At CPAC, Trump Confused About Biden, Russian Pipelines, and Gas Prices

Former President Donald J. Trump echoed familiar brags and grievances during his keynote speech at the Conservative Party Political Action Conference on Saturday.

Mr. Trump repeatedly cited the lie that the 2020 election was “rigged” and exaggerated attacks on President Biden. Even as he condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a “brutal act” and praised the country’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, as a “brave man”, he repeat his misleading statement that the Obama administration was only providing Ukraine with “blankets”.

This is a reality check.

What Mr. Trump said

“The wall will soon be competitive. We will build the wall and finish the wall in three weeks. It took two and a half years, two and a half years just to win all the lawsuits, more than 11 lawsuits they threw at us. And we finished it, and I said they couldn’t be serious. They don’t want to close small loops”.

Wrong. During his election campaign in 2016, Mr. Trump promised to build a 1,000-mile border wall that would be paid by Mexico. By the time he left office, his administration had built 453 miles of border wall, most of which have replaced or reinforced existing barriers. In places that were previously free of barriers, authorities have built a total of 47 miles of new main walls.

Mr. Trump’s oath that he would be able to finish the wall within three weeks also failed to keep up with the original construction schedule. Construction of replacement fences in Calexico, California, starting in February 2018, the first border wall project under Mr. Trump. Construction of the first new wall in the Rio Grande Valley began in November 2019. That number is 12.9 miles of replacement walls and 3.3 miles of new walls per month.

What Mr. Trump said

“Just a year ago we had the safest border in US history, record low gas prices.”

Wrong. When Mr. Trump leaves office in January 2021, the national average price of a gallon of gasoline for that month is $2.42. That’s not a record low. Gasoline prices fell to $2.21 in January 2015 under former President Barack Obama, $1.13 under former President George W. Bush and $0.96 under former President Bill Clinton.

What Mr. Trump said

“I was the one who ended his pipeline. He said you are killing me with pipes. No one else has ended his pipeline. Biden has arrived. He approved it. “

This is misleading. Mr. Trump was referring to the state of a natural gas pipeline between Russia and Germany under his administration and that of President Biden. In fact, the presidents of the United States – and most other European countries besides Germany and France – have constantly protesting project, but they have limited say over whether the pipeline will be built.

Mr. Trump sign the law imposed sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline in December 2019, bringing construction to a halt. But by then, most of the pipeline had already been built, with 2,100 km booked and 300 km left. Build continued one year later in 2020.

Current White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, describes Nord Stream 2 as a “Bad deal” divides Europe and leaves Ukraine and Central Europe vulnerable to Russian manipulation. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says the Biden administration’s objections are “Doesn’t waver.”

However, the US State Department lifted sanctions on the pipeline construction company in May 2021. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Servicethis could be due to the “limited ability of the administration to prevent the pipeline from coming online” while the sanctions “could jeopardize US-Germany and US-European cooperation.” in other areas, including countering Russian aggression”.

Mr. Biden enact new sanctions about the pipeline this week after Germany announced it would suspend pipeline certification in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

What Mr. Trump said

“The reason we have gas prices skyrocketing is because Biden shut down American energy, canceling our oil and gas lease just two days ago. Two days ago, they canceled many oil and gas leases because of the environment”.

This is misleading. The Biden Administration pause indefinitely new federal oil and gas licenses and contracts by court order. It does not revoke existing leases. A federal judge has blocked the way the administration calculates the costs of climate change, prompting the administration to halt data-driven management decisions. At CPAC, Trump Confused About Biden, Russian Pipelines, and Gas Prices

Fry Electronics Team

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