Trump says he always tries to tell the truth when he can

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally to help Republican candidates running in the upcoming electionPresident Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally to help Republican candidates running in the upcoming election

US President Donald Trump says he always tries to tell the truth when he can, despite how the media portrays him.

“I do try,” he told ABC News in an interview aired on Thursday. “I always want to tell the truth. When I can, I tell the truth.”

Mr Trump has faced repeated criticism from US media and opponents for lying and distorting the truth around issues.

At times, conservatives have also censured the president for his claims.

“Sometimes it turns out to be where something happens that’s different or there’s a change, but I always like to be truthful,” Mr Trump told ABC’s Jonathan Karl.

The president also mentioned he was “pretty good” at estimating crowds during his interview, though one of the first times he clashed with the media was over the size of his inauguration crowd.

Since the start of his presidency, US media including the New York Times, Washington Post and Politifact have all kept running tallies of what they term Mr Trump’s lies and misleading statements.

Politifact, which is owned by the nonprofit Poynter Institute, currently has 11 pages on Mr Trump’s false statements.

Mr Trump has not escaped criticism from conservatives either over his questionable remarks.

Most recently, top Republican Paul Ryan was one of several Republicans to call into question the president’s assertion that he could amend the constitution with an executive order.

Nationwide negativity?

During a Wednesday rally in Florida, ahead of next week’s mid-term elections, Mr Trump re-launched his assault on US media, saying a third of Americans believed that the media was “the enemy of the people”.

The US president said a third of Americans believed “fake news” media was “the enemy of the people”

He did not provide a source for this figure, but one poll from earlier this year showed that just under a third of people agreed with the idea that the media is the enemy of the people.

Critics accuse him of fomenting violence by using extreme and divisive rhetoric against opponents, the media, immigrants and Muslims.

Mr Trump has regularly accused some sections of the media of misrepresenting his administration’s work.

In July the publisher of the New York Times urged him to stop calling reporters “enemies of the people”, saying it would “lead to violence” against the media.

Mr Trump’s remarks come as a new NPR/PBS/Marist poll shows around 80% of voters are concerned that the lack of civility in Washington will incite violence.

While the overall numbers show 40% believe the president is to blame, along party lines, the figures differ as expected.

Only 7% of Republicans place the blame on the president, compared to 71% of Democrats. Republicans in turn blame Democrats, 44%, and the media, 42%.

But 45% of independent voters say Mr Trump remains the chief cause of the nationwide negative tone.

A young participant gestures during a campaign rally with President Donald Trump in Estero, FloridaA young participant gestures during a campaign rally with President Donald Trump in Estero, Florida

What is at stake at the mid-term elections?

Recent days have seen the president escalate his rhetoric towards the media and regarding immigration – moves some say are an effort to bolster his base with five days to go before the mid-term elections.

Voters are choosing new members of Congress, but how they vote will affect how the rest of Mr Trump’s presidency turns out.

Both houses of Congress are currently controlled by Mr Trump’s Republican Party.

The Democrats think they can win control of the House of Representatives this year by winning a majority of seats.

Doing so would let them block or delay the president’s plans by refusing to enact them.

Some opinion polls put the Democrats ahead in many places.

  • BBC North America

U.K. Fines Facebook for Cambridge Analytica Scandal


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In Britain, the country’s data watchdog hit Facebook with the maximum possible fine for failing to protect users’ personal data in the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The fine is equal to around $650,000—a fraction of the possible $22 million it might have been if the breach had occurred after the EU’s new data protection laws went into effect in May of this year. The watchdog found that Facebook gave app developers access to personal information of some 87 million users without their knowledge or consent. The political consultancy group Cambridge Analytica then used the data to sway voters to support President Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign.

Trump Blames Media for Inciting “Anger” After Bombs Sent to CNN & High-Profile Democrats


Federal authorities have launched an investigation after pipe bombs were sent to a number of prominent Democrats, all critics of President Trump. The targets identified include President Obama, Hillary Clinton, George Soros, former Attorney General Eric Holder, Congressmember Maxine Waters and former CIADirector John Brennan. The packages listed Democratic Congressmember Debbie Wasserman Schultz as the return address. Police are also investigating a suspicious package sent to former Vice President Joe Biden and a suspicious package found today at actor Robert De Niro’s restaurant in New York. On Wednesday, CNN was forced to evacuate its New York office after it received what police described as a “live explosive device” along with a container of white powder. It came in a package addressed to Brennan. All of the targets have been vilified by President Trump in the past. Authorities said it remains unclear if the devices were operable bombs or designed to look like bombs. No one has been hurt by the devices.

Far-right activists clash with counter-protesters at the rally in Charlottesville [Joshua Roberts/Reuters]

The US president referred to “very fine people” on both sides of the divide.

Reacting to Trump’s latest statement, Andrew Anglin, administrator of now defunct neo-Nazi blog the Daily Stormer, praised Trump’s reaction with the anti-Semitic headline: “Trump Finally Gives Half-Assed Charlottesville Statement to Whining Jew Media”.

“I knew Trump was eventually going to be like eh, whatever,” Anglin wrote. “Trump only disavowed us at the point of a Jewish weapon. So I’m not disavowing him.”

Others also read Trump’s reaction as made out of political expedience rather than genuine ill-feeling.

Neo-Nazis on Twitter and the 4Chan forum celebrated what they saw as a coded message of support from Trump.

Right-wing leader Richard Spencer and former KKK leader David Duke also lavished praise on Trump.

Duke wrote on the social media platform: “Thank you President Trump for your honesty and courage to tell the truth about Charlottesville and condemn the leftist terrorists in BLM/Antifa”.

“By saying he is not taking sides, Donald Trump clearly is. When David Duke and white supremacists cheer, you’re doing it very very wrong.”

Chuck Schumer, Democrat senator


US President Donald Trump has denounced the removal of “beautiful” Confederate statues amid a heated national debate about US race relations.

“Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments,” he tweeted.

Mr Trump was criticised for blaming both sides for the violence, but belatedly condemned the white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups on Monday.

During a heated news conference on Tuesday he backtracked and again blamed left-wing counter-protesters for the incident, too.

“Robert E Lee, Stonewall Jackson – who’s next, Washington, Jefferson? So foolish!” Mr Trump continued in a series of tweets on Thursday.  “The beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed and never able to be comparably replaced!”

Relatives of Stonewall Jackson, a Confederate leader Mr Trump mentioned in his Thursday tweets, wrote an open letter to the mayor of Richmond, Virginia, urging him to remove the statue of their great-great-grandfather and all other Confederate statues in town.  “While we are not ashamed of our great-great-grandfather, we are ashamed to benefit from white supremacy while our black family and friends suffer,” the pair wrote. “We are ashamed of the monument.”

Robert E Lee V, the great-great-grandson of the famous Confederate general, issued a statement condemning the violence in the wake of the statue removals.

“While the debate about how we memorialize figures from our past continues, we the descendants of Robert E Lee decry in the strongest terms the misuse of his memory by those advancing a message of intolerance and hate,” he said in a statement to the BBC.  “He never would have tolerated the hateful words and violent actions of white supremacists, the KKK, or Neo-Nazis.”

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Thousands March Against Hate in Charlottesville, Philadelphia and BerlinThousands March Against Hate in Charlottesville, Philadelphia, Freeport, USA and Berlin

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On Wednesday night, hundreds of people gathered for a candlelight vigil on the University of Virginia campus to call for peace, later marching on the same route used by hundreds of neo-Nazis and white nationalists in their torchlight march last Friday. In Philadelphia, thousands of demonstrators marched against last weekend’s violence in a rally dubbed “Philly is Charlottesville.” And in Berlin, Germany, hundreds gathered at the Brandenburg Gate to protest against neo-Nazi groups. This is one of the demonstrators.

Jason, protester: “I am here because I am against Nazis. My grandfather fought against Nazis in the Second World War, and I think it is a disgrace that Donald Trump is not against Nazis.”