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Former President Donald Trump greets supporters before speaking at the Westside Conservative Breakfast, June 1, 2023, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP) Former President Donald Trump greets supporters before speaking at the Westside Conservative Breakfast, June 1, 2023, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP)

Former President Donald Trump greets supporters before speaking at the Westside Conservative Breakfast, June 1, 2023, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP)

Sofia Bliss-Carrascosa
By Sofia Bliss-Carrascosa June 9, 2023
Jeff Cercone
By Jeff Cercone June 9, 2023
Amy Sherman
By Amy Sherman June 9, 2023

After Donald Trump announced that he had been federally indicted over his handling of classified documents, he released a four-minute video declaring his innocence and rehashing false claims about his presidency.

Here’s a transcript of what Trump said, interrupted by our fact-checks of his false and misleading statements. There were other dubious statements that we won’t address because they could be considered opinions.


Very sadly, we're a nation in decline. And yet they go after a popular president, a president that got more votes than any sitting president in the history of our country by far, and did much better the second time in the election than the first. 

Fact-check: He’s recalling the vote tally correctly, but that doesn’t mean he won the 2020 election.Trump, with 74,216,728 votes in the 2020 election, received more votes than any sitting U.S. president, surpassing incumbent Barack Obama’s 2012 total of 65,899,660. Trump also received more votes than he did in 2016, when he amassed nearly 63 million votes. 

But Joe Biden received 81,268,777 votes in his 2020 victory and also won the Electoral College vote, 306 to 232.

And they go after him on a boxes hoax just like the Russia, Russia, Russia hoax and all of the others. It’s been going on for seven years. 

Fact-check: Trump often uses the word "hoax" to portray himself as a victim of injustice and to sow doubt among his supporters, experts have told us. But none of the things Trump describes here are hoaxes. The investigation into Trump’s handling of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago started when he refused to cooperate with the National Archives after leaving office, leading to an FBI search of his Florida home. 

Although special counsel Robert Mueller’s report of the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election didn’t conclude that Trump committed a crime, it clearly said it did not exonerate him. Special counsel John Durham, appointed by Trump administration Attorney General Bill Barr, concluded that the FBI moved too quickly to a full investigation based on unconfirmed intelligence reports. But he didn’t say the FBI shouldn’t have opened the investigation.

They can't stop because it's election interference at the highest level

Fact-check: This suggests that Biden and Democrats are targeting Trump to hurt him because he’s running for president. Biden and his spokespeople have generally avoided discussing the Mar-a-Lago documents investigation, referring reporters to the Justice Department. 

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Nov. 18, 2022, appointed career prosecutor Jack Smith as special counsel to take over two cases involving Trump — the documents investigation and the inquiry into attempts to overturn the 2020 election. Garland cited Trump’s presidential candidacy and Biden’s then-expected candidacy as the reason to appoint a special counsel. A special counsel is appointed when the Justice Department perceives itself as having a potential conflict of interest or if it’s determined to be in the public’s interest. A special counsel has autonomy to do its work, but is still subject to Justice Department regulations and oversight.

There's never been anything like what's happened. I’m an innocent man, I'm an innocent person. 

Fact-check: Trump is the first former president to be federally indicted in the U.S., though indictments of former leaders are not uncommon in other countries. In April, Trump also was indicted in New York on state charges that he falsified business records to cover up a hush money payment to adult film actor Stormy Daniels.

They had the Mueller hoax, the Mueller report, and that came out no collusion after two and a half years that was set up by Hillary Clinton and Democrats. But this is what they do, this is what they do so well. If they would devote their energies to honesty and integrity, it would be a lot better for our country. They could do a lot better. They can do a lot of great things. 

Fact-check: The Mueller report did not conclude that Trump or his campaign colluded with Russia on election interference. But it found "numerous links between the Russian government and the Trump Campaign" and said "the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome."  

It’s false to say that Clinton set up the Russia investigation. The Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund opposition research that was used to create the mostly discredited Steele dossier, but it was not the dossier that launched the investigation. Rather, the federal government began looking into Russian election involvement in July 2016 based on information from Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who told an Australian diplomat that Russia had "political dirt" on Clinton.

But when you look at what's happened to our country in the last three years, we were energy independent

Fact-check: The U.S. has long imported oil products from other countries, and continues to do so today — but there are multiple ways to calculate "energy independence."

One narrow measure of energy independence is when exports of crude oil and petroleum products top imports of those same products. When the U.S. reached this mark in 2019, some argued the country became energy independent.

… we had a strong military that wasn't woke, we were doing so well. 

Fact-check: It’s unclear what Trump is referring to here, but he has in the past exaggerated his spending on the military. Biden has proposed spending $886 billion, a 3.3% increase, in defense spending for fiscal year 2024, though some Republicans argued that it doesn’t keep pace with inflation.

We were respected all over the world, had the biggest tax cuts in history

Fact-check: This is False. Trump is referring to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in 2017. In 2018, calculations showed that when adjusted for inflation, Trump’s tax bill was the fourth-biggest since 1940, making it one of, but not the largest in history. No tax cuts have been passed since then, so these figures still hold true.

biggest regulation cuts in history. …

Fact-check: Donald Trump promised to cut regulation during his first term in office. PolitiFact’s Trump-O-Meter looked at how well he followed through, rating it a Compromise. Though Trump repealed some regulations, new ones were also passed under his presidency. By mid-June of his final year in office, the total number of regulatory restrictions were slightly higher than at the beginning of his term.

And what do you do? You have a president where an election was taken, got more votes than any sitting president in history by far, never anything even close. 

Fact-check: This is wrong and we’ve rated it Pants on Fire! The election was not "taken" from Trump. Biden won the Electoral College votes and the popular vote by about 7 million. State election officials, including Republicans, and Trump administration officials said there was no evidence of fraud and that the election was secure.

And they come after me, because now we're leading in the polls, again, by a lot against Biden and against the Republicans by a lot, who were leading against Biden by a lot, a tremendous amount. And we went up to a level that they figured the way they're going to stop us is by using what's called warfare. And that's what it is. This is warfare for the law. 

Fact-check: Early polling shows Trump leading in most states in the Republican primary field, which began to take shape in recent weeks as several potential challengers entered the race. General election polls tell a different story, with Biden and Trump each leading in different polls, neither by a wide margin, according to FiveThirtyEight, a data journalism website.

And we can't let it happen. We can't let it happen. Our country is going to hell, and then come after Donald Trump weaponizing the Justice Department, weaponizing the FBI. We can't let this continue to go on because it's ripping our country to shreds. We have such big problems, and this shouldn't be one of them. It's a hoax. The whole thing is a hoax, just like Russia, Russia, Russia, just like the fake dossier was a hoax. You saw the Durham report. You saw the Mueller report. It was all a big hoax, you had two impeachments and they lost and we won, and we had tremendous support. But that was a hoax and a scam. And now they're doing it again. It's just a continuation, seven years, even after I'm out. 

Fact-check: This is misleading. Trump was impeached twice by a Democratic-led House, and acquitted twice by a Republican-led Senate. He is the third U.S. president to be impeached and the only one to be impeached twice. The first impeachment in 2019 related to a phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in which Trump pressured Zelenskyy to announce an investigation into Biden. In 2021, after the Jan. 6, 2021, riots at the U.S. Capitol, the House impeached Trump for inciting the insurrection.

But it's called election interference. They're trying to destroy a reputation so they can win an election. That's just as bad as doing any of the other things that have been done over the last number of years and especially during the 2020 election. 

So, I just want to tell you, I'm an innocent man, I did nothing wrong. And we will fight this out just like we've been fighting for seven years. It would be wonderful if we could devote our full time to making America great again. And that's exactly what we did. But now again our country is in decline. We're a failing nation, and this is what they do. 

Fact-check: Trump has previously called the United States a failing nation when describing the state of the U.S. economy under the Biden administration. After two years of the Biden presidency, the U.S. economy has seen an increase in jobs and gross domestic product. Unemployment has decreased. Still, Biden saw inflation reach 40-year highs during his term. 

I'm an innocent man. We will prove that again. Seven years of proving it. And here we go again, very unfair, but that's the way it is. I just want to thank everybody. We are doing something very special for our country. We're putting America first. I always put America first. And that's why we were in a position. Unfortunately, that position is no longer valid because they've done such a poor job. But we're in a position where we're going to make America great again. I'm innocent and we will prove that very, very soundly. And hopefully very quickly. 

Thank you very much.

RELATED: 9 Trump claims about the Mar-a-Lago classified documents probe, fact-checked

RELATED: Timeline: Classified documents seized at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home

RELATED: Joe Biden classified documents timeline: Where, when were files found

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