National News

Fact-Checking Trump’s Florida Rally

Posted October 31, 2018 11:57 p.m. EDT

WHAT TRUMP SAID:

“The embassy is already built. It’s already opened. And it came in $1 billion less than people thought.”

This is misleading.

Trump’s claim of a $1 billion price cut conflates the cost of an interim facility and a high estimate for the cost of opening a permanent U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. (Last December, he announced that he would move the embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv; it opened in May.)

For months, Trump has claimed that he reduced the price of a new embassy to $250,000 — the amount spent on making adjustments to an existing building in Jerusalem while a permanent embassy was being built. The State Department estimated that the new embassy itself will cost around $500 million.

It now appears that Trump’s $250,000 price tag for adjustments and enhancements to the temporary location was also incorrect. The State Department has awarded a contract to a Maryland company to upgrade the facility for more than $21 million.

WHAT TRUMP SAID:

“The Constitution does not — I say that to the media — does not require it — read it — because illegal aliens are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.”

This is disputed.

The legal theory advanced by Trump flies in the face of judicial and scholarly consensus, which holds that the 14th Amendment guarantees birthright citizenship. The Justice Department and several Supreme Court cases have also contradicted the president’s stance.

Other Claims

Trump made a number of other claims Wednesday that The New York Times has previously fact-checked:

— He falsely claimed to have passed the “biggest tax cut for working families.” (Several rank larger.)

— He falsely claimed that Democrats “want open borders, and they want to invite caravan after caravan into our country.” (Democrats support border security measures. There is no proof that they are behind the migrant caravan headed to the United States.)

— He misleadingly claimed the wall on the southwest border is “already being built.” (Construction has not begun.)

— He falsely claimed that the Medicare-for-all proposals “would destroy Medicare” for seniors. (The proposals would expand benefits and cut costs.)

— He claimed that Republicans will “always protect Americans with pre-existing conditions, always, always.” (Actions from his administration and Republican bills show otherwise.)

— He exaggerated when he claimed that lawmakers were unable to pass the Veterans Choice program “for 44 years.” (The program has existed since 2014, though he enacted changes this year.)