Donald Trump spoke slowly as he delivered prepared remarks, read off a teleprompter at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Monday afternoon.
This is presidential Donald Trump, which means he’s still spouting off a lie a minute, but he’s doing so in a cool and collected manner.
Monday’s event had been conceived as an official rebuttal to Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, but the terror attack at a gay nightclub in Orlando early Sunday morning, which left at least 49 deceased in the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history, forced Trump to change topics.
In the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, Trump congratulated himself for what he said was his accurate prediction that another terror attack would occur on United States soil.
“Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism,” he tweeted, “I don’t want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance. We must be smart!” He then called on President Obama to resign and Clinton to drop out of the presidential race.
He announced, in a press release Sunday, that he would be focusing instead on national security.
Below are the most egregious falsehoods from his remarks.
“When I am president,” he said. “America will be a tolerant and open society.”
He then said that, in fact, America will be neither tolerant or open.
“When I am elected, I will suspend immigration from areas of the world when there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe, or our allies, until we understand how to end these threats.
“I want every American to succeed, including Muslims,” Trump said, riffing off his script. “But the Muslims have to work with us. They have to work with us. They know what’s going on. They know that he was bad. They knew the people in San Bernardino were bad. But you know what, they didn’t turn ‘em in. And we had death and destruction.”
Even in the prepared remarks, Trump suggested Muslims knowingly avoid reporting other, “bad” Muslims to authorities. “Muslim communities must cooperate with law enforcement and turn in the people who they know are bad—and they do know where they are,” the script read.
No evidence has emerged to support the insinuation that any Muslims were aware of the plot to murder members of the LGBT community in Orlando on Sunday.
Trump managed to contradict himself at different points in his own speech.
Trump referred to “the tremendous flow of Syrian refugees into the United States.”
In fact, according to NBC, America is lagging behind its goal to admit 10,000 Syrian refugees—halfway through the fiscal year, only 1,285 have been resettled. There are 4 million Syrians fleeing violence in the Middle East. The United Kingdom is working to take in 20,000 Syrian refugees by 2020.
Of Syrian refugees, Trump also said, “we don’t know who they are, they have no documentation, and we don’t know what they’re planning.”
A Google search or call to one of his many genius foreign policy advisers could have informed Trump that refugees are thoroughly vetted ahead of their arrival to the United States.
For the typical applicant, the process takes a minimum of 18 to 24 months—perhaps more for Syrian refugees, who face more scrutiny.
In his prepared remarks, Trump correctly says that the terrorist responsible for Sunday’s bloodshed was born to Afghan parents who immigrated to America.
In the speech Trump gave, however, he said something different, and wrong. The shooter, he claimed, “was born Afghan, of Afghan parents, who immigrated to the United States.”
But Trump doesn’t seem to recognize the difference, anyway.
“The bottom line is that the only reason the killer was in America in the first place was because we allowed his family to come here,” he said.
By that logic, protecting America–or Making America Safe Again!–would require banning all people of Middle Eastern descent on the off chance that they could one day spawn an American-grown terrorist.