***Third Presidential Debate Fact-Check Livewire***

Trump: LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 19: Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gestures speaks during the third U.S. presidential debate at the Thomas & Mack Center on October 19, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Tonight is the final debate ahead of Election Day on November 8. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty …
Chip Somodevilla, PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images

Welcome to the Breitbart News Presidential Debate Fact-Check Livewire.

As Republican and Democratic nominees Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton face-off in Las Vegas, Nevada, Wednesday evening for their third and final presidential debate, Breitbart will provide live fact-checks.

Stay with us throughout the evening as we update this livewire to correct the record.

Fact-Check: No, Planned Parenthood Does Not ‘Provide Cancer Screenings’

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton claimed in the third presidential debate in Las Vegas on Wednesday that Planned Parenthood “provides cancer screenings” and therefore should not be de-funded, in spite of controversy about abortion.


This is a repeated claim deployed in defense of Planned Parenthood, but it is not true, at least as regards breast cancer. 

As the left-leaning Washington Post’s fact-checker wrote in 2015:

When Democratic lawmakers or other supporters assert that Planned Parenthood “provides” mammograms, this is highly misleading language because it could be interpreted to mean that the group directly administers the X-rays. The group does not “provide” mammograms. Rather, the situation is similar to other clinics where patients are referred to a licensed facility that can provide biopsies, X-rays or other specialized services. It is slightly more accurate to say that women have “access” to mammograms via Planned Parenthood, though it’s still slippery language.

The Post awarded Three Pinnochios (out of four) to the claim that Planned Parenthood provides mammograms.

Planned Parenthood does offer Pap tests and HPV tests, which are screenings for cervical cancer.

So the claim is not completely false, but mostly so.

Fact-Check: Yes, Hillary Clinton Wants Open Borders

During the final presidential debate, Donald Trump stated: “Hillary wants to give amnesty. She wants to have open borders.” 

Fact-Check: True 

In a private, paid speech to a Brazilian bank on May 16, 2013, Clinton said: “My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders, some time in the future with energy that is as green and sustainable as we can get it, powering growth and opportunity for every person in the hemisphere.”

This secret speech was released as part of the Podesta emails obtained by Wikileaks. 

Furthermore, Clinton has worked tirelessly to claim otherwise in public, as Breitbart's Julia Hahn reported

The latest WikiLeaks revelation documenting Hillary Clinton's explicit support for "open borders" may pose unique challenges to her campaign, as it means that for months, Clinton's campaign has deliberately sought to mislead the American people about her position on immigration. Clinton's campaign website promoted material insisting that the "claim that Hillary Clinton supports open borders" is "false"-- even though, by Clinton's own admission, "open borders" is her "dream." Clinton’s new pushback against publicly labeling herself as for “open borders” while clearly championing open border policies is perhaps related to the fact that increasing immigration levels is not a popular policy. According to Pew, an overwhelming 83 percent of the American electorate overall would like to see immigration levels frozen or reduced. ...
  • Interestingly, these so-called “fact checks” rarely mention how many migrants would be imported into the country under a Hillary Clinton Presidency. While Bill Clinton has described our current immigration policy as one of "open borders," his wife has championed policies that would open our borders even further.
  • For example, the 2013 Gang of Eight bill Clinton supported would have tripled green card issuances—permanently resettling 33 million foreign nationals on green cards in the span of a single decade—and would have doubled foreign guest worker visas to compete for American jobs.
  • The 2006 Ted Kennedy immigration plan Clinton supported would have more than doubled legal immigration by increasing the number of family-based and employment-based visas.
  • Clinton’s refugee program, which she outlined in 2015, calls for a 550 percent increase the number of Syrian refugees admitted. If Clinton were to continue this policy throughout her presidency, the U.S. could potentially permanently resettle nearly one million Muslim migrants during the first term of her presidency alone—and all of their children born on American soil would be automatically awarded U.S. citizenship.
  • The Center for Immigration Studies' Steve Camarota has projected that, based on the minimal figures Clinton has put forth thus far, Clinton could add 10 million new immigrants to the U.S. during her first term alone – in addition to the 11 million illegal immigrants Clinton has said she plans to amnesty within her first 100 days in office.

Fact-Check: No, We Do Not Know Yet Whether Russia is Responsible for Wikileaks

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton evaded a question about her speech to a Brazilian bank advocating “open borders,” which was released by Wikileaks, by blaming Russia for the hack.

Fact-Check: HALF-TRUE

It is true that the Obama administration has blamed Russian hackers for Wikileaks. Russia, naturally, denies the charge (which it would certainly do, regardless).

The fact that the Obama administration has pointed the finger at Russia is not, as lawyers like to say, “dispositive.” The Centcom scandal showed that the Obama administration is fully prepared to alter intelligence — even battlefield reports — to deliver a politically convenient result. And there is nothing more convenient than to lay the embarrassment of Wikileaks at the feet of the Trump campaign. 

The New York Times, of all sources, wrote in July that it was not clear whether “Guccifer,” the hacker widely blamed for the leak of the Democratic National Committee’s emails, was working for Russia or not:

While WikiLeaks has not said how it obtained the emails, Guccifer 2.0 claimed in a blog post last month to have sent them to WikiLeaks.

American intelligence officials believe that Guccifer 2.0 is a front for the G.R.U., Russia’s military intelligence service, according to federal officials briefed on the investigation.

In blog posts, Twitter messages, and electronic chats with journalists, Guccifer 2.0 has insisted such skeptics are wrong.

Clinton took her claim further, claiming that Trump actively wanted Russia to conduct espionage against the United States. 

That part of the statement is false, and relies on a joke Trump made in July, in response to prodding by journalists, that he hoped the Russians would find Hillary Clinton’s missing emails, because no one else would.

So while it is reasonable to conclude that Russia might be responsible, it is wrong to conclude that with certainty, and certainly wrong to tie Russian hacking to Trump without any real evidence.

Fact-Check: Yes, Hillary Clinton Wants a 550% Increase in Syrian Refugees in U.S.

During Wednesday night's presidential debate, Republican nominee Donald Trump asserted that his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton wants a 550% increase in the number of Syrian refugees entering the United States.

Fact-check: TRUE

In response to a question from moderator Chris Wallace about a private speech Clinton gave in which she said she favored "open borders," Clinton condemned Wikileaks as an ally of Russia. Trump dismissed this as a distraction from the original question.

"She wants open borders... people are going to come in from Syria," he argued. "He wants 550% more people than Barack Obama and he has thousands and thousands of people and they have no idea where they come from."

The issue of what percentage of an increase in the number of Syrian refugees being granted asylum in the United States Clinton would prefer has been one of the most prominent issues regarding immigration in this campaign. The White House announced in August that the United States had admitted 10,000 Syrian refugees, the upper limit in the number acceptable to the Obama administration so far.

A month later, Clinton said in an interview on CBS that she believed that number to be far too low. "I would like to see us move from what is a good start with 10,000 to 65,000 and begin immediately to put into place the mechanisms for vetting the people that we would take in,” she said in September.

The website Politifact, checking Trump's claim that Clinton was seeking a 500% increase in the number of refugees from Syria, found the actual number based on her September statements to be 550%.

Fact-Check: Yes, ‘Hillary Clinton Wanted the Wall’

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said during the third presidential debate in Las Vegas on Wednesday that Hillary Clinton "wanted the wall" when she a U.S. senator from New York. 

Fact-Check: TRUE

In September 2006, then-Senator Hillary Clinton voted in favor of building a 700-mile wall along the Mexican border, for the purpose of stopping illegal immigrants from entering the United States.

Indeed, the Secure Fence Act of 2006's goal was to "help secure America’s borders to decrease illegal entry, drug trafficking, and security threats by building 700 miles (1,100 km) of physical barriers along the Mexico-United States border."

Clinton voted "yea" in support of this bill. 

In effort to justify her support for more border security, Clinton told the Council on Foreign Relations that "there isn’t any sensible approach except to do what we need to do simultaneously: you know, secure our borders with technology and personnel, physical barriers if necessary in some places."

Fact-Check: No, Hillary Clinton Does Not Support the 2nd Amendment

During the third presidential debate, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton responded to a question about Supreme Court and gun rights by saying, "I support the Second Amendment."

Fact-Check: FALSE

When Clinton made this statement she was responding to a question about the District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) decision: a decision dealing with the foundations of the Second Amendment; the very roots of what it protects.

In the Heller ruling, SCOTUS reaffirmed that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms. This decision has become a bulwark against leftists who have spent decades in academia, politics and journalism trying to persuade Americans that the Second Amendment protects a collective right. (If collective, the left could tie gun ownership to service in the militia and bar gun ownership for anyone save those who serve in the militia or today's military or police forces.)

So Heller is crucial. In fact, it is so crucial that it is not be a stretch to say the entire Second Amendment rests on it. Yet Hillary disagrees the Heller ruling. Her spokesman Josh Schwerin said Hillary believes Heller was "wrongly decided." 

So how can a woman who does not believe in an "individual" right to keep and bear arms support the Second Amendment? She can't.

Incidentally, Clinton made this point evident during the debate when she said her disagreement with the Heller decision was the way the SCOTUS applied the Second Amendment in that case. For those of you who may not know, Heller centered on Washington DC's gun ban--which was subsequently struck down via the SCOTUS decision. 

To oppose the application of the Second Amendment in Heller is to oppose the fact that a gun ban was overturned. That is not supporting the Second Amendment. 

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.

Fact-Check: No, People Who Work Full-Time Generally Don’t Live in Poverty

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton talked about raising the minimum wage because “people who work full time should not live in poverty.”


Certainly most would agree that full-time workers should not experience poverty, but the question is whether they do now, and whether raising the minimum wage would effectively address the problem.

“The majority of the people who live below the poverty level do not work,” noted the Center for Poverty Research at the University of California Davis, reviewing labor from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. One of the observations made in their report was that a large majority of working poor had “experienced at least one labor market problem” during the year - i.e. they were unemployed, or forced to work part-time.

Certainly some people who work full-time meet the definition of poverty - a definition that is politically elastic, since it is often calculated in a way that excludes the considerable value of state and federal subsidy programs. The poverty rate among working adults has been estimated at around 23 percent. A great deal depends on other factors, such as the age of the individual, whether they are raising a family, and where they live.

The question of whether raising the minimum wage reduces poverty is highly contested - there have been studies both for, and against, that conclusion. Even advocates concede that jobs are lost when minimum wages rise, and those losses tend to hit the very people who most need full-time work to pull themselves up from poverty. Critics of minimum wage increases point out that even those who keep their jobs are often forced to pay more for their essential needs, precisely because labor costs have increased - described as a “regressive hidden tax” - and those higher costs tend to hit poor families harder than affluent ones.

The situation simply is not as simple as “raise the minimum wage, and people will make more money.” Complex unintended consequences must be considered, and minimum wage increases should be measured against other, potentially more efficient and less costly, means of alleviating poverty.

Fact-Check: Yes, Hillary Clinton Will ‘Add a Penny to the Debt’ — Trillions

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said during the third presidential debate in Las Vegas on Wednesday that she "will not add a penny to the debt" if elected president. 

Fact-Check: FALSE

Indeed, Hillary Clinton's claim is not even close to true. 

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget predicts that under Clinton’s policies, the debt would increase by $9 trillion over a decade.

"Clinton’s plan would increase both spending and revenue," the Washington, D.C.-based independent non-profit's analyst said. "Under our preliminary updated central estimate, she would increase primary spending by $1.65 trillion over the next decade, including about $500 billion of spending on college education, $300 billion each on paid family leave and infrastructure, and significant new health-related spending." 

Fact-Check: Yes, Trump Did Mock the Appearance of Some of His Accusers

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton claimed that at the previous debate, Donald Trump mocked the appearance of some of the women who suddenly claimed to have been the target of his sexual advances.

Fact-Check: HALF-FALSE

Trump denied having said any of the comments she attributed to him at the last debate. That is correct: he did not say any of those things at the debate itself.

But he did crack jokes at their expense in subsequent speeches, in repartee with the audience.

In one speech, he said of a People writer who accused him: “Take a look, you take a look. Look at her, look at her words. You tell me, what you think. I don't think so. I don't think so.”

In another he mocked Clinton’s claim that he “stalked” her onstage at the second debate — by mocking her appearance: “She walks in front of me, you know?  And when she walked in front of me – believe me, I wasn't impressed.”

It should be noted that the Clintons also tried to dismiss the initial allegations about Monica Lewinsky in 1998 by mocking her appearance. Clinton adviser James Carville also infamously mocked Clinton accuser Paula Jones’ working-class origins: “Drag a hundred dollars through a trailer park and there's no telling what you'll find.”

Fact-Check: No, 33,000 Not Killed with Guns Each Year

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton claimed that "33,000 people a year...die from guns." 

Fact-Check: FALSE

This is a claim Clinton often makes to make gun violence appear to be raging out of control; to justify the government stepping in with more rules and regulations to keep the American people safe. 

However, a Fact-Check shows Clinton's claim is not only false, but is exaggerated by 66 percent. 

She is using figures from 2013, and reporting them in a way that distorts what really happened with guns that year. Clinton first began making this claim in November 2015, repeated it in April 2016, and has since repeated it again and again.

In April Breitbart News highlighted the method Clinton used to swell the numbers:

In 2013, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 11,208 firearm-related homicides in the United States. An additional 505 accidental firearm-related deaths occurred in the US–a figure that pales in comparison to the 38,851 deaths by accidental poisoning or the 30,208 deaths caused by falls. So Clinton and gun control proponents who think like her increase these figures by adding in suicides. In this way, 11,713 firearm-related deaths–homicides and accidental deaths–quickly become 32,888 “gun violence” deaths in 2013 and an impetus for gun control.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.

Fact-Check: No, President Barack Obama Did Not Cut the Deficit by Two-Thirds

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton praised President Obama’s economic performance, adding: “He has cut the deficit by two-thirds.”

Fact-Check: FALSE

This repeated Democratic canard relies on fraudulent accounting that only starts more than halfway through Obama’s first year in office, after the $862 billion stimulus, the massive omnibus spending bill (“porkulus”), and the deployment of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which was signed by Obama’s predecessor but for which he voted.

As Breitbart News noted when President Obama claimed in January to have cut the deficit by “almost three-quarters”:

This is pure fiction. Obama has doubled the national debt, and it’s not because he cut the deficit. Rather, he spent staggering amounts of money in his first months in office–which he assigns, dishonestly, to the previous fiscal year, under George W. Bush. He “cut” (i.e. spent more gradually) from that spending, but only under protest, after Republicans took the House in 2010.

The truth is that Obama vastly expanded the deficit in a doomed and ill-conceived experiment in Keynesian stimulus spending, much of which was wasted on priorities that helped Obama’s political supporters — especially the public sector unions — but did little for the economy.

Fact-Check: Yes, Hillary Clinton’s Foreign Policy Contributed to the Rise of the Islamic State

During Wednesday night's final 2016 presidential debate, Republican nominee Donald Trump repeatedly asserted that rival Hillary Clinton, in her capacity as secretary of state under President Barack Obama, "gave us ISIS."


"Look at her real record," Trump said. "Take a look at Syria, take a look at the migration, take a look at Libya, take a look at Iraq. She gave us ISIS because her and Obama created this huge vacuum and a small group came out of that huge vacuum."

Trump argued of Iraq, "we should have never gotten out the way they wanted to get out." He noted that the Islamic State was now present in "32 countries."

In 2014, The Long War Journal found that Islamic State operatives were active in 32 countries.

Military leaders and analysts have argued in favor of Trump's claim that the 2011 withdrawal from Iraq emboldened regional jihadist groups, first and foremost the Islamic State. The Islamic State only formally became the group it is today, however, after Clinton stepped down from the State Department.

“If we had stayed a little more engaged, I think maybe it might have been prevented," Army General Raymond T. Odierno, the former top U.S. military official in Iraq, said of the collapse of Iraq after 2011.

“There is consensus among military practitioners — traditionally, the last people in the world who want to go to war — that leaving Iraq was a mistake,” American Enterprise Institute analyst Michael Rubin has said of the situation.

The Islamic State did not become the formidable jihadist group it is known as today until long after Clinton's tenure heading the State Department. It became the entity it is known as today ("the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant") two months after Clinton departed, and two years after President Obama ordered a dramatic reduction in the U.S. presence in Iraq.

While the group has existed in some form since 2003, it did not sever from its parent organization Al Qaeda and establish a caliphate in Syria and Iraq until shortly after Clinton vacated her position in the State Department in early 2013.

In August 2013, the Washington Post referred to the still Al-Qaeda-affiliated jihadist group as "by no means the largest of the loosely aligned rebel organizations battling to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad," but one worth monitoring due to its prodigious growth in a short time. By February 2014 – a year after Clinton left office, Al Qaeda had severed ties with the group, condemning it.

Fact-Check: Yes, Many Islamic State Leaders Have Fled Mosul

During the third presidential debate, Donald Trump complained about telegraphing major military actions such as the invasion of Mosul for months, and said “these people have already left.”


Obviously, Trump didn’t mean ISIS has completely abandoned Mosul - he means the leadership had plenty of time to escape. U.S. military leaders seem to agree.

“We've got indications that leaders have left. A lot of foreign fighters we expect will stay because they're not gonna be able to exfiltrate as easily as some of the local fighters or the local leadership,” Major General Gary Volesky of the 101st Airborne told reporters in a Pentagon briefing from Baghdad on Wednesday.

Volesky said this is similar to what ISIS leadership has done in other cities, such as Ramadi and Fallujah - a fact the U.S. is reminding Islamic State jihadis of, to weaken their morale.

“We're telling Daesh that their leaders are abandoning them. We've seen the movement out of Mosul. Where they are going, I will leave that to our targeteers,” he said.

As for the big prize, ISIS “caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Volesky said it was not clear if he was in Mosul. A Kurdish official told the UK Express on Wednesday that the Kurds believe Baghdadi is still holed up somewhere in the city.

Fact-Check: No, Aleppo Has Not ‘Fallen’

During Wednesday night's presidential debate, Republican nominee Donald Trump refuted moderator Chris Wallace's assertion that Trump's claim that the Syrian city of Aleppo had "fallen."


Wallace corrected Trump, stating that Aleppo had not fallen to Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad and his Russian allies. Trump rejected that correction, stating once again that Aleppo had "fallen" and repeatedly asking Wallace of the city, "have you seen it?"

While Trump may have meant to use the term "fallen" to describe the state of affairs in the city – its crumbling buildings, near total lack of functional infrastructure, and a serious medical crisis as hospitals have become the targets of Russian airstrikes – politically, the rebels controlling Aleppo have not surrendered. Aleppo has not "fallen" to Assad.

The anti-Assad rebels fighting in the city had their latest chance to surrender earlier this week, when Russia and Damascus announced a short-term ceasefire to allow rebels who no longer want to fight to abandon the city.

"When we took up arms at the start of the revolution to defend our abandoned people we promised God that we would not lay them down until the downfall of this criminal regime," Syrian rebel militia leader Al-Farouk Abu Bakr said Tuesday in response to the ceasefire.

Another rebel leader, Zakaria Malahifji, put it more plainly: "he factions completely reject any exit - this is surrender."

Fact-Check: Yes, ObamaCare Made Medicare More Solvent, But Not By Much

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton claimed the Affordable Care Act has “extended the lifespan of the Medicare trust fund.”

Fact-Check: HALF TRUE

The Wall Street Journal noted in the summer of 2015 that the long-term outlook for Medicare (and Social Security) was “better, but still bleak.” According to the trustees, the long-term deficits of the program had been reduced slightly, but how much the ACA contributed was a matter of contention.

Health care costs were trending down before ObamaCare, a decline attributed by some to the softening economy.

Former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius claimed the ACA was strengthening Medicare in 2013, but the trustees actually said the amount of cost slowdown attributable to ObamaCare could not be specified. (This would, conversely, make it difficult to determine the effect on Medicare insolvency if ObamaCare is repealed, especially without knowing what would replace it.)

The hospital-insurance program, for example, was projected to run out of funds in 2017 when President Obama took office; it is now expected to be able to pay full benefits for the elderly and disabled through 2030.

“The hospital-insurance program is separate from other Medicare programs, which include outpatient care and prescription drugs. Those are covered by premiums and government spending, not a trust fund,” the WSJ noted.

When the 2016 report from the Medicare trustees was issued, the hospital insurance fund’s situation had gotten worse - it is now projected to exhaust its reserves by 2028.

Fact-Check: Yes, the Clinton Foundation Took Millions from Countries That ‘Treat Women Horribly’

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said during the third presidential debate that the Clinton Foundation accepted millions of dollars in donations from counties that "treat women horribly."

Fact-Check: TRUE

Trump, in fact, mentioned that the Clinton Foundation took money from Qatar and Saudi Arabia. 

Indeed, Saudi Arabia has donated up to $50 million to the Clinton Foundation, despite there horrid human rights. In fact, Hillary Clinton’s own Sate Department criticized Saudi Arabia for its "lack of equal rights for women and children" and said human trafficking and violence against women are "common" in that country. 

Qatar donated $1,000,000 to $5,000,000 to the Clinton Foundation despite Clinton being well aware of the country's horrific record of violence against women. 

Qatar, has "continuing human rights concerns," according to a 2012 report released by Hillary Clinton’s State Department. Those human rights restrictions include "freedom of religion … trafficking in persons … legal, institutional, and cultural discrimination against women limited their participation in society."

Fact-Check: No, the Clinton Foundation Did Not ‘Spend Ninety Percent’ of Money Donated on ‘Programs’

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said during the third presidential debate, "We at the Clinton Foundation spend ninety percent -- ninety percent -- of all the money that is donated on behalf of programs of people around the world and in our own country."

Fact-Check: FALSE

Indeed, Clinton's "ninety percent" claim is false according to her troubled charity's own tax filings.

Peter Schweizer, president of the Government Accountability Institute, Breitbart News Senior Editor-at-Large, and author of Clinton Cash said the Clinton Foundation has spent as little as six percent of its total income on actual charitable endeavors.

"If you actually look at the numbers of their filings and 990s, that’s what it indicates," Schweizer said last month in an interview with SiriusXM host Alex Marlow on Breitbart News Daily. "The Clinton Foundation will say, 'We assisted or facilitated in 100,000 kids getting immunizations.' Well, okay, what does that mean? And they don’t really tell you. They don’t really explain to you how it works."

"So the number is absolutely correct, that six percent goes to other charities," Schweizer continued. "The other 94 percent is in this stew of marketing, and management, and travel expenses, and sort of all these obscure things, that it’s really hard to dissect what is the end result of that 94 percent being spent."

What's more? Political analyst Sean Davis, the co-founder of The Federalist and a former adviser to Sen. Tom Coburn and Gov. Rick Perry, examined the Clinton Foundation’s 2013 tax filings and found that "Hillary Clinton’s non-profit spent more on office supplies and rent than it did on charitable grants." 

"The Clinton Foundation spent nearly $8.5 million–10 percent of all 2013 expenditures–on travel," Davis contends. "Nearly $4.8 million–5.6 percent of all expenditures–was spent on office supplies."

Fact-Check: Yes, Most of the Economic Gains Under Barack Obama ‘Have Gone to the Very Top’

During the third presidential debate, Hillary Clinton claimed that “most of the gains in the last years since the Great Recession have gone to the very top.”

Fact-Check: TRUE

This factoid is a hardy perennial on both Left and Right, with the latter sometimes invoking it to argue that President Obama has done a very poor job of combating “income inequality,” or that Obama’s presidency proves not even the most dedicated leftist can fix income inequality through redistributionist government policies.

Various estimates have held that the “top one percent” received 90 or 95 percent of the income gains during the Obama presidency. It should be noted, however, that the gains became more evenly spread over the last two years, as the job market began shaking off its paralysis.

There have been many challenges to the “Top one percent got most of the income gains” statistic over the years, including the argument that measuring income is not the most accurate way to determine economic inequality.

Also, the recovery of the stock market after the 2008 financial crisis was a major reason for these income benefits accruing to the rich, and a healthy stock market is often touted by supporters of President Obama as proof that his policies were working. It’s rather hypocritical for Democrats to attack the logical end result of something they’ve presented as an economic benefit: people who own stocks making a lot of money from the recovering stock market. Some of those same people lost a lot of money when it went down.

But Clinton portrayed these top earners as essentially criminals who must be punished. She certainly wasn’t blaming Obama’s policies for the situation:

We are going to go where the money is. Most of the gains in the last years since the Great Recession have gone to the very top. So we are going to have the wealthy pay their fair share. We're going to have corporations make a contribution greater than they are now to our country.

Yes, top earners indisputably received the lion’s share of income growth from the post-2008 recovery, but the reasons why are far more complicated than the purely predatory behavior Clinton implies.

Fact-Check: Yes, the Hillary Clinton Campaign Used Activists to Disrupt Trump Rallies

In answering a question about fitness for the presidency, Republican nominee Donald Trump claimed that the Hillary Clinton campaign paid protesters to “be violent” and to “cause fights.”


James O’Keefe’s recent video sting with Project Veritas revealed that contractors for the Hillary Clinton campaign used trained activists — in some cases paid, in other cases volunteers — to disrupt Donald Trump rallies. The activists were used to “cause fights,” as Trump said, with the goal of creating “anarchy” around the candidate. 

Trump went a bit too far in describing the tactic, however. He said:

Just like if you look at what came out today on the clips where I was wondering what happened with my rally in Chicago and other rallies where we had such violence? She's the one and Obama that caused the violence. They hired people -- they paid them $1,500, and they're on tape saying be violent, cause fights, do bad things.


And I'll tell you what, in particular in Chicago, people were hurt and people could have been killed in that riot. 

It is important to note that the activists were not told to “be violent,” but rather to incite violence. And the figure of $1,500 appears to refer to one case, not to the general tactic used.

Clinton’s defenders might claim she did not know anything about the tactics being used, but that defense does not suffice. The consultants who carried out the tactic, centered around Robert Creamer and his Democracy Partners organization, told O’Keefe’s undercover investigators that they had set up a “double-blind” system so that Clinton would not have to know directly about any particular action being taken on her behalf, but Creamer appeared to admit on video that Clinton had general knowledge about their activities.


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