing masks reduces transmission of the virus by blocking respiratory droplets. Several studies have also shown that masks can offer some protection to people who wear them.

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The results were published in a weekly CDC Morbidity and Mortality report, published last month.

TRUMP, reacting to news that people associated with the Biden campaign on a recent flight with Harris have tested positive for COVID-19: “We wish our best wishes, which is more than they did to me, but that’s OK.” – Greenville rally.

THE FACTS: This is wrong.

Hours after Trump announced early in the morning on October 2 that he had tested positive, both Biden and Harris sent their wishes for a speedy recovery via Twitter.


Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Jill Biden Wishes President Trump and First Lady a Full Recovery from COVID-19'







Coronavirus: Jill Biden wishes President Trump and the First Lady a full recovery from COVID-19


Coronavirus: Jill Biden wishes President Trump and the First Lady a full recovery from COVID-19

“Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a speedy recovery,” Biden wrote. “We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the President and his family.”

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Harris tweeted a similar message “wishing President Trump and the First Lady a full and speedy recovery.” We keep them in our thoughts, them and the entire Trump family.

The Biden campaign at the time also announced that it would stop running negative ads, with the candidate tweeting that “this cannot be a partisan moment” after the announcement that Trump would be going to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to treating her coronavirus infection. Biden’s camp picked up the publicity after Trump was released from Walter Reed.

At least three people linked to Biden’s campaign have tested positive for the coronavirus, leading the campaign to suspend in-person events for Harris until Monday.

© 2020 The Canadian Press



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