Former President Donald Trump is expected to make “a very big announcement” on Nov. 15 at his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida.
Trump has long hinted that he will run again for president in 2024, and has disparaged potential rivals, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin. The full results of the 2022 midterm elections are still being counted, but some pundits have described Trump as the “big loser” of the midterms, suggesting he is to blame for weaker-than-expected results for Republicans.
PolitiFact has fact-checked Trump 960 times since 2011, as a businessman, presidential candidate and president. He is the most fact-checked politician on PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter. He has spread conspiracy theories, repeated baseless false claims and has been thrice “awarded” PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year.
His record on the Truth-O-Meter started with a Pants on Fire! ruling in February 2011 after claiming that people who went to school with then-President Barack Obama “never saw him.” This was part of Trump’s push of the “birther” conspiracy theory, which baselessly and falsely alleged Obama was not a U.S. citizen and therefore could not be president.
But the baseless claims and embrace of conspiracy theories didn’t end there.
Every year, PolitiFact editors select the falsehood that played the most significant role in undermining truth and name it the Lie of the Year.
In 2015, PolitiFact named Trump’s misstatements from the Republican primary campaign the collective Lie of the Year.
His track record for accuracy saw no improvement as president, as he earned the 2017 Lie of the Year distinction after claiming that Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election was a “made-up story.” In 2019, he again received Lie of the Year after claiming a whistleblower got his call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy “almost completely wrong,” despite evidence showing otherwise. He shared in the 2020 “award” for his downplay of the coronavirus threat and embrace of conspiracy theories about the virus.
In his presidency’s final weeks, Trump refused to accept electoral defeat and encouraged his supporters to go to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2021, to protest Congress’ certification of the 2020 presidential election results. The insurrection of the U.S. Capitol that day led to nine deaths, hundreds of prosecutions and a yearlong probe by a House committee. In 2021, the Lie of the Year award went to the campaign to whitewash the history of the Jan. 6 riot.
Trump has the worst record of any politician fact-checked by PolitiFact. Around 75% of Trump’s claims have landed on the bottom half of our rating scale — Mostly False, False and Pants on Fire! False is his most common rating, with 356 claims rated that way.
Trump is known for repeating debunked claims. He’s falsely claimed more than once that his administration enacted the “biggest tax cuts and reforms in American history.” He also reiterated baseless claims about Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., coming out in favor of MS-13 gang members.
PolitiFact checked fewer of Trump’s statements after he left elected office. But he has returned to the Truth-O-Meter most recently for false claims about fraud in the midterm elections, sowing doubt about votes in Arizona and Nevada, mail-in ballots, in-person voting in Michigan and the integrity of the 2020 election.
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