US & Canada

Reality Check: Seven Trump claims fact-checked

Donald Trump making his speech Image copyright AFP

President Trump's 80-minute speech covered everything from Islamic State to the Empire State. So what did he get right and wrong?

1. 'Since the election, we have created 2.4 million new jobs, including 200,000 new jobs in manufacturing alone'

Counting the figures from November 2016 onwards (Mr Trump won on 8 November and took office on 20 January), the US economy has added 2.37m jobs.

According to the Bureau for Labor Statistics, 196,000 manufacturing jobs were added in 2017.

The growth in jobs began before Mr Trump took office. The US economy hasn't had a monthly loss of jobs since September 2010.

2. 'African-American unemployment stands at the lowest rate ever recorded, and Hispanic American unemployment has also reached the lowest levels in history'

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has measured black or African American unemployment since 1972.

The rate in December was 6.8% - the lowest ever (the peak was over 20% in 1982/83).

The BLS has also measured Hispanic or Latino unemployment since 1973. It too is at a record low - 4.9%.

Both rates remain above the figures for white (3.7%) and Asian (2.5%) unemployment.

And, in general, the rates mirror the fall in unemployment overall - which began under President Obama.

3. 'We enacted the biggest tax cuts and reform in American history'

Before Christmas, corporation tax was reduced from 35 to 21%.

Individual taxes were also cut for all groups (see image). But are they the biggest cuts in American history?

The fact-checking site Politifact says not.

Using Treasury statistics, it says at least three tax cuts - passed in 2013 and 2010 under President Obama, and in 1981 under President Reagan - were bigger in dollar terms.

In terms of percentage of GDP, six other tax bills were forecast to have a bigger impact.

4. 'Since we passed tax cuts, roughly three million workers have already gotten tax cut bonuses - many of them thousands of dollars per worker'

After the corporation tax cut was announced, a number of firms announced bonuses for staff.

For example: Disney announced a one-time bonus of $1000 for 125,000 staff. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said 60,000 employees would get an extra $2,000.

The lobbying group Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) - which campaigns for simpler and lower taxes - has kept a tally of all bonuses.

It says 285 firms have announced pay raises, bonuses or other improved benefits - which the firms attribute to the tax cuts. ATR says at least three million workers will benefit.

It's difficult to say how companies would have acted without the tax cuts - and how many are crediting the Republicans for something they already planned.

5. 'We have eliminated more regulations in our first year than any administration in history'

According to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, the Trump administration has withdrawn or delayed 1,579 regulations (of those, 635 were withdrawn entirely).

A year ago, Mr Trump signed an Executive Order that said for every regulation created, two must be withdrawn.

In December, he said that - in fact - 22 regulations had been eliminated for every one created.

Comparable records only go back to 1995.

The Washington Post said that, in their first year in office, George W Bush eliminated 181 regulations, while Barack Obama eliminated 156.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Syrian Democratic Forces after Raqqa was liberated from the Islamic State militants

6. 'I'm proud to report that the coalition to defeat ISIS has liberated almost 100% of the territory once held by these killers in Iraq and Syria'

On 1 January, Lt Gen Paul E Funk II, commanding general of the US-led coalition against IS, said "more than 98% of the land once claimed by the terrorist group has been returned to the people".

However some of that territory has been recaptured by Syrian government forces, backed by Russia and Iran, a coalition spokesman subsequently told the BBC.

It's also important to note that IS was losing territory before President Trump took office.

The coalition was formed in September 2014. Last January, President Obama said IS had lost 40% of its territory in Iraq, and 10% in Syria.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A worker on the Empire State Building on 1 January, 1931

7. 'We built the Empire State Building in just one year'

According to the building's website, construction began on 17 March, 1930.

President Hoover officially opened the building on 1 May, 1931.

Four and half floors were added every week - and at least five workers were killed in total.

Image copyright Empics

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