Jul 24, 2019

Trump makes false claims on constitutional powers, "rigged" polls

President Trump addresses the Teen Student Action Summit. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Trump has been called out for making a series of false claims at the Teen Student Action Summit 2019 on Tuesday.

Details: The New York Times noted during his 80-minute speech Trump incorrectly claimed that unauthorized immigrants can vote and that the election systems in states like California are "rigged," without citing any evidence.

On the Russia investigation, Trump repeatedly insisted that former special counsel Robert Mueller's report found "no collusion, no obstruction."

  • Reality check: Per Axios' Zach Basu, Mueller did not make a ruling on obstruction of justice. Instead, he chose to set out evidence on both sides of the question.

On the Constitution, Trump claimed, "I have an Article II, where I have the right to do whatever I want as president."

  • Reality check: Article II grants the president "executive power;" it does not permit total power for a commander in chief, as the Washington Post points out.

Why it matters: The Washington Post's Fact Checker found Trump made 8,158 false or misleading claims in his first 2 years in office. It now estimates he's made 10,796 false or misleading claims in 869 days.

The big picture: The issue of immigration was a focal point of Trump's speech. As with his rally last week, he again went after the 4 Democratic congresswomen of color he targeted in his "go back" tweets, calling them names and attacking what he called the "radical left."

Go deeper: Trump's year of falsehoods

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The Trump claims that Robert Mueller rebutted in his testimony

Mueller testifies before the House Select Committee on Intelligence on July 24, 2019. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

In his testimony Wednesday, former special counsel Robert Mueller disputed 5 of President Trump's frequent claims about his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and the president's potential efforts to obstruct justice.

The big picture: Many of the claims Mueller knocked down were already refuted in his 450-page report, but Democrats were seeking to animate the special counsel's findings through Wednesday's high-stakes testimony. That was clear from the moment that Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) opened the hearing with his line of questioning.

Go deeperArrowJul 24, 2019

Trump calls obstruction a "phony crime" during "Hannity" interview

President Trump called obstruction a "phony crime," alleging without evidence that it was created to target him during an interview on Fox News' "Hannity" on Thursday — the president's first since former special counsel Robert Mueller's House testimony.

"They create this phony crime and then they say he obstructed. They said there was no collusion, but he obstructed. ... The crime was committed on the other side, and we'll find out about it."

Reality check: Mueller told the House Judiciary Commitee that his report does not exonerate Trump on the issue of obstruction, instead citing his office's adherence to the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel opinion that prevents a sitting president from being indicted. Mueller also told the committee that Trump could be charged after he leaves office.

Keep ReadingArrowJul 26, 2019

Mueller tells Congress his report did not exonerate Trump of obstruction

Just minutes into his back-to-back hearings on Capitol Hill, former special counsel Robert Mueller told the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that his report did not exonerate President Trump of obstruction of justice.

The big picture: Just a half-hour before the hearing began, Trump tweeted, "NO COLLUSION, NO OBSTRUCTION!" Mueller had previously stated at a press conference in May that he "would have said" if his office was confident the president did not commit a crime.

Go deeperArrowJul 24, 2019