WASHINGTON (AP) — President Trump is spreading misinformation about the CIA officer who blew the whistle on his dealings with Ukraine, and a wide range of other topics, according to Associated Press fact-checkers.
With Democrats expected to hold public hearings this month on his impeachment, Trump is calling for release of the name of the whistleblower, who accused Trump of pressing for a Ukrainian investigation of Democratic rival Joe Biden. Trump insists the whistleblower's allegations are all false.
That's incorrect. Much of the whistleblower's claims have been corroborated and the inspector general for the intelligence community found the complaint to be "credible."
Recounting a U.S. military raid in Syria, Trump told a tale of the Islamic State leader "whimpering" and "crying" in the last moments before his death. His own military leaders can't confirm those details.
The statements came in a week of exaggerated boasts and fabrication in which the Trump campaign falsely asserted he had cut illegal immigration by half and Trump said that war-torn Afghanistan was safer than Chicago.
Here’s a review:
TRUMP: "The Whistleblower got it sooo wrong." — tweet Sunday
TRUMP: "The whistleblower gave a very inaccurate report about my phone call. ... The whistleblower should be revealed because the whistleblower gave false stories." — remarks Sunday to reporters
THE FACTS: The CIA officer's accusations about improper conduct by Trump in his dealings with Ukraine have not been shown to be incorrect. Several key details have been corroborated by people with firsthand knowledge of the events who have appeared on Capitol Hill.
For example, the White House account of the July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky showed that the whistleblower had accurately summarized the conversation, as relayed by unidentified U.S. officials, in the complaint sent to the acting director of national intelligence.
TRUMP: "My phone call was perfecto, it was totally appropriate." — remarks Sunday to reporters
THE FACTS: Trump's argument that his conduct in the phone call was by the book is hard to sustain.
In his phone call, Trump told Zelensky "I would like for you to do us a favor, though" and investigate Biden, his son Hunter and Democrats going back to the 2016 U.S. election. Diplomat William Taylor testified in October that Trump directly linked his request for that favor to military aid that he had abruptly suspended to Ukraine.
Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, who listened to the call, was so concerned that he rushed to one of the lawyers for the National Security Council to alert them.
As for the call being "perfect," it was worrisome enough so that White House lawyers moved a rough transcript of it to a highly secure system where fewer officials would have access to it than is normally the case for conversations between Trump and world leaders.
TRUMP, on ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi: "He died whimpering and crying." —interview Thursday with Britain's LBC Radio
TRUMP: "He died after running into a dead-end tunnel, whimpering and crying and screaming all the way. ... He died like a dog; he died like a coward. He was whimpering, screaming, and crying." — news conference on Oct. 27
THE FACTS: His top military leaders don't know what Trump is talking about.