Donald Trump said during the first presidential debate that crime went up in the city of Chicago under President Obama. The implication was that the president’s hometown was under serious threats. That is not true.
Trump said that “thousands and thousands,” then changed it to “4000 were killed in Chicago since the beginning of Obama [took office].” The man who many pundits call a “compulsive liar” holds up crime in Chicago crime as a slam against the president and by extension, Hillary Clinton.
Earlier Monday, he sent out a tweet calling crime “out of control” and “rapidly getting worse.”
Crime is out of control, and rapidly getting worse. Look what is going on in Chicago and our inner cities. Not good!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 12, 2016
Donald Trump sees himself as the “law and order campaign,” appealing to those who want someone to come in and take care of them. He does this by playing to and ramping up their fears.
— Official Team Trump (@TeamTrump) September 27, 2016
In a recent tweet, he hit three sources of his audience’s fear. He called attention to five Washington State killings “by a Middle-Eastern immigrant.” Then, he included the drug problems in Ohio, which he has blamed on illegal immigrants. Third, he jumped upon the North Carolina riots.
His implication was that African-American people would riot in the streets unless voters elected him as the law and order candidate. Trump is not appealing to African-American voters. Rather, he is trying to appeal to white middle-class voters.
Five people killed in Washington State by a Middle Eastern immigrant. Many people died this weekend in Ohio from drug overdoses. N.C. riots!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 26, 2016
Another Donald Trump tweet continued his fear-based campaign. It shows him surrounded by police saying, “To those who wear the badge we proudly stand beside you.” Even though he says that he will “protect ALL Americans,” a strong racial bias runs through his life, beginning when he was sued in the early ’70s for not renting to African-Americans.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 27, 2016
In spite of Trump’s attempts to come down on Chicago crime, his figures didn’t add up. In fact, crime is equivalent to what it was under George W. Bush’s presidency, and it has been declining steadily overall for the last 15 years.
This year has seen a sharp increase in shootings and homicides. But overall, violent crime decreased in Chicago. Even with that surge in homicides in 2016, Chicago has remained equal to that in George W. Bush’s later years as president.
Not only has crime decreased in Chicago, violent crime and homicides for large and medium cities across the country have declined. Statistics from the Congressional Research Service and the FBI show this trend.