Mr. Trump on the Socio-Economic Statistics for Georgia’s Fifth District

Donald Trump today:

Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to mention crime infested).

As usual, data and Mr. Trump are distant strangers.

According to the American Community Survey, median household income in Georgia’s Fifth Congressional District is 48,017 constant 2015 dollars, in 2015 [1]. Median income for Georgia is 51,244 [2]. The 2.8% difference hardly seems to indicate that the 5th district is in “horrible shape”. The overall poverty rate for the 5th district is 17.3% [3], compared to 17% for the state.

(National median household income is 55,755; the national poverty rate is 14.7%).

What about the “crime infestation”. From the Atlanta Journal Constitution today:

The most recent violent crime rate for Atlanta and more than two dozen of its largest surrounding counties, according to the FBI, was 401 per 100,000 residents. That puts Atlanta at a rate similar to that of Clarksville, Tenn, which came in at 405. That’s higher than the rate of the Dallas-Fort Worth area (338) but lower than Kansas City (536), Columbia, S.C. (651) and Columbus, Ga. (469).

Update, 1/15, 12 noon Pacific: Here is more on the Georgia’s “horrible” and “crime infested” Fifth District, from the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Now that Donald Trump has called for help on “burning and crime infested inner cities”, we should remind him that Atlanta was burned during the American Civil War.

Update, 1/16 8:45AM Pacific: Politifact rates Mr. Trump’s statement Mostly False.

29 thoughts on “Mr. Trump on the Socio-Economic Statistics for Georgia’s Fifth District

  1. PeakTrader

    I’m sure, parts of his district needs lots of fixing and helping. Trump, if asked, would help fix the problems. Of course, some Democrats find a President Trump unacceptable. Lewis stated he doesn’t view Trump as a legitimate president. If

    1. baffling

      peak, there were many republican’s who did not believe president obama was a legitimate president. primarily because he was black. and he won both the electoral college and popular election. trump could not win the popular vote. and his success, and that of the republicans, was based in part on the alliance of the former kgb with the republican party during the election cycle. didn’t the trump stance on ukraine and the crimea make you think twice, when it was introduced into the republican platform? as a reagan lackey, are you not embarrassed by your parties alliance with the kgb?

      1. Ironbar

        @baffling: WRONG- In the beginning, those on the right opposed Barack Obama because of his policies and the things he stood for, primarily growing the federal government and NOT because of the color of his skin, PERIOD. This is a fact completely lost on you and your ilk, who can see nothing but race or social identities as away of defining people. The majority of those on the right look through the prism of beliefs, or as MLK said, “…not by the color of his skin but by the content of their character”. Obama’s victories where partially due to whites and other races voting to show their support for a black president and not for what he stood for as a man or politician. I don’t recall very public protests for the new president, who happened to be black, or Media personalities freaking out; but that’s happening today, due to the utter intolerance of those on the left for not getting their way. What more, the left chooses to completely ignore the content of the emails of the Clinton campaign and their willing conspirators in the press, not to mention her use of a private mail server to thwart oversight, and instead focus on the outing of these facts and what ever Russia’s part may or may not have been a part of it. So it’s selective outrage. I must admit, it’s a joy watching the left writhe in agony and begin to eat itself, but the real entertainment will be watching the new administration steam-rolling the left and the press for four years

        1. baffling

          “I don’t recall very public protests for the new president, who happened to be black, or Media personalities freaking out;”

          iron, most people with racist tendencies in today’s world do not gloat about it publicly. in fact, most are not even aware of their tendencies. the world has improved from 75 years ago. but some of those tendencies still do exist today. the birther movement promoted by the conservatives over the past 6 years is evidence of those tendencies.

    2. PeakTrader

      Baffling, list those racists Republicans. Are you saying Trump won’t be a legitimate president, because he didn’t win the popular vote? Crimea is a done deal. You can thank Obama. Nothing like that would’ve happened under Reagan. We won the Cold War and should have a better relationship with Russia. I doubt the Republican Party has an alliance with the KGB.

      1. baffling

        peak, you don’t think the birther movement, which donald j trump, republican leader, led for many years, had racist undertones?

        “I doubt the Republican Party has an alliance with the KGB.”
        i certainly hope the republican party was not coerced, or bribed, into its rather odd stances on the crimea and ukraine. but you certainly must admit, a reagan led party would not be taking the same positions. why do you support a dictator and strong man?

        1. PeakTrader

          I recall a liberal friend had suspicions of Obama and said “He came out of nowhere.” I doubt he’s racist. I would’ve liked to see his college transcripts, which prior candidates made available. Many people admire a strong and recently successful leader. Why do you assume I support him?

          1. baffling

            “I recall a liberal friend had suspicions of Obama and said “He came out of nowhere.”

            before his first term in office, obama had more experience as an elected official than mitt romney. maybe you and your friends aught to get out a little more.

          2. baffling

            and peak, the current president elect has no elected office experience. and we would have liked to see his tax records, to gain insight into his beliefs and behaviors-which prior candidates made available. he is an even greater unknown. why would you have had more questions about obama than trump, given the vagueness of the information available about trump? and given the information we do know-grab them by the ….- is not positive?

          3. PeakTrader

            Baffling, I told you what a liberal told me. Obviously, he wasn’t a huge political hound.

            And, most people have known about Trump, who’s been in the the spotlight, for decades. Moreover, Trump has been clear in his statements, which many people disagree with.

            You need to look beyond politicians and read about business people.

          4. baffling

            “And, most people have known about Trump, who’s been in the the spotlight, for decades. ”

            no. people know “of” trump-he has been in the spotlight. we know very little about him. which of his multiple personalities is serving as president? very little is really known about trump. which is why, coupled with the odd things he says and does, creates concern from many people regarding an elected official.

            just curious what those “suspicions” you talk of really were?

  2. Jim Ford

    I am reading this same garbage verbatim in 4 other stories I pulled up. The same! Identical! It’s obvious there is full fledged panick about John Lewis being shown for what he is. You , I can’t call you journalists, are simply a DNC mouthpiece! Just because Lewis walked across a bridge years ago does not mean he walks on water today! But to blatantly copy talking points shows everything you say is based on a lie!

    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Jim Ford: The quote is from a newspaper, a real one. The first set of statistics are pulled from the Bureau of Census American Community Survey.

    2. baffling

      “But to blatantly copy talking points shows everything you say is based on a lie!”
      copying of talking points is the echo chamber of conservative talk radio. they have been doing it for years. jim, where is your outrage for their behavior for the past decade?

  3. Bruce Hall

    As Paul Harvey used to say… “and now the rest of the story” … some not so bad; some not so good.

    “Here’s a quick data snapshot of Rep. John Lewis’ district:

    Almost 750,000 people live there, according to the most recent estimates from the Census Bureau. The population is about 58 percent African-American, about one-third white and about 5 percent Asian.

    The median household income is about $48,000 — slightly higher than Georgia’s median, but below the national median of $56,000. (The national median figure over the past five years has been about $54,000.)

    About 1 in 6 families in the district lived in poverty in the previous year. The same dataset estimated the national rate to be about 1 family in 9.

    The unemployment rate in the district was about 8.2 percent when the Census Bureau released its estimates last year for the American Community Survey’s 2015 one-year measurement. The same data set estimated the national unemployment rate at 6.3 percent, and the Georgia state rate at 7.1 percent. The national unemployment rate as of December, published by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, was 4.7 percent.

    Nearly nine out of 10 residents of the Fifth District were high school graduates or had education beyond high school, and about four out of 10 residents had at least a bachelor’s degree, according to Census estimates.

    The largest single chunk of employed residents in Lewis’ district, about half of the civilian work force, worked in a field grouped by the Census as “management, business, science, and arts occupations.” The district includes Atlanta’s downtown and main business district, and includes the headquarters of the Coca-Cola Company in Midtown and Delta Air Lines near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. It also covers the campuses of Georgia Tech and Emory University as well as the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and many of the city’s major cultural and arts institutions.

    The largest single sector employing people in the Fifth District is construction (12 percent), followed by “management and remediation services” (11.9 percent) and “management of companies and enterprises” (11.8).

    In his Tweets about Lewis, Trump also hit on a continuing issue for Fifth District residents, Atlanta’s crime problems, pegging the Fifth District as “crime-infested.” Atlanta landed at No. 14 in the nation for its rate of violent crime when the Federal Bureau of Investigation released statistics last year that applied to 2015.

    While overall crime in the city has been down, according to statistics cited by the Atlanta Police Department, Mayor Kasim Reed spoke last summer of a spike in the number of homicides and announced the creation of a gun violence task force.”

    The quote is from a newspaper, a real one.

    1. Menzie Chinn Post author

      Bruce Hall: You do know you are quoting the same newspaper article I quoted? In any case, do you agree with Donald J. Trump the district is in “horrible shape”? Seems like less than optimal, less than median, but “horrible” seems excessive.

      1. Bruce Hall


        No, “horrible” is political hyperbole … a technique commonly used by politicians of opposing parties.

        A poverty rate of 50% higher than the national average (1 of 6 versus 1 of 9 families) and ranked 14th in violent crime is probably considerably better than the Trump stronghold of Detroit. Trump wasn’t right; but Trump wasn’t wrong. It’s how you pick and choose. I simply cited “the rest of the story”.

        I really don’t get too excited by these sort of politicians’ exchanges. But I think they make great grist for blogs.

        1. Menzie Chinn Post author

          Bruce Hall: You have a nonstandard way of calculating percentages; it is pretty unique, in my experience. Here is my preferred calculation: Divide GA 5th district poverty rate by national, i.e., 17.3% by 14.7%, to obtain 17.7% higher.

          1. Bruce Hall

            True, non-standard. If I have 1/6th of a pie and you have 1/9th, how much bigger is my piece? 0.1666666/0.1111111

          2. Bruce Hall

            But the way you calculate it does make more sense. 1 of 9 in poverty 0.111111 versus 1 in 6 in poverty or 0.111111/0.166666 or the national rate is only 1/3 lower.

  4. Daniel Simmons

    I was looking for current achievements (last 20 yrs) on Rep. Lewis. I noticed a great deal of plaques, accolades no concrete evidence of policy achievements? I could be wrong but I think this man is a charlatan.

  5. Erik Poole

    Jim Ford: Regardless of Lewis’ current record as a Congressman stacks up, Trump’s behaviour as both chief government executive and Head of State is surprising to say the least.

    Do you actually believe that the President-elect will make the USA a better place with these defensive temper tantrums?

    Do you believe increased polarization and conflict among Americans will contribute to “Making America Great Again”?

    1. PeakTrader

      Erik, Trump’s behavior has improved substantially after the election compared to the campaign. Since the election, he has toned down his extreme views and has been working with democrats in politics and business. However, some Democrats refuse to work with him and don’t accept him as legitimate. Trump has been under attack by some Democrats with support of the mainstream media. I don’t blame Trump for defending himself. He should be kicking some Democrat and media butt, and he’s doing a great job.

  6. Dude

    The unemployment rate is about 40% higher. The crime numbers are higher than that. I rate trumps quotes a “true”.

  7. anon2

    The 5th Congressional District is NOT Atlanta AND more than two dozen of its largest surrounding counties.

    The 5th Congressional district is primarily Atlanta….and the violent crime rate for Atlanta in 2015 was 1119.6 per 100,000, which is three times the national average.

  8. Billy Joe Bob

    This is all you need to know that basically what Trump said was fairly accurate:
    “The 5th Congressional district is primarily Atlanta….and the violent crime rate for Atlanta in 2015 was 1119.6 per 100,000, which is three times the national average”

  9. Julian Bene

    John Lewis’s district includes the city of Atlanta and some neighboring suburbs. As a resident and member of the city’s economic development board, I can tell you we are in great shape. Talented Millennials love living in the city – and companies are flocking to set up shop here, close by Georgia Tech and in reach of our other universities and the world’s busiest airport. We added 6,000 great jobs in 2015 and 7,000 in 2016, with new major employers including GE Digital, Honeywell, Keysight, Anthem, NCR and UPS. Sure there are pockets of poverty and crime, as in every major city, but we are fortunate to have a police force that looks like our residents and has avoided the injustices that bedevil other cities.

  10. Kayla Reign

    •A 2015 report by the Annie E. Casey foundation found that 80 percent of African American children in the city of Atlanta live in poverty compared to 6 percent of whites and 29 percent of Asians.
    •The same report found that unemployment is 22 percent for African Americans in Atlanta compared to only 6 percent for whites. Meanwhile, whites earn three times as much as their black counterparts.
    •The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in November of 2016, the unemployment rate was 6.2 percent in Clayton, 5.2 percent in Henry, 5.1 percent in DeKalb and 5 percent in Fulton. Yet the average for the Atlanta region is 4.8 percent, according to the Georgia Department of Labor. Again, black and Hispanic unemployment is astoundingly higher than white unemployment.
    •The Georgia Department of Education reports as little as 62 percent of students graduate from public schools in Lewis’ district such as Clayton and the city of Atlanta. The statewide graduation rate is 79 percent. At one school in Atlanta, less than 10 percent of the pupils earn a high school diploma. The 5th District would have been home to the greatest number of schools targeted for state takeover under Gov. Nathan Deal’s proposed Opportunity School District which did not pass.

    Parents support school choice – whether charter schools or scholarships to attend private schools. They want a future for their kids when government schools fail them generation after generation. Yet Lewis and Congressional Democrats continue to stand in the school house door, blocking children from school choice opportunities that come before Congress such as a voucher program for Washington, D.C. students. They side with teachers unions over the welfare of children.

    As a result, tens of thousands of youth have lost the ability to earn a decent living and have succumbed to poverty, unemployment, gangs, drugs, prison and worse.

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