It's hot out there, politically speaking, with Hillary Clinton's convention going full steam and Donald Trump refusing to stay quiet while Democrats put on their big show. Reality is sometimes getting warped in the process.

A look at some claims Wednesday and how they compare with the facts, on a day packed with a lengthy news conference by Trump and evening convention speeches by high-powered Democrats, capped by President Barack Obama.


Barack Obama, president

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President Barack Obama speaks during the third day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on Wednesday. (J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press)

Obama's claim?: "After a century of trying, we declared that health care in America is not a privilege for a few, but a right for everybody."

The facts: Obama's health care overhaul does guarantee that people with pre-existing medical conditions can no longer be denied health insurance, but it also made coverage an obligation for everybody. People must have coverage or face fines from the IRS. That mandate remains highly unpopular.

The law provides subsidies to help low-to-middle-income people purchase a private plan. But even so, some find their premiums too high. And nearly 29 million remain uninsured, according to government estimates. Health care as a "right for everybody" may better describe Bernie Sanders' idea of a government-run system for all. That system also entails obligations: the higher taxes that would be collected to pay for it.


Obama's claim?: "By so many measures, our country is stronger and more prosperous than it was when we started."

The facts: That progress doesn't include much of an increase in household income, the yardstick people generally consider their most important measure of prosperity. The typical household now earns $75,365 a year, according to Sentier Research. That's 2 per cent higher than in June 2009, when the recession ended and six months into Obama's term. (All figures are adjusted for inflation). But it has barely budged since it was $75,287 in December 2007, when the recession began.


Donald Trump, Republican presidential nominee

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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at Trump National Doral in Florida on Wednesday. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

Trump's claim?: "I never met Putin, I don't know who Putin is. ... I've never spoken to him."

The facts: Not so long ago, Trump bragged about how well he knew Russian President Vladimir Putin. Now he says he doesn't know him at all. That appears to be closer to the truth.

In November, when he was trying to burnish his foreign-policy credentials during a GOP primary debate, he said of Putin, "I got to know him very well because we were both on 60 Minutes, we were stablemates, and we did very well that night." 

That claim was debunked at the time because Trump's only connection to the Russian leader was that they both appeared on the same show. He was interviewed in New York, Putin in Moscow and they weren't even in the same segment on the program.


Trump's claim?: "I never had a second thought in my life."

The facts: He may want to have a second thought about that thought.

In April, Trump told The New York Times that he should not have retweeted an unflattering photo of Heidi Cruz, wife of GOP primary rival Ted Cruz. "Yeah, it was a mistake," he said. "If I had to do it again, I wouldn't have sent it."

Then in May, he had a third thought.

He told Fox News that "I'm not walking it back" after all, and Mrs. Cruz was fair game because she was so involved in the campaign. Then in the same interview, he had a fourth thought that was much like the second one: "I wish I didn't do it."

Trump calls on Russia to hack Clinton's email during news conference2:06


Trump's claim?: "I have nothing to do with Russia, yes ... I built an unbelievable company but if you look there you'll see there's nothing in Russia."

The facts: Trump staged the Miss Universe competition in Russia, traveled there for it and boasted that it drew "almost all the oligarchs."

There's no evidence, though, that he has financial ties to Russia. He has neither developed properties nor licensed his name to buildings there, though he's tried.

He has sold property to Russians, such as a home in Palm Beach, Florida in 2008.


Tim Kaine, Clinton's running mate

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Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine speaks during the third day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on Wednesday. (J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press)

Kaine's claim?: "I want to tell you why I trust Hillary Clinton. First, she's consistent."

The facts: Not always — not on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, for example. She promoted the deal as the "gold standard" of trade agreements when she was secretary of state, then turned against it as a candidate who was facing a stiff contest from a primary rival who fiercely and consistently opposed the deal, Bernie Sanders.

Clinton hasn't been consistent in her explanations of why she had her own email server as secretary of state, changing her story as investigations revealed more about her email practices. That issue has contributed to public distrust of Clinton, a problem Kaine was trying to address in broaching the subject of trust in his remarks.


Kaine's claim?: "Don't take it from me. Take it from ... John McCain's chief economic adviser in the '08 race, who estimates Trump's promises would cause America to lose 3.5 million jobs."

The facts: That's a reference to Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics, who did advise McCain's 2008 presidential campaign, though in only a minor role. His analysis concluded that Trump's tax cuts and trade policies would plunge the U.S. into recession and eliminate 3.5 million jobs. But Zandi has supported other presidential campaigns: In this election cycle, he donated to Clinton.