Facts Matter: Break-in at Cummings' home not result of Trump tweet

Late last month there was an attempted break-in at the Baltimore home of Rep. Elijah Cummings on the same day President Donald Trump referred to the congressman as a "brutal bully." Although the events occurred hours apart, they were unrelated, despite some claims on social media, according to

"Elijah Cummings' house was broken into after Trump publicly attacked him on Twitter and Republicans say nothing," comedian Chelsea Handler posted on Twitter days later, PolitiFact said.

But the break-in attempt came hours before Trump's Twitter post.

Someone attempted to break into Cummings' home at 3:40 a.m. July 27, PolitiFact said, citing a Baltimore police report. Nothing was taken, and Cummings told the Baltimore Sun his security system alerted him to an intruder and he yelled and scared the person away.

At 7:14 a.m. Trump's Twitter post called Cummings "a brutal bully, shouting and screaming at the great men & women of Border Patrol about conditions at the Southern Border, when actually his Baltimore district is FAR WORSE and more dangerous."

Nearly a week later, on Aug. 2, Handler took to Twitter to blame Trump for the break-in. That post resulted in thousands of likes and retweets, PolitiFact said.

President exaggerates businesses fleeing China

While President Trump has increased tariffs on goods imported from China, he has exaggerated the effect the tariffs have had on businesses in that country, according to The Associated Press.

"China is losing so many - they're losing - thousands and thousands of companies are leaving China now because of the tariffs," Trump told reporters on Wednesday.

But there is no evidence of a mass exodus resulting in thousands and thousands of businesses leaving China, the AP said.

Some organizations have moved production to other countries such as Vietnam and Mexico and many companies are rethinking their supply chains to avoid the tariffs, the AP said. But it would take nearly a year and a half for companies to relocate factories to another country. It would also be hard for organizations to duplicate the relationships they have with Chinese contractors and suppliers, allowing them to quickly deliver particular products.

Trump recently threatened to impose tariffs next month on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese imports that have not already been taxed, the AP said.

House Dems weren't on Italian holiday

Photos shared widely on social media show a Democratic congressional delegation last month in Ghana to mark the 400th anniversary of the slave trade.

But many of the posts falsely claim the photos are "House Democrats vacationing in Venice, Italy," according to The Associated Press.

One image shows Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on July 31 shaking hands with Sarah Adwoa Safo, a member of the Ghanaian Parliament, outside the building in Accra.

Another photo has Pelosi, along with delegation members James Clyburn, the House majority whip; Karen Bass, chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus; and Reps. Barbara Lee, John Lewis and Ilhan Omar meeting with Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo on July 29, the AP said.

That photo was posted to Pelosi's Twitter account and her spokesman, Taylor Griffin, told the AP that the delegation was in Ghana at that time.

Before the trip, Pelosi said the delegation's purpose was to discuss "regional security, sustainable and inclusive development and the challenges of tomorrow including the climate crisis," the AP said.

On July 27, the group made a stop at the U.S. Army Africa headquarters in Italy, the AP said.

• Bob Oswald is a veteran Chicago-area journalist and former news editor of the Elgin Courier-News. Contact him at

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