Articles from August, 2017

What do we know about the relationship between climate change and Hurricane Harvey?

Hurricane Harvey has dumped more water on the United States than any other weather event in history, and its costs are expected to be huge. The unprecedented storm has inevitably posed the question: What impact has climate change had on producing Hurricane Harvey? We took a look at what scientists had to say.

Fact-checking Trump’s tax speech in Missouri

President Donald Trump went to Missouri to relaunch his push for a major overhaul of America’s tax code.

Trump opens new chapter in America’s longest war

In his first major policy address, Donald Trump declared he would dramatically alter American strategy in Afghanistan, marking a new chapter in the longest war in U.S. history.

More than 13,000 fact-checks later, PolitiFact celebrates 10-year mark

"When we started PolitiFact, I had the hope, and I think Bill had the hope, that we would inspire other journalists to do more fact-checking," Holan said, "and that has absolutely come true."

Fact-checking President Donald Trump’s campaign rally in Phoenix

President Donald Trump defended his response to the violence in Charlottesville, Va., during a campaign rally in Phoenix, on Aug. 22, blaming the media for distorting or omitting his full comments.

Trump and pardoning Joe Arpaio: What to know about the process

President Donald Trump has said he’s considering a pardon for Joe Arpaio, the former sheriff of Maricopa County, Ariz. How unusual would that be?

Tracking Donald Trump's evolving positions on Afghanistan

When Donald Trump announced a way forward for the United States in Afghanistan, his decision to keep troops in the country was a sharp contrast to what he had said as a private citizen. It wasn’t, however, all that different from what he had said as a presidential candidate. Confused?

Donald Trump's Afghanistan address, fact-checked

President Donald Trump gave his first speech about the war in Afghanistan on Aug. 21, 2017.

Were militia groups in Charlottesville better equipped than Virginia State Police?

In response to violence in Charlottesville, Va., Gov. Terry McAuliffe praised law enforcement’s work, but also said that some demonstrators were better equipped than the State Police. Here's what we know.

Trump says Lindsey Graham ‘lied’ about Trump’s Charlottesville comments. Did he?

After being widely rebuked for his response to the deadly clashes in Charlottesville, Va., President Donald Trump fired back at one of his loudest critics, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.

The big picture: Where Obamacare stands, August 2017

The Republican failure to repeal Obamacare leaves a window for bipartisanship. And there isn't much time for Congress to act.

Trump takes aim at Amazon in barbed tweet. What are the facts?

Donald Trump took to Twitter to once again unload on Amazon and appeared to accuse the online retail giant of avoiding taxes, killing jobs and hurting American communities.

A look at the data on domestic terrorism and who’s behind it

A deadly attack in Charlottesville, Va., during a white nationalist rally and counterprotests brought attention to far-right terrorism and how it compares with radical Islamic terrorism. In light of the attack, here's an overview of the latest data available regarding domestic terrorism and its perpetrators.

Are there white nationalists in the White House?

The "Unite the Right" march in Charlottesville has brought the issue of white nationalism to the top of the nation’s agenda -- specifically, whether white nationalists are part of the White House staff.

In Context: President Donald Trump’s statement on ‘many sides’ in Charlottesville, Va.

President Donald Trump spoke on Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017, about violent protests between white nationalists and those opposing them in Charlottesville, Va. Subsequently, Trump was criticized for not speaking more forcefully against the white nationalists.

A Trump nuclear strike against North Korea: constitutional or not?

President Donald Trump’s threats against North Korea have raised the specter -- however small -- of nuclear war.  We looked into the legality of a first nuclear strike.

Does Mueller’s grand jury mean an indictment is imminent?

Special Counsel Robert Mueller has opened a grand jury in Washington, D.C., for his investigation into Russian election meddling and possible coordination by Trump campaign associates. What's the significance of this move?

Fact-checking Trump’s News of the Week video with Kayleigh McEnany

Trump’s "News of the Week" Facebook video touted success on the economy, immigration and veterans’ affairs. But the accuracy of the talking points was mixed.

Do low-skilled immigrants negatively impact wages of Americans?

White House policy adviser Stephen Miller at an Aug. 2 press briefing said that research has found a correlation between low-skilled immigration and declining wages for people in the United States. But the impact low-skilled immigrants have on wages has been widely debated for decades, here's an overview of conflicting conclusions.

Seth Rich: Separating fact and speculation

The 2016 shooting death of young Democratic party staffer Seth Rich has spurred the unfounded story that he, not the Russians, helped feed internal DNC emails to WikiLeaks. Now, a lawsuit claims Fox News used invented facts to keep that story alive. And the White House knew about it. We sift the facts from the guesswork. 

How does Trump White House turnover compare to Bush, Obama?

In the past six months, the Trump administration has seen the firing or resignation of its chief of staff, communications director, press secretary, FBI director, ethics director, national security adviser and more. But is the Trump turnover as rapid as it seems?

Fact-checking Donald Trump's rally in West Virginia with Gov. Jim Justice

President Donald Trump traveled to West Virginia on Aug. 3 to hold a campaign-style rally. Having promised "big news" earlier in the day, Trump invited West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice to the lectern, where Justice announced that he was changing his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican.

Watch the Aug. 3 PolitiFact Live: It's our 10th birthday!

PolitiFact Live for Aug. 3: We're celebrating a birthday. A big one.

3 times Trump team changed its story on Russia

President Donald Trump and members of his inner circle have made a number of statements to play down or outright denied his campaign’s contacts with Russia that were later proved false.

The president and the Boy Scouts: Was there really a phone call?

President Donald Trump surprised observers of the national Boy Scout Jamboree in West Virginia with a speech that sounded like one he’d given many times at campaign rallies.

10 years of fact-checking: It got easier -- and harder

We reflect on how fact-checking has changed over the course of a decade. 

In Context: Trump’s comments about treatment of suspects in police custody

President Donald Trump appeared to complain about suspects in police custody being handled too gently during a speech to law enforcement officials on Long Island, N.Y., on July 28.