Donald Trump's campaign has decided to play the law and order card like Richard Nixon did since the recent violence that has struck Minnesota, Louisiana and Dallas.
And he made spurious claims that crime is rising tremendously in America and only he can keep us safe. This is completely false.
During a speech on July, 11th, he said,
"We must discuss, as well, the ongoing catastrophe of crime in our inner cities. According to the Chicago Tribune, there has already been more than 2,000 shooting victims in Chicago this year alone. This epidemic of violence destroys lives, destroys communities, and destroys opportunity for young Americans. Violent crime has increased in cities across America. The New York Times described “a startling rise in murders, in our major cities."
Our inner cities have been left behind, and I am going to fight to make sure every citizen of this country has a safe home, safe school and safe community. We must maintain law and order at the highest level or we will cease to have a country. I am the law and order candidate."
In fact, as the Washington Post's Philip Bump writes, No, Donald Trump, crime is not ‘out of control’
This piggy-backs on Trump's announcement Monday that he is the "law and order candidate," drawing a direct comparison between his campaign and that of Richard Nixon in 1968. Crime is spiking, Trump argues, and he is the guy to guide our national ship through this storm.
But crime isn't out of control — particularly when you compare the country to 1968. Violent crime rates are higher now than they were then, but in the late 1960s, the country was seeing a sudden and dramatic surge in violent crime and murder. Between 1964 and 1968, the violent crime rate jumped from 190.6 incidents per 100,000 Americans to 298.4, an increase of over 50 percent. Between 2010 and 2014, the most recent period for which we have FBI data, the rate sank from 404.5 to 375.7.
Trump made similar remarks back in June, that Politifact immediately corrected,
But the line from Trump’s remarks that leapt out at us was this one: "Crime is rising." Our previous research has shown that’s not so. So we took a closer look.
During Trump's Monday speech he continued pouring it on.
"Not only am I the law and order candidate, but I am also the candidate of compassion. But you can't have true compassion without providing safety for the citizens of the United States. Every kid in America should be able to securely walk the streets in their own neighborhood. Everyone will be protected equally and treated justly, without prejudice. We will be tough, we will be smart, we will be fair – and we will protect all Americans. Without safety, we have nothing!"
Trump tried to woo African-Americans by alluding to police brutality without ever mentioning the police at all.
But the fact is, he's pulling crime statistics out of thin air and citing a few reports on specific cities to make the case that every city in America is a hotbed of violence.
That's a lie.