Once again, ‘fake news’ decried by Trump turns out to be true “I wanted to make sure, unlike most politicians, that what I said was correct. … When I make a statement, I like to be correct. I want the facts. … Before I make a statement, I need the facts.” — President Trump, Aug. 15, 2017 At the Fact Checker, we have vetted many statements by President Trump — and maintain a running list of every false and misleading claim he has made since he took the oath of office. The president’s factual errors on trade and tax policy are relatively easy to fact-check, as the data undercutting his claims can be easily obtained. But there have been a number of instances in which the president or his surrogates have flatly denied something — only to have that denial contradicted
weeks or months later by new documents or statements. Often, by then the media coverage has moved on to a new controversy. The release of the tape recording between Trump and his former fixer, Michael Cohen, is only the most recent example of this dynamic. Here’s a sampling of White House denials that eventually unraveled after new information was disclosed. Strikingly, these examples often involve situations that might place the president in legal jeopardy. There are, of course, many other instances — such as denials that Trump considered firing special prosecutor Robert S. Mueller III or why Trump fired FBI Director James B. Comey — but we kept this list
to cases in which either the administration admitted or official records showed the initial denial was false. Trump knew nothing about Daniels, McDougal or payoffs When the Wall Street Journal first reported just before the 2016 election that the company that owns the National Enquirer agreed to pay $150,000 to a former Playboy centerfold model for her story of an affair a decade ago with Trump — but did not publish it — Trump’s spokeswoman Hope Hicks was quick to dismiss it. “We have no knowledge of any of this,” she told the WSJ, adding that Karen McDougal’s claim of an affair with Mr. Trump was “totally untrue.” Hicks’s statements to the
media were often dictated directly by Trump. But that denial of knowing anything about the transaction was rendered false by the release July 24 by Cohen’s attorney of a recording of a conversation two months before the election between Trump and Cohen, secretly made by Cohen. “Um,” Cohen says, “I need to open up a company for the transfer of all of that info regarding our friend, David,” which is potentially a reference to David Pecker, president of American Media Inc., which owns the National Enquirer. Cohen mentions that he had “spoken to Allen Weisselberg [of the Trump Organization] about how to set the whole thing up” and Trump asks, “So, what do we got to pay for this? Onefifty?”...Read More
CMS Invites Additional Comments on Contested Medicaid Work Requirements After a federal judge invalidated the previously approved plan by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) to require very low income parents and caregivers to show that they are working or engaged in other activities in order to qualify for Medicaid coverage in Kentucky, CMS re-released the rule and another one governing Mississippi for additional comments. As we discussed earlier this month, the judge in the Kentucky case blocked the work
requirement because the court found that the agency was “arbitrary and capricious” in its decision-making, and showed no evidence that it considered the concerns that stakeholders raised in comments on the proposal. The decision found that the agency did not appear to independently evaluate the waiver’s impact on coverage for people with Medicaid, which it is required to do in approving any waiver. The judge returned
the issue to CMS, requiring them to adequately consider these factors. This return, called a remand, is not normally directly appealable, so to challenge the court’s ruling, CMS will have to release its own new decision and then defend that decision in a future case. In addition to CMS’s rerelease of the Kentucky waiver for additional comments, the agency also re-released for public comment a Mississippi
proposal that has been adjusted following the court decision in the Kentucky case. The Mississippi proposal also contemplates work requirements, but extends health coverage for two years for people who become overincome and ineligible for Medicaid by meeting the work requirement. Read more about the Kentucky lawsuit. Read a summary of responses or submit a comment on the waiver.
To Tame Prescription Prices, HHS Dips A Toe Into Drug Importation Stream It came as something of a surprise when Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced that the administration was exploring the importation of prescription drugs to fight high domestic prices. Azar and Scott Gottlieb, commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, who also endorsed the new proposal, had previously opposed the idea.
But drug prices in the U.S. have continued to rise and more than 80 percent of Americans say the government should take action. President Donald Trump has said drugmakers are “getting away with murder” and has angrily tweeted at companies about individual
price hikes. Although the candidate Trump supported the idea of allowing patients to import medicines, since he was elected he has not mentioned that option — which is strongly opposed by drug companies. Now, determined to explore more avenues to curb price
hikes, the administration is signaling that it is willing to consider what the industry regards as something of a nuclear option to address a recalcitrant problem. Carefully tailored to focus solely on specific situations where a highpriced drug is made by one company, it is finding support where broader proposals have failed….Read More
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