Trump went on national TV and lied to Americans about immigrants – ThinkProgress


President Trump on Tuesday night time delivered an deal with to the nation, warning of a supposed “disaster” on the U.S.-Mexico border that solely a wall may repair.

Early rreports advised Trump may use the deal with to declare a state of emergency on the border, although he averted addressing that matter straight.

As an alternative, in his deal with, broadcast stay on a number of networks, the president tried to persuade the American individuals — who largely have rejected the concept — of the necessity to assemble a southern border wall estimated to price greater than $21.6 billion, relying on supplies. Democrats have pointedly refused to offer funding for this wall, which led to a conflict on Capitol Hill final month and a subsequent authorities shutdown.

Hours forward of the speech, the Make America Nice Committee, Trump’s official PAC, additionally despatched out an e-mail fundraising off the speech, asking supporters to assist him “elevate $500,000 in ONE DAY.”

On Tuesday night time, Trump relied on the identical false and deceptive speaking factors which have lengthy been normal fare from his administration. His almost 10-minute speech paralleled a Division of Homeland Safety slideshow for congressional leaders launched earlier this month, outlining what it referred to as a “disaster” on the border.

That disaster, nevertheless, was largely created by the Trump administration itself. DHS insisted, for example, that extra undocumented immigrants had been crossing the border than ever. Official numbers don’t assist that declare.

Trump nonetheless seized on that false speaking level, together with a number of others Tuesday night time, to supply a fearmongering spiel in regards to the state of affairs on the border.

CLAIM: Extra undocumented persons are crossing the border than ever


Trump claimed Tuesday that there was an pressing want for a wall — one product of metal — to avert the huge inflow on the southern border.

“We’ve got requested extra brokers, immigration judges, and mattress house to course of the sharp rise in illegal migration fueled by our very robust economic system,” he mentioned.

For the reason that early 2000s, nevertheless, unlawful border crossings have dropped considerably, from roughly 1.6 million to simply 310,000 in 2017. Border crossings on the southwest border alone had been roughly 304,000, with the remaining three,600 and three,000 occurring on the coastal and northern borders, respectively, in keeping with U.S. Customs and Border Safety (CBP).

USA Right this moment notes chunk of that decline can really be attributed to home jobs drying up throughout the recession — which normally entice overseas employees — in addition to, extra lately, concern over Trump’s racist crackdowns on immigration extra broadly.

CLAIM: Criminals are pouring into the US, unabated


Each Trump and his administration have repeatedly used this explicit line of assault to claim that there’s a “disaster” on the border.

“Over time, 1000’s of Individuals have been brutally killed by those that illegally entered our nation and 1000’s extra lives shall be misplaced if we don’t act proper now,” Trump claimed Tuesday night time, earlier than rattling off an inventory of victims, full with grotesque descriptions of their deaths.

Moreover, in a fundraising email forward of his speech Tuesday, the president claimed boldly that “unlawful criminals [were] flooding our nation,” a model of his earlier declare that border officers in 2018 arrested “17,000 criminals making an attempt to get throughout the border.”

The Washington Put up famous that quantity was deceptive. Whereas CBP arrested roughly 16,831 individuals convicted of crimes between October 2017 and August 2018, 63 % had been detained at authorized ports of entry. Not all the convictions had been violent — the bulk, the truth is, had been for drunk driving or earlier makes an attempt at getting into the nation.

Roughly 600 of these stopped at varied entry factors in Fiscal Yr 2018 had been convicted of violent crimes, far decrease than Trump has advised.

Quite a few research have additionally proven immigrants as a bunch are far much less more likely to commit felony acts than U.S. residents. Within the final 12 months alone, 4 separate research advised there was no direct hyperlink between unlawful immigration and violent or non-violent crime charges during the last three a long time.

“There’s no wave of crime being dedicated by the immigrant neighborhood,” Houston Police Chief Artwork Acevedo advised NPR. “As a matter of truth, lots of the violent crime that we’re coping with is being dedicated by individuals which are born and raised proper right here in the US.”

CLAIM: We want a wall, as a result of gangs like MS-13 poses a dire risk to U.S. residents

FACT CHECK: Principally false

Trump has not shied away from linking immigrants and criminality previously. Particularly, he has advised — with no proof — that Mexican immigrants are largely rapists and drug sellers. On Tuesday, he claimed that harmful MS-13 gang members had been killing scores of harmless Individuals, summoning one younger lady’s tragic homicide in Maryland to argue in assist of a wall.

Like his different claims, the suggestion that MS-13 poses a direct and main risk to U.S. residents has little foundation in actuality. Whereas the Salvadoran avenue gang at present boasts between 40,000 and 70,000 members, Perception Crime explains, the bulk are concentrated in “largely city areas in Central America or places outdoors the area the place there’s a massive Central American diaspora.”

America has recognized quite a few MS-13 gang members inside the US as effectively, however the numbers are a lot slimmer — between eight,000 and 10,000, in keeping with the FBI. Meaning MS-13 makes up lower than 1 % of all U.S. gang membership.

Perception Crime notes that the gang has tried to claim extra affect inside prisons alongside the U.S. East Coast, with “emissaries in locations as distant as Boston who’re making an attempt to corral the rudimentary and undisciplined gang cliques.” Nonetheless, the general risk to common U.S. residents is minor in comparison with different violent teams or extremist organizations, comparable to these on the far-right, who’re much more widespread.

CLAIM: The wall will cease medicine from pouring into the nation


The Trump administration has a historical past of skewing the information on medicine in the US, to push the president’s border wall calls for. Tuesday was no totally different, with the president himself suggesting each in his fundraising e-mail and speech that medicine had been pouring into the nation throughout the border, “poisoning” harmless Individuals.

“Each week 300 of our residents are killed by heroin alone, 90 % of which floods throughout from our southern border,” Trump mentioned Tuesday night time.

That assertion, nevertheless, is deceptive — the uncooked numbers paint a a lot totally different image.

DHS officers claimed of their slide present final week, for instance, that 1.7 million kilos of narcotics had been seized by CBP brokers in Fiscal Yr 2018. These figures didn’t match up with the numbers on CBP’s web site, which confirmed a considerably decrease whole — 47,945 kilos of cocaine and 67,292 kilos of methamphetamine seized in FY18, versus DHS’ declare of 282,000 kilos of cocaine and 248,000 kilos of methamphetamine.

Whereas these numbers nonetheless may appear excessive, it’s necessary to notice the overwhelming majority of these medicine are being introduced into the US via authorized ports of entry — that means a wall would do nothing to gradual issues down.

CLAIM: Undocumented immigrants steal American jobs


Trump relied on quite a few tried and true anti-immigrant speaking factors Tuesday night time as effectively. Amongst these was the favored trope of the job-stealing immigrant.

“[Illegal immigration] strains public assets and drives down jobs and amongst these hardest hit are African-Individuals and Hispanic Individuals,” Trump claimed.

A 2017 report by the Brookings Establishment, a D.C.-based nonpartisan think-tank, contradicts that assertion. In keeping with the Brookings Senior Fellow Vanda Felbab-Brown, immigrants each documented and undocumented usually fill positions that U.S. residents refuse to take, moderately than “stealing” work Individuals discover fascinating.

“The affect of immigrant labor on the wages of native-born employees is low,” she wrote. “Immigrant labor does have some destructive results on the employment and wages of native-born highschool dropouts…and in addition on prior immigrants, as a result of all three teams compete for low-skilled jobs and the latest immigrants are sometimes prepared to work for lower than their competitors. Nonetheless, undocumented employees usually work the disagreeable, back-breaking jobs that native-born employees should not prepared to do.”

She added, “Fixing immigration isn’t about mass deportations of individuals however about making a authorized visa system for jobs Individuals don’t need.”

CLAIM: Hundreds of terrorists are coming into the nation via the U.S.-Mexico border


Whereas Trump didn’t point out this declare straight in his speech Tuesday night time, his administration tried to push the falsehood earlier within the week, and within the days main as much as it.

This declare has bounced round conservative circles for years, lately making its approach into DHS speaking factors. The White Home itself repeated the declare Friday, with Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders suggesting CBP had arrested almost four,000 suspected terrorists final 12 months alone.

The DHS speaking level, nevertheless is deceptive. As San Francisco Chronicle reporter Tal Kopan noted final week, the info DHS makes use of to justify this declare has by no means been supplied beforehand and applies largely to air journey.

The four,000 determine can be vastly overblown, as NBC Information reported Tuesday. In keeping with CBP information, fewer than 140 individuals cited on CBP’s Terrorist Screening Database had been stopped on the U.S. northern and southern borders between October 2017 and March 2018.

Ninety-one individuals had been stopped on the northern border throughout that point interval, 41 of them non-citizens or residents. Of the 41 individuals stopped on the southern border, 35 had been U.S. residents or lawful residents. Simply six had been categorised as “non-U.S. individuals.”

Former Obama administration nationwide safety official Ned Worth famous lots of these intercepted on the border had been stopped just because their names matched these on the Terrorist Screening Database.

“The variety of individuals on such lists ballooned within the years after 9/11, with some reviews indicating that a couple of million names had been related to suspected terrorist exercise. That’s why false-positives, together with within the case of crossings at our southern border, are commonplace,” he advised NBC Information.


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